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Hans Christensen papers, 1924-1989, bulk 1955-1983

Contents and Arrangement

The collection is arranged as nine series.

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  • To request an appointment to view materials, make your selections using the checkboxes and click the "Reading Room" button. Please note, you will receive the full box.
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Series 1: Biographical Materials , 1924-1983
1.2 Linear Feet
Boxes 1, 2, 13, OV 15

Biographical materials include 3 address books and 2 address card files, 27 appointment books, awards and certificates from various craftsmen's organizations, official documents and document books from Denmark, 3 sound recordings of family events and interviews with Christensen, legal records regarding his death, and 1 video recording of his memorial service at RIT.
Description Container Select
Address Books, circa 1970s
3 books
1
1-3
Addresses, Card Files, circa 1970s
2 sets of card files
1
4-5
Addresses, Miscellaneous, circa 1970s
1
6
Appointment Books, 1959-1983
27 books
1
7-21
Awards, 1981
1
22
Biographical Sketches, circa 1973
1
23
Birthday Gift, Wood Carving, circa 1939
1
24
Certificates and Official Documents, 1924-1981
Oversized material housed in Box 13, Folder 1.
1
25
Curriculum Vitae, circa 1976
1
26
Diplomas, 1938-1953
Includes letters of recommendation. Oversized material housed in OV 15.
1
27
Document Books, 1944-1946
4 books
1
28
Family Records, 1974-1975
1 sound cassette
Recordings include Danish Christmas and Els' operation.
1
29
House Architectural Plans, circa 1970s
1
30
Interviews, circa 1975, 1982-1983
2 sound cassettes
The first tape contains Christensen with Byron and a television talk show with Louis Wilson. The second tape contains an interview with Christensen in Rochester along with Christensen's memorial service at RIT.
1
31
Legal Records, 1983-1985
1
32
Membership Cards, 1973-1983
1
33
Memorial, 1982
1 videocassettes (vhs)
A sound recording of Christensen's memorial service at RIT is included on a sound cassette found with interviews in Box 1, Folder 31.
2
1
Oversized Certificates from Box 1, Folder 25, 1958-1983
13
1
Oversized Diplomas from Box 1, Folder 27, 1974
OV 15

Series 2: Correspondence , 1949-1986
1.3 Linear Feet
Boxes 2-3

Correspondence is with Christensen's family, mainly his mother Valborg, craft organizations, the International Institute of Arts and Letters, the National Rochester Society, and museums and silver companies. Also found is a set of chronological correspondence, 8 sound recordings of Christensen's communication with his wife Els, 4 sound recordings of telephone conversations with his parents and unidentified correspondents, and 1 sound recording of Luk Moran. Much of the correspondence after Christensen's death is to Els and includes sympathy cards, invitations to memorials, and documents for loans and purchases of Christensen's work.
Description Container Select
Family, 1978-1981
2
2
Christensen, Els, 1972-1973
8 sound cassettes
2
3
American House Ltd., 1955-1963
2
4
American Craftsmen's Council, 1956-1972
2
5
Dartmouth College, 1969-1970
2
6
Goldsmiths' Hall, 1967
2
7
Gorham Company, 1958
2
8
Greeting Cards, 1970-1983
2
9
Highland Hospital Foundation, Inc., 1981
2
10
International Institute of Arts and Letters, 1960
2
11
Moran, Luk, 1982
1 sound cassette
2
12
National Rochester Society, 1976-1978
2
13
Nationalmuseet, Denmark (Hans Lassens), 1961-1962
2
14
Rose Associates, 1963
2
15
Sigma/Supreme Cutlery (Julian Rosenberg), 1975
2
16
Speaking Engagements, Regarding, 1967-1980
2
17
St. Barnabas and St. Jude Churches, Regarding, 1960-1981
2
18
Telephone Conversations, circa 1970s
4 sound cassettes
Two tapes are of Hans talking about the Spring program, his conversation with his parents, and a birthday party. Two other tapes are telephone conversations with unidentified correspondents.
2
19-20
Thank You Letters to Christensen, 1958-1982
2
21
Wichita Art Association, 1955-1961
2
22
Chronological, undated
2
23
Chronological, 1949-1982
2
24-33
Chronological, 1980-1986
3
1-7

