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Frank K.M. Rehn Galleries records, 1858-1969, bulk 1919-1968

Frank K.M. Rehn Galleries

The records of Frank K.M. Rehn Galleries in the Archives of American Art were digitized from 24 reels of microfilm. The records have been scanned in their entirety, and total 35,397 images.

Funding for the digitization of the microfilm of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.

Collection Information

Size: 21.8 linear ft.

Summary: The Frank K. M. Rehn Galleries records measure 21.8 linear feet and are dated 1858-1969 (bulk 1919-1968). The records consist mainly of business correspondence with collectors, artists, museums and arts organizations, colleagues, and others. A small amount of Frank K. M. Rehn's personal correspondence and a few stray personal papers of individual artists are interfiled. Also included are financial records, scrapbooks, printed matter, miscellaneous records, and photographs documenting almost the entire history of a highly regarded New York art gallery devoted to American painting.
Series 1: Correspondence contains correspondence with artists, museums and arts organizations, collectors, colleagues, and others documents the workings of Rehn Galleries from its earliest days through 1968. A small amount of Frank K. M. Rehn's personal correspondence and a few scattered personal papers of individual artists are interfiled with the business correspondence.
Series 2: Financial Records includes banking, insurance, and investment records, tax returns and related documentation, miscellaneous financial records and paid bills. Among the insurance records are detailed monthly schedules listing paintings with titles, artists, and insurance values. Miscellaneous financial records include inventories of gallery stock, notes regarding business expenses and income, and receipt books recording incoming paintings. Also included are a small number of items concerning the personal business of Frank Rehn and John Clancy.
Five volumes of Scrapbooks (Series 3) contain clippings and a small number of exhibition catalogs documenting the activities of Rehn Galleries and many of its associated artists. Additional Printed Matter in Series 4 includes material relating to Rehn Galleries and its artists, as well as publications produced by Rehn Galleries. General, art-related printed matter consists of articles, auction catalogs, advertisements, and publications of various museums, arts organizations, and schools. There is also material about artists not affiliated with Rehn Galleries. Additional printed items concern miscellaneous subjects that are not art-related.
Series 5: Miscellaneous Records, includes artwork, lists and notes, and writings. Photographs in Series 6 are of people including artists represented by Rehn as well as several not affiliated with the gallery. Noticeably absent are likenesses of Frank Rehn and John Clancy. Photographs of works of art are by Rehn Galleries' artists and others. Reginald Marsh's photographs consist of family and personal photographs that were either given to Rehn Galleries or perhaps loaned for research use, and include views of Marsh from early childhood through later life, photographs of family and friends, and a small family album. Also included are photographs are of Marsh's childhood drawings.

Biographical/Historical Note

Frank K.M. Rehn Galleries (1918-1981) was an art gallery in New York, N.Y. Owned by Frank Knox Morton Rehn (1886-1956), son of the marine painter Frank Knox Morton Rehn (1848-1914). John Clancy (1897-1981) was Rehn's long-time assistant who eventually became the gallery director; after Rehn's death he purchased the gallery, which continued to operate under the name Rehn Galleries until 1981.


The papers were donated in numerous accessions between 1966-1981 by John Clancy through the Rehn Galleries and merged and microfilmed in 2004 on reels 5849-5872. Most of this material had been filmed earlier as individual loan and gift accessions on reels NY59/17-NY59/18, D289-D293, 647-653, 2670, 2708, and 3814. The Hopper material was donated in 1985 by the Whitney Museum of American Art, who had received it from John Clancy. A death mask of George Luks received with the collection was transferred to the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution. The microfilm was fully digitized in 2007.

Related Materials

Samuel Adler Papers, 1902-1979. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Contains a recording (1 cassette; untranscribed) of Beverly Chesler interviewing John Clancy about the history of Rehn Galleries, 1973; Samuel Adler is present and participates briefly in the interview.

In addition, the Archives of American Art has among its collections personal papers and oral history interviews of artists and collectors associated with the Rehn Galleries. Researchers are advised to conduct a name search in the Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS).


Funding for the digitization of the microfilm of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.