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Galerie Darthea Speyer records, 1953-2010

Historical Note

Galerie Darthea Speyer was founded in 1968 by Darthea Speyer at 6, rue Jacques Callot, Paris, France. The gallery was notable for promoting American painting and sculpture in France until it closed in 2009.
Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Darthea Speyer began collecting art at the age of 15. She studied art history at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, and in 1950 went to Paris as a cultural attaché for the United States Information Services (USIS). In 1953 she helped organize the exhibition 12 Modern American Painters and Sculptors at the Musee National D'Art Moderne, a show that initiated a change in the way Europeans viewed American Art. While working for the USIS, Speyer founded the Centre Culturel Americain where she gave many American artists their first European exhibition. She continued to work for the USIS until 1965.
Speyer opened Galerie Darthea Speyer during the May 1968 riots in Paris with an inaugural show of works by Deborah Remington. The gallery was designed by her brother, A. James Speyer, and primarily exhibited sculpture and paintings by Americans, as well as works by some European artists. Over the next 40 years Darthea Speyer remained a powerful advocate for American artists in the European market.