Series 3: Writings and Notes , 1952-1982
0.4 Linear Feet
Box 3

Writings consist of Christensen's essays on "Hollow Ware," projects at RIT, and 2 sound recordings of Christensen on the topics of RIT's teachings and ideas. Christensen's lectures are on the arts presented at Memorial Art Galleries, on design and silver, and 1 sound recording of lectures at the Women's Council and the American Craft Council. Christensen's notes are on an array of subjects including ailments, art and human beings, astrology, lists, professional projects, travel to Sweden and Denmark, his observations about the design and craft movement in Denmark, and 1 notebook on calculation rules and the chemistry of crafts. Writings by others are "Hans Christensen, Designer" by Eileen Quinn and a student paper on flatware.
Description Container Select
"Hollow Ware", 1952-circa 1970s
3
8-9
About RIT Projects, circa 1975
3
10
About RIT Teachings and Ideas, circa 1975
2 sound cassettes
3
11
Lecture, About Arts at Memorial Art Galleries, Rochester, NY, September 30, 1955
3
12
Lecture, About Design and Silver, circa 1961
3
13
Lecture, Women's Council and American Craft Council, 1982
1 sound cassette
3
14
Notes, Ailments, undated
3
15
Notes, Art and Human Beings, circa 1975
3
16
Notes, Astrology and Musings, circa 1974
3
17
Notes, Lists of Artists, 1978
3
18
Notes, Lists of Guests, 1975-1980
3
18
Notes, Lists of Suppliers, circa 1970s
3
20-21
Notes, Miscellaneous, circa 1970s
3
22
Notes, Professional Projects, circa 1970s
3
23
Notes, Observations About Design and Craft Movement in Denmark from 1800-1982, 1982
3
24
Notes, Travel to Sweden and Denmark, circa 1977
3
25
Notebooks, Calculation Rules and Chemistry of Crafts, circa 1942
2 books
3
26
By Others, "Hans Christensen, Designer" by Eileen Quinn, 1980
3
27
By Others, Student Paper on Flatware, circa 1965
Writer thanks Christensen on last page.
3
28

Series 4: Personal Business Records , 1953-1983
3.5 Linear Feet
Boxes 3-6, 13, OVs 16-17

