Skip to main content

Oral history interview with Leo Rabkin, 1968 Dec. 4

Rabkin, Leo, 1919-2015

Painter, Sculptor


Collection Information

Size: 97 Pages, Transcript

Format: Originally recorded on 1 sound tape reel. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 14 min.

Summary: An interview of Leo Rabkin conducted 1968 Dec. 4, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art. Rabkin speaks of his youth in Cincinnati in a Russian-Jewish family; his early study of music; teaching; his watercolor techniques; prints on plastic; the importance of the box in his life; his concern with light; his collections of wood furniture and folk art. He recalls William Baziotes, and Ad Reinhardt, and discusses his involvement with the American Abstract Artists group.

Biographical/Historical Note

Leo Rabkin (1919-2015) was a painter and sculptor from New York, N.Y.


This interview is 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 .

How to Use This Collection

Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Leo Rabkin, 1968 Dec. 4. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.