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Fidel Danieli papers, 1962-1987

Fidel Danieli papers, 1962-1987

Danieli, Fidel, 1938-1988

Art historian, Painter, Educator, Art critic

Collection Information

Size: 8.4 linear feet

Summary: The papers of Los Angeles art critic and writer, art historian, professor, collector, and artist Fidel Danieli (1938-1988) measure 8.4 linear feet and date from 1962 to 1987. Found within the papers are writing and research files, and 108 sound recordings of interviews with or about 45 Los Angeles artists conducted by Danieli in 1974-1975 for the U.C.L.A. oral history project "L.A. Community Artists." There are also sound recordings of art performances and art talks, and printed materials, including numerous exhibition announcements.

Writing and research files consist of articles and reviews written by Fidel Danieli and supporting documentation and printed material. Files cover individual artists, exhibitions, and other scattered topics. Files on reviews of artists Danieli wrote include typescripts and handwritten drafts, printed materials, and photographs. Artists covered include Carlos Almarez, Larry Bell, Wallace Berman, Lorser Feitelson, Dan Flavin, Robert Graham, Jules Langsner, Richard Pettibone, Rachel Rosenthal, Alexis Smith, and John White, among many others. The file for Richard Pettibone includes 2 original sound cassettes and duplicates. Writings for exhibition catalogs and reviews of exhibitions focus primarily on Los Angeles exhibitions or exhibitions of California artists. These files include notes, typescripts, and printed materials. Also found are files for magazine articles written by Danieli. Research files include a set of index cards documenting a chronology of Los Angeles art and 9 sound cassettes of television shows that focus on California art.

Interviews of and performances by Los Angeles comprise 108 sound cassettes. The majority of the cassettes are artist interviews conducted by Danieli in 1974-1975 for the U.C.L.A. oral history project "L.A. Community Artists," but there are also scattered recordings of art talks, panel discussions, and performances. Artists include David Antin, Eleanor Antin, Judith Bettelheim, Nick Brigante, Annita Delano, Allan Kaprow, Peter Krasnow, Peter Plagens, Gary Lloyd, John McLaughlin, Shirley Pettibone, Betye Saar, and John White, among many others.

Printed material consists primarily of exhibition announcements about California artists and exhibitions.

Biographical/Historical Note

Fidel Danieli (1938-1988) was an art critic and writer, art historian, educator, and artist based in Los Angeles, California.

Provenance

The Fidel Danieli papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in 1990 by Sage Stormcreek, executor of Danieli's estate.

Funding

Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, administered through the Council on Library and Information Resources' Hidden Collections grant program.

A Finding Aid to the Fidel Danieli papers, 1962-1987, in the Archives of American Art
AAA.danifide
Finding aid prepared by Rihoko Ueno
Scope and Contents note
The papers of Los Angeles art critic and writer, art historian, professor, collector, and artist Fidel Danieli (1938-1988) measure 8.4 linear feet and date from 1962 to 1987. Found within the papers are writing and research files, and 108 sound recordings of interviews with or about 45 Los Angeles artists conducted by Danieli in 1974-1975 for the U.C.L.A. oral history project "L.A. Community Artists." There are also sound recordings of art performances and art talks, and printed materials, including numerous exhibition announcements.
Writing and research files consist of articles and reviews written by Fidel Danieli and supporting documentation and printed material. Files cover individual artists, exhibitions, and other scattered topics. Files on reviews of artists Danieli wrote include typescripts and handwritten drafts, printed materials, and photographs. Artists covered include Carlos Almarez, Larry Bell, Wallace Berman, Lorser Feitelson, Dan Flavin, Robert Graham, Jules Langsner, Richard Pettibone, Rachel Rosenthal, Alexis Smith, and John White, among many others. The file for Richard Pettibone includes 2 original sound cassettes and duplicates. Writings for exhibition catalogs and reviews of exhibitions focus primarily on Los Angeles area exhibitions or exhibitions of California artists. These files include notes, typescripts, and printed materials. Also found are files for magazine articles written by Danieli. Research files include a set of index cards documenting a chronology of Los Angeles art and 9 sound cassettes of television shows that focus on California art.
Interviews of and performances by Los Angeles comprise 108 sound cassettes. The majority of the cassettes are artist interviews conducted by Danieli in 1974-1975 for the U.C.L.A. oral history project "L.A. Community Artists," but there are also scattered recordings of art talks, panel discussions, and performances. Artists include David Antin, Eleanor Antin, Judith Bettelheim, Nick Brigante, Annita Delano, Allan Kaprow, Peter Krasnow, Peter Plagens, Gary Lloyd, John McLaughlin, Shirley Pettibone, Betye Saar, and John White, among many others.
Printed material consists primarily of exhibition announcements about California artists and exhibitions.
Biographical/Historical note
Fidel Danieli (1938-1988) was an art critic and writer, art historian, educator, and artist based in Los Angeles, California. Danieli received his B.A. in 1960 and M.A. in 1965 from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). For nearly 22 years, he taught at the Los Angeles Valley College in Van Nuys. He also taught and lectured at the California State College in Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley State College in Northridge.
Danieli was perhaps best known for his work as an art critic and writer, notably his reviews for
Artforum
from 1963-1968 that brought national recognition to many modern Southern California artists, such as Billy Al Bengston, Bruce Nauman, Robert Graham, and George Herms. A negative review of Jules Olitski caused the magazine to let him go. Danieli was a member of the editorial committee of the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art’s (LAICA)
Journal
, a contributing editor to
Artweek
, and writer and reviewer for
ArtScene
and
Images and Issues
.
Danieli’s special interest was in the early Los Angeles Modernists and he received a National Endowment for the Humanities grant around 1974 to fund research on the subject. From 1974-1975, he was also an interviewer for the UCLA oral history project "Los Angeles Art Community." The project culminated in the 1974 exhibition
Nine Senior Southern California Painters
at LAICA.
Danieli was also a painter, sculptor, and collector. His extensive art collection included photographs, paintings, ceramics, and prints. He bequeathed the bulk of his collection to the Oakland Museum and the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), and a few private collectors who were friends. His art library was donated to Los Angeles Valley College.
He was briefly married to Edie Ellis though they later separated. He suffered ill health for several years and passed away in North Hollywood on March 26, 1988, at the age of 49.
Arrangement note
The collection is arranged as 3 series.
Series 1: Writing and Research Files, 1962-1987 (3.2 linear feet; Boxes 1-4)
Series 2: Los Angeles Artist Interviews and Performances, 1974-1975 (3.1 linear feet; Boxes 4-7)
Series 3: Printed Material, 1969-1985 (2.1 linear feet; Boxes 7-9)
Provenance
The Fidel Danieli papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in 1990 by Sage Stormcreek, executor of Danieli's estate.
Processing Information note
The collection was processed and a finding aid prepared by Rihoko Ueno in 2015 with funding support by the Council on Library and Information Resources' "Hidden Collections" grant program.

Additional Forms Available

A few of the sound recordings in this collection have been copied for research access and are available in the Archives of American Art offices.

Restrictions on Access

Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice. Contact Reference Services for more information.

How to Cite This Collection

Fidel Danieli papers, 1962-1987. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

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