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George Sugarman papers, 1912-2001

George Sugarman papers, 1912-2001

Sugarman, George, 1912-1999

Sculptor, Painter

Collection Information

Size: 8.1 linear feet

Biographical/Historical Note

George Sugarman (1912-1999) was a sculptor and painter from New York, N.Y. Sugarman studied sculpture with Zadkine in Paris. He received the second prize for sculpture at the 1961 Pittsburgh International, and was one of the sculptors selected to represent the United States at the Sao Paulo Biennal in 1963. In 1960, Sugarman became a teacher in the graduate school at Hunter College in New York City.


In 1970 George Sugarman lent papers for microfilming (reels N70-50-51). In 1980 and 1983 Sugarman he donated portions of the material previously lent, along with additional material. More additions were received in 1999 and 2000 by the Arden Sugarman, Sugarman's neice. The collection was processed in 2003 with funding provided by the Judith Rothschild Foundation. In 2006, the Sugarman Foundation via Arden Sugarman donated the audio and video recordings.

Related Materials

The transcript and audiotapes of an interview with George Sugarman conducted by Paul Cummings in 1974 for the Archives of American Art's Oral History Program is available at the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Location of Originals

  • Reel N70-50 (part)-N70-51: Originals returned to the lender, George Sugarman, after microfilming.

Scope and Contents

The papers of painter and sculptor George Sugarman measure 8.1 linear feet and date from 1912 to 2001, with the bulk of the material dating from 1959 to 1999. The collection documents Sugarman's career as a sculptor primarily through correspondence, project files, exhibition files, writings, and photographs. The collection also includes address and appointment books, business and financial records, printed material, audio and video recordings, and one motion picture film.

The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence with family members, friends, artists, and scholars, reflecting Sugarman's diverse influences and interests. The project files and exhibition files illustrate Sugarman's prolific career as an artist and document Sugarman's numerous projects and exhibitions abroad, particularly in Japan.

The writings by Sugarman are noteworthy as they reveal the integral relationship between Sugarman's philosophical theories about art and his actual works of art. The business and financial records mainly document expenses incurred while working on various projects and exhibitions and while traveling. Maps, clippings, and brochures from Sugarman's many travels are included as well as exhibition catalogs and announcements for Sugarman and others. The collection also contains photographs of George Sugarman and his artwork, dating mostly from the 1970s.

An unprocessed addition consisting of audio (3 sound cassettes) and video recordings (1 video reel, 1/2", 11 videocassettes, 7 U-matic and 4 VHS), and one Super 8 mm motion picture film, as well as 12 DVD copies of the film and video recordings, was donated in 2006. Recordings include lectures by Sugarman, documentaries about Sugarman and his sculptures, and radio and television appearances by Sugarman. Among the documentaries are a film, "Baltimore Federal" (1977), by Mark Mikolas, about the public sculpture installed at the Baltimore, Md. Federal Building, and a video copy of a film by Sue Marx entitled "Seven Artists Seven Spaces, In a Hospital" (1976), about a public art project in Detroit, Mich.

Microfilm reels N70-50-N70-51 available for use at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.

Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center.

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