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Oral history interview with Alexander Brook, 1977 July 7-8

Brook, Alexander, 1898-1980

Art teacher, Painter


Collection Information

Size: 91 Pages, Transcript

Format: Originally recorded on 2 sound tape reels. Reformatted in 2010 as 4 digital wav files. Duration is 4 hr., 11 min.

Summary: An interview of Alexander Brook conducted 1977 July 7-8, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art. Brook speaks of his childhood and family; his early interest in painting; studying at the Art Students League with Dmitri Romanowsky and Kenneth Hayes Miller; women at the Art Students League; his first wife, Peggy Bacon; his travels in Europe; the Penguin Club; the Whitney Studio Club; working as a "talent scout" for Juliana Reiser Force; sharing a studio with Alexander Calder and Reuben Nakian; art sales in the 1930s; women as subjects; his portraits of Katharine Hepburn; and his painting technique. He recalls William Murrell Fisher, Lloyd Goodrich, Edward Hopper, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, and others.

Biographical/Historical Note

Alexander Brook (1898-1980) was a painter from Sag Harbor, New York.


These interviews are part of the Archives' Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and others.

Language Note

English .


Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service.

How to Use This Collection

Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Alexander Brook, 1977 July 7-8. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.