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Gregory Battcock papers, 1958-1982

Gregory Battcock papers, 1958-1982

Battcock, Gregory, 1937-1980

Painter, Art critic

Collection Information

Size: 10.6 linear ft.

Summary: Biographical material; correspondence, works of art, photographs of Battcock and works of art, financial records, artists files, printed material, date books, 1973-1977 and 1980; photographs; manuscripts of published and unpublished writings.

General correspondence, 1968-1980, is with publishers, critics, editors, art historians, artists, and colleagues relating to the various publications Battcock wrote, edited or contributed. Additional correspondence, arranged alphabetically, relates primarily to contributions to an anthology Battcock was editing on new music; several of the correspondents' writings are included in the file. Among the correspondents are David Bourdon, Peter Frank, Matthew Davidson, Richard Kriesche, Robert McGeehan, and Ernesto Jaime Ruiz De La Mata. Also included is a file of correspondence from the art magazine Trylon & Perisphere which Battcock co-founded with Ron Whyte. Writings consist of Battcock's dissertation (New York University, 1978) "Constructivism and Minimal Art," "What is Video Art," "Idea Art," "Wall Paintings and the Wall," notes, reviews, and press releases. Also included are files on artists, organizations, and subjects such as new music, video art, and performance art, containing mostly printed material but also some photographs and slides; printed material; and photographs of Battcock, Battcock with others, Puerto Rico, and travels. Also included are date books, 1973-1977 and 1980 and a video (U-matic) on Salvador Dali, 1975.

Biographical/Historical Note

Art critic, educator, and painter; New York, N.Y. Birthdate cited as 1937, 1939 and 1941; d. 1980. Editor, ARTS MAGAZINE, 1973-1980, and author of numerous books and articles on art and art education. Battcock was on the faculty of William Paterson College in New Jersey. He was murdered in Puerto Rico, Dec. 25, 1980.


Donated 1992 by Nancy Mahl, an artist who occupied a studio in Jersey City, N.J., that had formerly been leased by a moving and storage company, and who came upon Battcock's papers in the building. The papers had been shipped to Jersey City from a different storage location without the knowledge of Ron Whyte (executor of Battcock's estate) and the Rev. Paul William Bradley, who had arranged to have Battcock's papers stored after his death. Additional papers were donated 2003 by Rev. Paul W. Bradley, who inherited the papers after the death of his partner Ron Whyte.

Restrictions on Access

CLOSED FOR PROCESSING. Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.

How to Cite This Collection

Gregory Battcock papers, 1958-1982. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.