Personal business records are divided into general, activity, and commission files.
General files consist of a card file of designs, a job notebook that includes project information and inventory kept at Christensen's home, price lists, sales records, and vendor files.
Activity files contain files for exhibitions in Rochester, Denmark, and Mexico; travel; and chronological files that contain records that mainly relate to exhibitions, but also include requests to publish photographs of Christensen's work, requests for photographs of artwork, correspondence regarding projects, printed material, and some teaching records that may overlap with material within the teaching files series.
Commission files contain templates, sketches, and some correspondence and printed material. The files retain the devised titles created by Christensen. Some of the titles include the name of the client while most titles only state the type of design. Some of the clients are the Eastman House, Friends of the Rochester Public Library, Gannett Gold, Nathaniel Rochester Society, RIT, Women's Council, Xerox, and several churches. Other sketches for commissions may be found in the artwork series.
4.1: General, 1955-1982
Description Container
Card Files, Designs of Type, circa 1970s
3
29-30
Job Notebook, circa 1970s
Includes inventory at Christensen's home along with project information.
3
31-32
Price Lists, circa 1978
3
33
Sales Records, 1955-1969
3
34-36
Sales Records, 1970-1982
4
1-3
Vendors, Financial Records, 1980-1982
4
4
Vendor, C.A. Brown, Inc., 1969-1982
4
5
Vendor, Handy and Harman, 1955-1982
4
6
Vendor, Hoover and Strong, Inc., 1969-1970
4
7
4.2: Activities, 1953-1983
Description Container
Exhibitions, American Metalsmiths (1974), 1974
Oversized material housed in Box 13, Folder 2.
4
8
Exhibitions, Faculty Show, 1975
4
9
Exhibitions, Fairtree Gallery, 1975
4
10
Exhibitions, Skolen for Brugskunst Show, Denmark, 1976
4
11
Exhibitions, Sterling Silversmiths Guild of America, 1973
4
12
Exhibitions, World Silver Fair, Mexico, 1973-1975
4
13
Travel, 1970-1980
4
14
Chronological, 1953-1970
4
15-18
Chronological, 1974-1982
4
19-28
Chronological, 1962-1983
4
29-31
Oversized Exhibitions, Wall Texts from Box 4, Folders 8-13, circa 1970s
13
2
4.3: Commissions, 1959-1983
Description Container
25 År, circa 1975
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
5
1
Armbånd Halskæde, 1982
5
2
Baptismal Bowl, Johnston, 1967-1969
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
5
3
Bird and Whale, circa 1980
5
4
Caffling, circa 1970s
5
5
Candelabrum, 1981
5
6
Chalice, Aho, 1980-1981
5
7
Chalice, Doell, 1979
5
8
Chalice, Laird, 1974
5
9
Chalice, Rom, 1980-1981
Oversized materials housed in OV 17.
5
10
Chalice, Tom W. and Kawiak, 1977
5
11
Chalices, Darr, 1981-1982
5
12
Chokolade, circa 1970s
5
13
Coca Cola Cup Design Competition, 1977
5
14
"Coffe", circa 1970s
5
15
Coleman E. Adler and Sons, Sailboat Trophy, 1960
5
16
Community Savings Bank of Rochester, Mobil, 1970
5
17
Communion Cup Carrier, 1971
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
5
18
"Compas", circa 1970s
5
19
Convocation Mace, 1967-1970
5
20
Crosses, circa 1970s
5
21-23
Cross, Doris Carey, circa 1970s
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
5
24
Cross, Candlestick , circa 1970s
Oversized material housed in OV 17.
5
25
Crowns, 1964-1966
5
26
Culver, Byron, 1981
5
27
Dartmouth, circa 1969
5
28
Eastman House, circa 1970s
5
29
Evans and Hartung, circa 1975
5
30
First United Methodist Church, Champagne, Illinois, 1965-1970
5
31
Flatware, circa 1970s
5
32
Flight and Hacker, circa 1970s
5
33
Food and Hotel, circa 1970s
5
34
Forman-Kodak, 1974
Oversized material housed in OV 17.
5
35
Friends of the Rochester Public Library, Annual Literary Award Bowl, 1962
5
36
Gannett Gold, 1980
5
37
Gannett, Isaiah Thomas, circa 1970s
Oversized material housed in OV 17.
5
38-39
Gas and El, circa 1970s
5
40
Gasser and Monroe, circa 1970s
5
41
Gleasons Works, Pin and Caff, 1970
5
42
Ives, 1979
5
43
Ives, 3 Arm Candelabrum, circa 1970s
Oversized material housed in OV 17.
5
44
Ives and Rea, Candelabrum, 1978
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
5
45
Goudy, Frederick W., 1960-1974
5
46
Gzella, Father Andrew, 1983
5
47
Inchworm and Matter, 1982
5
48
Industrial Engineering, circa 1970s
5
49
Jewelry Box, circa 1970s
5
50
Leroy, circa 1970s
5
51
Lee Nordness Galleries, 1959-1973
5
52
Library, Extended Service Bowls and Cup, circa 1970s
5
53
Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, Rochester, New York, 1968
5
54
Medallions, 1976
5
55
Mobiles, circa 1970s
5
56-59
Niagara Stabile, 1974
5
60
Northampton Cutlery Company, 1965
5
61
Stuart-Christy, Inc., 1964-1965
5
62
Nathaniel Rochester Society, Stabile, circa 1970s
5
63-64
Omega, circa 1975
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
5
65
Omega 2, circa 1970s
5
66
Omega C, circa 1979
Oversized material housed in OV 17.
5
67
Orbit, circa 1970s
5
68
Plastik, circa 1970s
5
69
PKP Founders Award, circa 1970s
5
70
Ray, NY, circa 1970s
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
5
71
Rings and Pins, circa 1965
5
72
Ritter and Eastman, 1976-1981
5
73
Rochester Institute of Technology, Alumni, circa 1975
Oversized material housed in OV 17.
5
74
Rochester Institute of Technology, Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Scholarship Medallions, 1976-1981
5
75
Rochester Institute of Technology, Candel, circa 1970s
5
76
Rochester Institute of Technology, Chalice-Nordness, circa 1970s
5
77
Rochester Institute of Technology, Collar, circa 1982
5
78
Rochester Institute of Technology, "Goudy Science Mowris 1829", circa 1970s
5
79
Rochester Institute of Technology, Scroll, circa 1970s
5
80
Rotary, circa 1980
5
81
St. Barnabas Church, Greenwich, Connecticut, 1959-1983
5
82
St. Jude, circa 1970s
6
1
St. Paul's Episcopal Church, circa 1970s
6
2
Sculptures by Name, circa 1970s
6
3
Silverpieces, circa 1970s
6
4
Tanker, circa 1975
6
5
"Tennis Lee", circa 1981
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
6
6
"Trust Is" Bowl, Founders Award, circa 1972
Oversized material housed in OV 17.
6
7
Widmer Cup, circa 1970s
6
8
Women's Council, 1981-1982
6
9
Xerox, Field Service Award Chalice and Candlesticks, 1971-1977
6
10
Card File, circa 1970s
6
11
Job Notebook, 1969-1981
Includes personal finance ledgers.
6
12
Engraver, circa 1970s
6
13-15
Oversized Commissions from Box 5 and Box 6, circa 1970s
Includes 25 År; Baptismal Bowl, Johnston; Communion Cup Carrier; Cross, Doris Carey; Cross, Candlestick; Ives and Rea, Candelabrum; Omega; Ray, NY; and "Tennis Lee."
OV 16
Oversized Commissions from Box 5 and Box 6, circa 1970s
Includes Chalice, Rom; Cross, Candlestick; Forman-Kodak; Gannett, Isaiah Thomas; Ives, 3 Arm Candelabrum; Omega C; RIT, Alumni, and "Trust Is" Bowl, Founders Award.
OV 17

