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Oral history interview with Margaret N. Lockwood, 1992 Aug. 27 and Sept. 15

Lockwood, Margaret N., 1939-

Writer, Art patron


Collection Information

Size: 46 Pages, Transcript

Format: Originally recorded on 2 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 3 digital wav files. Duration is 1 hr., 53 min.

Summary: An interview of Margaret Lockwood conducted 1992 Aug. 27 and Sept. 15, by Robert Brown, for the Archives of American Art.
Lockwood discusses her upbringing in a Boston area Irish family and her early interest in writing; meeting and subsequently marrying (1960) George Lockwood, a poet, printmaker and printer; the printmaker Leonard Baskin, for whom Lockwood had worked; founding in 1960 with her husband the Impressions Workshop in Boston and her role there; special projects she undertook; and the quick succession of children (four).

Biographical/Historical Note

Margaret N. Lockwood (1939- ), is a writer and owner of Impressions Workshop, a gallery and center for printmaking in Boston, Mass. The workshop was acquired by Stephen Andrus in the late 1960s, who added Impressions Gallery.


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.

Language Note

English .



The following oral history transcript is the result of a tape-recorded interview with Margaret Lockwood on August 27 and September 15, 1992. The interview took place in Boston, MA, and was conducted by Robert Brown for the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

The reader should bear in mind that he or she is reading a transcript of spoken, rather than written, prose. This is a rough transcription that may include typographical errors.


ROBERT BROWN: Some sound out of this thing. We are going to record. This is August 27, 1992, interview with Margaret Lockwood, Robert Brown, the interviewer. I thought we'd start by going on a sort of biographical track. Maybe we could talk a bit about your upbringing. You were born here in Boston?


MR. BROWN: In '39?


MR. BROWN: What were your early interests? Did you have any consistency in your childhood?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, I was smart. And I had scholarships from my Catholic girls grammar school in Brookline Village to Holy Cross Academy, a full scholarship. Then I got a scholarship to Northeastern. And I dropped out after two years of going to Northeastern. I was interested in literature and not so much in art. I was interested in poetry and novels and was probably a prototypical beatnik. And then I went to work at Harvard.

MR. BROWN: You weren't a conventional Catholic schoolgirl of your day?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I was until I got out of high school. And then when I went to Northeastern, I think I was affected by the assault of secular humanism so that I lost my girlhood faith. And in that, George and I both had the same experience. We both were fallen-away Catholics. So we understood that when we met each other, that we both had been through that particular crucible. And he was at - he had gone to Yale, and I was a dropout college girl. But I went right to work at Harvard and had an interesting job.

MR. BROWN: What was that?

MS. LOCKWOOD: In the Museum of Zoology, I became a secretary for two famous scientists. And then after a year, I left Harvard and went to work for two lawyers because I didn't like working for the famous Ernst Mayr who was a very autocratic German. And I found myself being very rebellious. And so I dropped that job. And I contracted for a year to work at the Museum of Zoology. Then I went and worked for two lawyers and worked for them for a year, and in the middle of that year, met George and got pregnant right away, unfortunately for my career, but not unfortunately, since we got - he got a divorce from his wife that he hadn't seen for a year or two. And we got married when I was about four-and-a-half months pregnant in St. Mary's Church, because --

MR. BROWN: In Brookline?

MS. LOCKWOOD: In Brookline.

MR. BROWN: This was what, about 1960?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes. And Bill Bailey, the artist - William Bailey, who's now having a wonderful career in New York, was the - helped him get the divorce. He was the witness to George's marriage dissolving.

MR. BROWN: When you met George, he had just come up here?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah. He had come --

MR. BROWN: How long had he been here?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He had only been in Boston about four or five months. He had taken over this workshop of Ken McKenzie. It was a lithography atelier. McKenzie had this notion of somehow bringing back stone lithography. So he had a few stones and a beautiful little printing press that I don't know where he got it. And he got a Washington proof press also, and a beautiful studio on Scotia Street, which is no more.

