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Emilio Cruz papers, 1961-2008

Cruz, Emilio, 1938-2004

Painter, Performance artist, Poet, Playwright

Collection Information

Size: 5 Linear feet

Summary: The papers of African American artist and writer Emilio Cruz measure 5 linear feet and date from 1961 to 2008. The collection includes biographical material, correspondence, writings, personal business records, exhibition and project files, printed material, and photographic material.

Biographical/Historical Note

Emilio Cruz (1938-2004) was an African American artist, playwright, and novelist of Cuban descent. He was born in the Bronx and spent much of his life in New York. He taught at the Art Institute of Chicago in the 1970s and was active in the Chicago art scene. In the 1980s he returned to New York where he continued to exhibit. He later taught at Pratt Institute and New York University. His two plays Homeostasis: Once More the Scorpion and The Absence Held Fast to Its Presence were first performed in New York in 1981, and later in Europe as part of the World Theater Festival.


The Emilio Cruz papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by Patricia Cruz, Emilio Cruz's widow, in 2016.

Language Note

The collection is in English.


Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Henry Luce Foundation.