Series 5: Teaching Files , 1954-1983
1 Linear Feet
Boxes 6-8, 13, OV 16

Teaching files document Christensen's career as a professor at RIT. His files include addresses, alumni files, contracts, correspondence with faculty, course outlines, records for the International Trade Fair of Rennes, grievance committee files which document a couple of conflicts between Christensen and other faculty, financial ledger for the studio, meeting records which include 1 sound recording, metalsmithing program information, a project proposal inspired by Denmark's Den Permanente, reports, and a studio floor plan. Student files include written evaluations of Christensen, records regarding faculty critiques of student work, costs for silver, and project sketches.
Description Container Select
Addresses, Card File for Silver and Metal Schools, circa 1970s
6
16
Alumni, Addresses, circa 1976-1980
Includes one group photograph.
6
17
Alumni, Correspondence, 1966-1980
6
18
Alumni, Exhibition Lists, circa 1966-1980
6
19
Alumni, Manufacturer Lists, circa 1970s
6
20
Alumni, Occupation Summaries, circa 1970s
6
21
Alumni, Miscellaneous, 1970-1977
6
22
Annual Reviews, 1960-1983, undated
6
23-26
Contracts, 1955-1982
6
27
Correspondence, 1959-1983
Includes correspondence with and about the Dean of RIT, fellow instructor Albert Paley, galleries, and memos regarding planning and the metalcraft program.
6
28-35
Course Outlines, 1954-1978
6
36-37
Course Outlines, 1954-1978
7
1
Event, International Trade Fair of Rennes, France, 1978-1979
7
2
Financial, Purchase Order Ledger, 1959-1972
13
3
Grievance Committee, 1967-1980
7
3-6
Meeting, circa 1975
1 sound cassette
Label reads "BJ + GG + HC"
7
7
Meeting, Applicants for Weaving and Textile Design, 1973-1978
7
8
Program Information, Metalsmithing, circa 1975-1982
7
9
Proposal, Den Permanente/Kilkenny Design, circa 1967
7
10
Reports, circa 1978-1980
7
11
Student Evaluations of Christensen, circa 1970s
7
12
Students, Faculty Critique, 1968-1974
7
13
Students, Silver Costs, circa 1970s
7
14
Student Work, 1974-1982
Oversized material housed in OV 16.
7
15-24
Student Work, 1979-1983
8
1-4
Studio Floor Plan, 1974
8
5
Oversized Student Work from Box 7, Folders 15-24, 1974-1982
OV 16

Series 6: Printed and Broadcast Materials , 1950s-1989
2.2 Linear Feet
Boxes 8-9, 14, OV 15

Printed materials consist of booklets, business cards, clippings and exhibition material that typically feature Christensen and his work, a scrapbook of printed material and a few pieces of correspondence, and chronological files that contain various types of printed materials about Christensen, metal crafts, and colleagues. Also included is 1 sound recording and 1 video recording of Craft by Hand, a Channel 21 broadcast.
Description Container Select
Booklets/Pamphlets, 1968-1979
8
6
Broadcast, Craft by Hand, Channel 21, circa 1980
1 sound cassette
1 videocassettes (vhs)
8
7
Business Cards, undated
8
8
Clippings, 1961-1982
8
9-13
Exhibition Announcements and Catalogs, 1960-1983, undated
8
14-21
Scrapbook, 1950s-1970s
14
2-4
Chronological, 1953-1982
Oversized material housed in OV 15.
8
22-32
Chronological, 1980-1989
9
1-3
Oversized Chronological Material from Box 8, Folders 22-32, undated
OV 15