MR. BROWN: Where is that now, relatively speaking?

MS. LOCKWOOD: It's behind the present Prudential building.


MS. LOCKWOOD: It was parallel to another street, where St. Cecilia's Church is. And I don't know. I think that might be St. Cecilia Street. So there were two little streets. In England it would be called a muse property. It was those brick stables that were two stories high, very stylish. So George had taken that over and was --

MR. BROWN: You never met McKenzie then?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I never met McKenzie.

MR. BROWN: He died, right?

MS. LOCKWOOD: His girlfriend was this kind of picturesque, I would think picaresque, woman, an adventurous artist-model named - He said several names. Her name was Martel Marsanne. And she was a model, a nude model. And George started having an affair with her when he took over the workshop. And she had great hopes for George, that he would be her boyfriend and that they could run this shop together, McKenzie's shop.

MR. BROWN: What was McKenzie's background? Did you ever hear?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think he went to the Museum School. And he died of cancer. He died of lung cancer, at 39, with no insurance and no prospects and no children.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And apparently, was a nice man.

MR. BROWN: Well, what he was trying to do was hardly business then.

MS. LOCKWOOD: He was trying to run - I think he was also - he had the idea of doing editions of fine printing, because that's why he had the Washington proof press and he had the lithography press. And I don't think there was an etching press. At one point - no. There may have even been the Starwheel etching press, which was always at Impressions. I'm not sure.

MR. BROWN: But at that time, there was nobody else involved?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No. The Starwheel etching press came from the Brookline Museum; that's where it came from.


MS. LOCKWOOD: Because another artist friend of George's, Leonard Baskins' roommate, Aubrey Schwartz, heard about a Starwheel etching press that the Brookline Museum was getting rid of. So George and he went and gave 200 dollars or something and got this beautiful Starwheel etching press from the classrooms of the Brookline Museum, because they didn't want it. They needed the room. So that's how that came. But --

MR. BROWN: Did George ever talk much about his education and that sort of thing? He was educated earlier at Yale.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Oh, sure. He was --

MR. BROWN: Studied (inaudible)?

MS. LOCKWOOD: -- still enthralled with Albers.

MR. BROWN: Josef Albers, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Under the great influence of Albers, who was a charismatic, as few other teachers have been in this country. Kokoschka, probably. Albers. He went to The New School. He went to Cooper Union.

MR. BROWN: Was George a New Yorker himself?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes, he was. He was from Brooklyn, from a nonartistic family of working class origins, yes.

MR. BROWN: But he was just very gifted and he just --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Always gifted. He --

MR. BROWN: He just went (inaudible).

MS. LOCKWOOD: No. In his neighborhood in Brooklyn, there were these wallpaper designers from Germany. It was a Bunz neighborhood, if you know what I mean.

MR. BROWN: Oh, you mean in the Nazi times.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, in the Nazi times in the '30s, there were neighborhoods that were filled with Germans, recent émigrés and also émigrés from around the 1890s. There was pickle factories on every corner.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: And there were herring factories. And it was as if you were in Germany. And so all these German wallpaper and fabric designers set up little shops, workshops. And George, when he was 14, started to be a boy that would work in them after school, changing the water in the paintbrushes. I mean, it was very much like the Old World. So by the time he was 17, he was doing repeats of the design. He was showing a facility for watercolor and for rendering.


MS. LOCKWOOD: So in a sense, his training - his eye was trained and his hand was trained as a - in a reproductive way to reproduce the touch and the petal-making or the repetition of the elements that these master designers of wallpaper had. So very interesting.

MR. BROWN: Did he enjoy that? He took to it right away?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Once I bought a pair of curtains for the kitchen that had a little calico print, and he threw them out the four-story window. He wouldn't have a print in his house. He wouldn't let me wear prints. He had also designed Formica designs.

