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Oral history interview with Franz Schulze, 2015 October 19-21

Schulze, Franz, 1927-

Author, Educator, Art historian


Collection Information

Size: 4 sound files (3 hrs., 7 min.) digital, wav

Transcript: 100 pages.

Summary: An interview with Franz Schulze conducted 2015 October 19-21, by Lanny Silverman, for the Archives of American Art's Chicago Art and Artists: Oral History Project, at Schulze's home in Lake Forest, Illinois.

Schulze speaks of his early life near Pittsburgh, PA; studying at the University of Chicago and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago; working for Raymond Loewy after World War II; teaching at Purdue University and Lake Forest College; the artists he admires, including Lucien Freud, Masaccio, John Singleton Copley, Rembrandt, Georges Braque, and Max Beckmann; moving from primarily painting to writing and teaching; writing arts criticism in Chicago versus in New York; developing the terms Monster Roster and Chicago Imagists; writing a biography of Mies van der Rohe; the development of the artists' groups The Hairy Who and Momentum; the lack of interest in Abstract Expressionism in Chicago; Chicago arts publications, including The New Art Examiner; how he got interested in writing about architecture; his opinions on newer Chicago artists; the development of Art Brut; his interest in portraiture; and his love of music, especially Bach; Schulze also recalls Raymond Loewy, Leon Golub, Seymour Rosofsky, Alan Frumkin, John Canaday, Paul Carroll; Peter Selz; Kathleen Blackshear; Katherine Kuh; Vera Klement, Martin Hurtig, Larry Solomon, Alan Artner, Nancy Spero, Blair Kamin, Dennis Adrian, H.C. Westermann, Jim Nutt, Evelyn Statsinger, Studs Terkel, Don Baum, Phyllis Kind, and others.

Biographical/Historical Note

Franz Schulze (1927- ) is an art historian in Lake Forest, Illinois. Lanny Silverman (1947- ) is a curator at the Chicago Cultural Center in Chicago, Illinois.


This interview is part of the Archives of American Art 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 administrators.


Funding for this interview was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.

How to Use This Collection

For information on how to access this interview contact Reference Services.

Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Franz Schulze, 2015 October 19-21. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.