Series 7: Artwork , circa 1970s
1 Linear Feet
Box 9, 13-14, OVs 15-24

Artwork consists of 1 sketchbook, a large amount of loose sketches, and paper and cardboard templates for projects that are unlabeled but may contain material for commissioned work as well. A portfolio of sketches with some printed material is contained within 5 oversized folders but original order has been retained as much as possible.
Description Container Select
Sketches, Metal Shop Addition and Shelving, 1982
9
4
Sketches, Miscellaneous, circa 1970s
Oversized material housed in OVs 16, 19-20.
9
5
Sketches and Templates, circa 1970s
Oversized sketches and templates housed in Box 13, Folders 4-5; Box 14, Folder 1; and OVs 15, 17-18.
9
6-15
Template, Wood, circa 1970s
9
16
Portfolio (1 of 5), circa 1970s
OV 21
Portfolio (2 of 5), circa 1970s
OV 22
Portfolio (3 of 5), circa 1970s
OV 23
Portfolio (4 of 5), circa 1970s
OV 24
Portfolio (5 of 5), circa 1970s
OV 15
Sketchbook, circa 1970s
OV 15
Oversized Sketches, Miscellaneous from Box 9, Folder 5, circa 1970s
OV 16
Oversized Sketches, Miscellaneous from Box 9, Folder 5, circa 1970s
OV 19
Oversized Sketches, Miscellaneous from Box 9, Folder 5, circa 1970s
Includes sketches by others.
OV 20
Oversized Sketch and Template from Box 9, Folders 12 and 14, circa 1970s
OV 17
Oversized Templates from Box 9, Folders 6-15, circa 1970s
13
4-5
Oversized Template from Box 9, Folders 6-15, circa 1970s
14
1
Oversized Templates from Box 9, Folders 6-15, circa 1970s
OV 15
Oversized Templates from Box 9, Folders 6-15, circa 1970s
OV 18

Series 8: Photographic Materials , circa 1940-1983
1.3 Linear Feet
Boxes 9-11, 13, OV 25

Photographs of Christensen include publicity photos, snapshots, Christensen with students and colleagues, in the studio, teaching, at the opening of a faculty exhibition at the Bevier Gallery, and a set of photographs by Omobowale Ayoride. Personal photographs are of travel, Christensen's family in Denmark, his first wife Betten, his second wife Els, pets, and home. A photo album contains personal photographs from the 1950s. Files for works of art contain photographs of Christensen's finished designs. Slide boxes containing a mix of personal and professional images are accompanied by written descriptions of the contents of the slides. The slides and desciptions were removed from the original container, but original order is maintained.
Description Container Select
Christensen, circa 1940-circa 1980
Oversized material housed in Box 13, Folders 6-8 and OV 25.
9
17-22
Christensen, Faculty Show Opening at Bevier Gallery, 1983
10
1
Personal, 1946-1970s
10
2-5
Personal, Album, 1950s
10
6
Works of Art, Bowls and Cookware, circa 1970s
10
7
Works of Art, Chalices and Candlesticks, circa 1970s
10
8
Works of Art, Pitchers, circa 1970s
10
9
Works of Art, Sculpture and Jewelry, circa 1970s
10
10
Works of Art, Silver, circa 1970s
10
11-12
Works of Art, Student Silver and Hollow Ware, circa 1981
10
13
Works of Art, Textiles, circa 1970s
10
14
Works of Art, Various Small Works, circa 1970s
10
15-16
Works of Art, Miscellaneous, circa 1970s
Oversized material housed in OV 25.
10
17-23
Slide Box, Description and Slides, 1960s-1970s
11
1-4
Oversized Photographs of Christensen from Box 9, Folders 17-22, 1961-circa 1970s
Includes a set of photographs by Omobowale Ayoride of Christensen, a set of Christensen working, and photographs of Christensen with artwork.
13
6-8
Oversized Photographs of Christensen from Box 9, Folders 17-22 and Works of Art from Box 10, Folders 17-23, circa 1970s
OV 25

Series 9: Unidentified Sound Recordings , circa 1960s-1970s
0.4 Linear Feet
Box 12

Seventeen sound recordings are in this series. Most recordings are labeled, but the titles are ambiguous or illegible. Legible titles read; "Hans Christensen," "Brennan," Griffen Summer '74," "Henry Moore," "The Worship of Nature," "Heroic Materialism," "The Pursuit of Happiness," and "Grandeur and Obedience."
Description Container Select
Sound Recordings, circa 1960s-1970s
17 sound cassettes
12

Make a Request

  • To request an appointment to view materials, make your selections using the checkboxes and click the "Reading Room" button. Please note, you will receive the full box.
  • To request reproductions, make your selections using the checkboxes and click the "Reproduction" button.