Skip to main content

Gloria Ross papers, circa 1924-1998

Biographical Note

Gloria F. Ross (1923-1998) was a tapestry ├ęditeur in New York, New York.
Ross was born Gloria Frankenthaler in New York in 1923. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College in 1943 and married Alfred Ross. They had three children: Alfred, Beverly, and Clifford. In 1954, Gloria Ross made her first needlepoint work from a design by her sister, abstract painter Helen Frankenthaler, and by the mid-1960s, she was exhibiting her tapestries and hooked rugs in New York. She established Gloria F. Ross Studio in 1966 and began regularly collaborating with artists such as Robert Motherwell, Louise Nevelson, Jack Youngerman, and Jean Dubuffet to make their works into tapestries. She created business partnerships with weaving workshops in Scotland and France to produce the works. In 1973 she had her first exhibition at Pace Editions, Inc., beginning a long relationship with the gallery as her main sales agent.
In 1979, Ross first traveled to the Navajo Nation to find weavers for a collaborative project with artist Kenneth Noland. She continued to visit the Southwest at least once a year until 1994, and she donated her collection of Navajo rugs and other textiles to the Denver Art Museum. Throughout the 1980s Ross traveled extensively for projects, exhibitions, and symposia. Her final commissioned project, completed in 1997, was a tapestry designed by artist Mark Podwol for Temple Emanu-El in New York. That same year she established the Gloria F. Ross Center for Tapestry Studies in Tucson, Arizona.