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Giulio V. Blanc papers, 1920-1995

Giulio V. Blanc papers, 1920-1995

Blanc, Giulio V., 1955-1995

Art historian

Collection Information

Size: 11.0 linear ft. (on 11 microfilm reels)

Summary: Papers compiled by Blanc concerning Cuban, Cuban-American, and Latin American art and artists dating from 1920 to 1995.

The bulk (8 ft.), of the collection consists of artists' files, 1920-1995, documenting nearly 300 artists with biographical material, letters, newspaper clippings, interviews, photographs, and exhibition announcements and catalogs. Among the artists represented are Maria Brito, Maria Martínez-Cañas, Pablo Cano, Margarita Cano, Marío Carreño, Ramon Carulla, Hernán Garcia, Antonio Gattorno, Wifredo Lam (file contains an interview with Cuban ethnographer Lydia Cabrera speaking on artist Wifredo Lam), Julio Larraz, Carlos Macía, Amelia Peláez (file contains an interview with one of the Peláez sisters, exhibition catalogs dating from the 1930s, and clippings from the 1920s), Enrique Riverón (includes illustrated letters and cards from Riveron to Blanc and his parents, and an interview conducted by Blanc), Demi and Arturo Rodríguez, Juan Sí, José Gómez Sícre, and César Trasobares.

Subject files (1 ft.), 1933-1995, relate to Cuban art, culture, and society, the Cuban Revolution, book projects, Havana and Sao Paulo biennials, and the Cuban Museum of Art and Culture in Miami concerning the controversy surrounding the inclusion of non-exiled Cuban artists in a 1988 art auction at the Museum.

Exhibition files (0.5 ft.), 1977-1995, relate mostly to exhibitions curated by Blanc, and contain letters from artists, museum directors and staff, and colleagues; drafts and finished essays for catalogs; exhibition catalogs and reviews from newspapers.

Photographs, 1981-1993, include b&w portraits of artists, photographs of Blanc with "Miami Generation" artists María Brito, Pablo Cano, María Martínez-Cañas, Carlos Macía, Arturo Rodríguez, and César Trasobares; and photographs of other artists.

Sound recordings consist of two cassette tapes: a 1992 College Art Association session "Artistic Voices of Latin America: The Aesthetics of Anti-Colonialism" in which Blanc was a panelist, along with Shifra Goldman, Juan Sánchez, Regina Vater, Guillermo Gómez-Pena, Oscar Vázquez, Victoria Libin, and others; and an interview conducted by Blanc with poet and priest Monseñor Angel Gaztelu Gorriti, a friend of many Cuban artists who presided over Amelia Peláez's funeral service in 1968.

Biographical/Historical Note

Art historian; Miami, Fla.; b. 1955; d. 1995. Specialized in Cuban and Latin American art. Blanc was born in Havana and came to the United States in 1960. He was educated at Harvard College, the Institute of Fine Arts of New York University, and the City University of New York. Blanc was a prolific writer of articles and catalog essays, a leading authority on Cuban art, and a significant link between Cuban and Cuban-American artists and American galleries and museums. He organized significant exhibitions including "The Miami Generation" (1983) and "Amelia Pelaez: A Retrospective" (1988) for the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in Miami, and co-curated "Wifredo Lam and His Contemporaries" (1991) at the Studio Museum in Harlem in New York. He also served on the editorial board for the magazine "ArtNexus".

Provenance

Donated 1998 by Margherita Blanc, sister of Giulio V. Blanc.