MR. BROWN: So he'd had too much of that?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, he just hated design. He loved it in a way, because when we came to wallpaper our daughter's rooms, he would buy the very, very most expensive Schumacher wallpaper, the stuff that had 12 to 13 colors in it, because he knew all about retinol saturation, from art school. And he knew all about what people wanted. And when he had daughters - and we lived in an antique house - he - I can remember we paid, oh, so much money for 12- and 13-color wallpaper.

MR. BROWN: Color wallpaper.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And people would come into the house, and they'd say, "Oh, what a beautiful room." And he'd say, "You see? They're responding. Their retina is responding to the very, very rich color in the background. But they don't know why they like it so much." So it was the quality. He was teaching us all about quality in fabric and quality in design. But for himself, he couldn't - he loved the Bauhaus -- bathhouse.

MR. BROWN: So in a sense, that early experience in the German wallpaper place had stuck with him. And he had a start in a respect for quality.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, he hadn't - there was such a canny quality of knowing more. It was like a chess player. He knew more of what people liked than the people themselves did. And it was a deep, deep knowledge. He worked as a designer of book - book designs when he was still in the New School. He got design - he was able to do paperback designs and -- for Dell.

MR. BROWN: Who did he study with there in The New School?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Oh, the only one I remember was Nick Marizicano (phonetic), who was abstract, sort of a wild Italian. Let's see. That would have been in the early - the late 40s. Probably not a school of Paris art, more like the big blotchy stuff that was coming into New York before Pollock.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was big, influenced by Paris and German expressionists, but late - you know, postwar stuff.

MR. BROWN: And then he took work at the Cooper Union, too, you said.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And he studied at Cooper Union. I think his teacher was -- one of his great loves was calligraphy. And I think he studied calligraphy - I know he did - with Paul Standard. Strange name. So he had a wonderful hand. He could do lettering to the manner born. Copperplate or Chancery cursive, any of those things. And that helped in the design of books. But --

MR. BROWN: Well, I think it was after that, then, that he went to Yale?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He dropped out of Cooper the third year because Albers was interviewing artists who wanted to go to Yale. So he went, showed his portfolio, and got in. Just it was like a one-shot thing. You'd get in. And it was at the Museum of Modern Art. Albers was having auditions of people that wanted to go to Yale. And so then he went to Yale. And I think that he had come out of Korea. And he was on the GI Bill. So he could go to the New School.

MR. BROWN: Oh, he served? [Inaudible]

MS. LOCKWOOD: He served in Korea.

MR. BROWN: He served in Korea.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah, he had a Korean War - two years in Korea, where he did propaganda warfare. He did woodcuts in the style of the Chinese woodcutters, which were leafleted out of the helicopters onto the North Korean soldiery. And other artists were also cashiered into that. And he enjoyed that very much. Enjoyed - and translating, having a translator - a brilliant Korean translator would tell them folk tales. And then they would try to render the folk tales with the propaganda angle. You know, like, "Go home. Your wife is having an affair with the baker." And then they'd have to do it in a serial form, like in Chinese art.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, like a scroll.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah, like a scroll. And then they'd chop it up or they pulled it, and out it would go in the thousands. He thought it was interesting that the people would be affected by those simple ideas.

MR. BROWN: Yeah, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Like us with the Republican Convention.

MR. BROWN: I guess.

MS. LOCKWOOD: [Laughter] Family values.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter] So after that time in Korea, then he went to Yale?


MR. BROWN: Did he talk very much ever about - or a good deal about working with Albers?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He loved Albers. And he was half-German, you see. His mother was named Stumpf, George. So he had half German and half this English father. And he had German attitudes about the home - cleanliness, rigorous discipline.

MR. BROWN: Oh, I see.

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, it's true. I mean, he grew - was a working-class German esthetic. He loved Albers. He liked Bernie Chaet. He liked the people at Yale.