A Finding Aid to the Giulio V. Blanc Papers,
1920-1995
, in the Archives of American Art
AAA.blangiul
Biographical Note
Independent curator, critic, art historian and consultant Giulio V. Blanc (1955-1995) specialized in Cuban and Latin American art history and in his lifetime collected a wealth of material on the subject. Through his numerous exhibitions and keen articles appearing in national and international art journals, Blanc became a leading authority on Latin American art and successfully established himself as a link between Cuban and Cuban-American artists and US galleries and museums.
The Miami Generation
(1983) and
Amelia Peláez: A Retrospective
(1988) are two significant exhibitions Blanc curated for Miami's Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in addition to the celebrated
Wifredo Lam and His Contemporaries, 1938-1952
(1992) for New York's Studio Museum in Harlem. Giulio V. Blanc was among the key figures that catapulted Latin American art onto the mainstream in the early 1980s.
Giulio V. Blanc was born in Havana in 1955 to Baron Lodovico Blanc and María V. Blanc. The Blanc name hails from Italy and the title of Baron was awarded to Alberto Blanc, Lodovico Blanc's grandfather, while he was Secretary of State in 1873 under Victor Emmanuel II of Italy. As young advocates of Cuban culture, the Blanc's collected a number of paintings by Cuban artists but were forced to leave behind the works of Cuban masters such as Carlos Enríquez, Victor Manuel, René Portocarrero, Fidelio Ponce and others to facilitate an uncomplicated exodus from the country during the revolution. Lodovico and María were in their thirties and Giulio was five years old when the family settled in Miami.
Giulio Blanc completed his undergraduate education at Harvard and proceeded to Brown University and the Institute of Fine Arts in New York for graduate work (1979-1980). During his career, he served as an independent curator and consultant to The Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture (Miami), The Metropolitan Museum (Miami), and The Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art (New York) among others. He also lectured on Latin American art history at the Art Museum of the Americas, OAS (Organization of American States), Washington, DC, The University of Miami, and El Museo Nacional de Arte in La Paz, Bolivia. In addition, he worked as a consultant in the Latin American Paintings Department at Sotheby's auction house in New York and served on the editorial board of the magazine
Art Nexus.
Blanc was pursuing a doctoral degree in art history at the City University of New York before his premature death in 1995 at the age of thirty-nine.
1955
Born November 1 in Havana, Cuba to Baron Lodovico and Baroness María V. Blanc, young collectors of Cuban art. The title of Baron was awarded to Alberto Blanc, Lodovico Blanc's grandfather, in 1873 while Alberto was Secretary of State under Victor Emmanuel II of Italy.
1960
The Blanc family migrates to the United States because of the escalating revolution. Lodovico and Maria V. Blanc are in their thirties when they flee the island. The works of Cuban painters such as Carlos Enríquez, Victor Manuel, René Portocarrero, Fidelio Ponce and others were left behind to facilitate an uncomplicated exodus.
1976
Giulio V. Blanc serves as research assistant for one year at the Tozzer Library, Peabody Museum, Harvard University.
1977
Graduates cum laude from Harvard College with a B.A. in Archeology.
1979
Graduates from Brown University with a M.A. in Archeology. Was a research assistant until 1980 at the Gallery of the Center for Inter-American Relations, New York city.
1980
Receives a certificate in Museum Studies from the Graduate School of Arts and Science, New York University. Curates
Emilio Sánchez: Lithographs
which opens at the Pagoda, Ransom-Everglades School, Coconut Grove, Florida. Co-curates
Cuba in the Nineteenth Century
for Miami's Miami-Dade Public Library.
1981
Joins the Latin American Paintings Department, Sotheby's Auction House, New York and serves for two years.
1982
Co-curates
Young Hispanics, USA
which opens at the Lehigh University Museum, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and curates
Ten Out of Cuba
for INTAR Latin American Gallery in New York.
1983
Curates
Cuban Fantasies
at the Kouros Gallery in New York and
Pablo Cano en Paris
for the 4 Place de Saussaies in Paris, France. Also curates
The Miami Generation: Nine Cuban-American Artists
for the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in Miami and the Meridian House in Washington, DC.
1984
Serves as independent curator and consultant to Miami's Metropolitan Museum and Art Center and The Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture; The Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art in New York and other institutions. Lectures at the Art Museum of the Americas (Organization of American States) in Washington, DC; The University of Miami; The Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture (Miami); The Center for the Fine Arts (Miami); Rockland Center for the Arts (West Nyack, NY); and the National Museum of Art, La Paz, Bolivia. Curates
Young Collector's of Latin American Art
which opened at Miami's Metropolitan Museum and Art Center.
1985
Curates
Dancing Faces: An Exhibition of Mexican Masks
for the Metropolitan Museum and Art Center in Miami and
Nuevas Vistas: Latin American Paintings
which opens at the Wistariahurst, Holyoke, Massachusetts. Curates
Architecture in Cuban Painting,
for the Miami Dade Public Library.
1986
Receives and M.A. in Art History at New York University's Institute of Fine Arts. Curates
Carlos Enríquez
for the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture, Miami, Florida and
Into the Mainstream: Ten Latin American Artists Working in New York
for the Jersey City Museum in Jersey City, New Jersey.
1987
The exhibition
Aurelia Muñoz: Selections,
curated by Blanc, opens at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Miami, Florida. Serves as juror for
Expresiones Hispanas: Coors National Hispanic Art Exhibition,
Denver, Colorado. Curates
Visions of Self: The American Latin Artist
for the Miami-Dade Community College gallery.
1988
Receives a grant from the NY State Council on the Arts for research on Cuban artist Wifredo Lam for the exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York. Enrolls in the art history Ph.D. program at the City University Graduate Center, New York city. First bombing of the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in Miami takes place. Blanc's
Amelia Peláez: A Retrospective
successfully opens at the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture despite much controversy.
1989
Curates
Urgent Dream: New Work by Mario Bencomo
at the Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art (MoCHA), New York. Second bombing of the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture, Miami FL.
1990
New York correspondent for
Arte en Colombia,
Bogota. Serves as adjunct lecturer at Queens College (CUNY) for the Fall semester. Curates the exhibition,
The Post-Miami Generation
for the Inter-American Gallery in Miami, Florida. Co-curates
Figurative Perspectives: Six Artists of Latin American Background
for the Rockland Center for the Arts, West Nyack, NY.
1991
Visiting scholar at University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Writes a small play,
Tía Carmela: A Cuban Tragicomedy,
illustrated by Cuban artist and friend Pablo Cano.
1995
Dies at the age of forty of AIDS related complications.
Arrangement
The Giulio V. Blanc papers are arranged into seven series primarily according to type of material. Within each series, materials are arranged chronologically, except for Artist Files and Subject Files which are arranged alphabetically by either name or subject.
Series 1: Biographical Files, 1994-1995, undated (box 1; 3 folders)
Series 2: Miscellaneous Letters, 1983-1995, undated (box 1; 3 folders)
Series 3: Artist Files, 1920-1995, undated(boxes 1-8; 6 linear ft.)
Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1977-1995, undated (box 8; 1 linear foot)
Series 5: Subject Files, 1933-1995, undated (boxes 8-12; 2.5 linear feet)
Series 6: Untranscribed Sound Recordings, 1992-1994 (box 12; 2 folders)
Series 7: Photographs, 1981, 1993, undated (box 12; 2 folders)
Provenance
Donated 1998 by Margherita Blanc, sister of Giulio V. Blanc.
Processing Information
Processing of the collection was completed by Rosa M. Fernández at the Archives of American Art, Washington, DC, June 26, 1999. The finding aid was revised in October 2001 prior to EAD conversion.

Additional Forms Available

Microfilm reels 5476-5487 available for use at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan. A duplicate set was also donated to the CUNY Graduate Center Library, 365 5th Ave., New York, NY, at the request of Margherita Blanc.

How to Cite This Collection

Giulio V. Blanc papers, 1920-1995. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

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