MR. BROWN: Chaet was already teaching there, wasn't he?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes, he was. He was graduate student, I think. George used to go to Albers. He was one of the favored students. I don't know who the other one was. I'll think of it in a minute. They used to go to Albers' house and have dinner with Albers and Annie. And then they'd go down cellar in this ranch house in New Haven. And Albers would have the students paint the paintings. George was a graduate student, and he was brought in to do the homages to the square. He would do - Albers would have the plywood laid out. And they would measure it off with pencils. And then Albers would have pencil notations of what color was on the outside and then what color was on the inside, and then the final square in the center. You know, the homages are three. There's a small square, and then a wider one, and then a further wider one.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: So they were all laid out, assembly-line fashion, and George would have to mix the color according to the color aid, you know, what color Albers wanted, and then lay it on in this beautiful brushstroke style. And maybe - I don't know how many he would do a night. But it was like Albers had the idea, he wanted to see it. And so the graduate students would render - would do them up. And if Albers liked it - I myself don't know whether he then went ahead and did them on canvas, or whether the students' work was Albers' work. Who knows? Who knows? People might know.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And then Albers was such a good father figure for George, because he had a terrible relation with his own father, a brutal relationship of beatings and nightmares, nightmarish. The mother threw the father out when the father - when the mother was 52. When George went to Korea and his older brother went to college, I think the mother couldn't take it anymore. She had had twins when she was 40, and she just said, "Get out. I've dedicated myself to the Blessed Mother. And I can't stand you anymore." And so the father moved out and lived in a trailer and was a conductor on the railroad. This made a big impression on everybody in the family, you can imagine. And they never got divorced, but this fellow - so George was always looking for older men, kinder older men.

MR. BROWN: [Inaudible]

MS. LOCKWOOD: And I think Steve was 10 years older than George, and he was kindly. And he was --

MR. BROWN: Steve Andrus?


MR. BROWN: And likewise with Albers, I imagine.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Albers was older, of course.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And I think probably when George was about 23, Albers was about 25 years older. He was probably in his late 40s, because he had come up from Black Mountain with Annie.

MR. BROWN: Right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And Albers was an autocrat. One time, George would tell the story of Albers coming home with George from Yale. And they were going to get ready to have dinner and go down cellar and do the work. And Annie had put up a Christmas card on the mantle. There was to be nothing in that house. The house was as minimalist. And he went over and ripped up the Christmas card and threw it in the fireplace.


MS. LOCKWOOD: So affable and avuncular he might have been, but he was also a tyrant.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And no clutter. Less is more. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: Well, looking back to this, did George feel he'd gotten quite a lot out of his studies with Albers?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Albers was a mystic. And George was a mystic. He loved Oriental Buddhism that he had found in Korea. He loved Taoism. He loved reductionist thought, you know?

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: He loved Japanese arts. (Inaudible) He was very drawn to the blank tablet, the poetry that went off into snow at the end of the poem; you know, everybody would disappear into snow, which I can understand, in retrospect. It was a reaction against the cluttered, familiar, household chaos that he came from.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And you know, we all love simplicity as a result. [Laughter] So Albers - the square was the great solution to the clutter of realism. And you know, I think that Albers took Paul Klee, who was working towards those big planar simplicities.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And he just took away all the gimmickry and the little figures dancing along the line. And, I mean, where did Albers come from? You know, I don't think that there was anybody - Miro was simplifying the picture plane. But Albers was so radical. I think there must have been a great desire to forget the past in Albers and to illuminate the fact of Germany from the map. And what's more beautiful than a page on which there are so few things? You know, he certainly made it like - it's like the cathedral door or - I don't know. It's like a door or it's like a window. I don't know what else it is.

MR. BROWN: What sort of work was George doing when he was at Yale?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Color - close-color-valued mystical landscapes of like orange and blue. Beautiful fields. And he was a pastoral - he like pastoral landscape. And Albers - he got all those guys that went to Yale, and a few women also, to take whatever they were doing and reduce it to two colors. Either he made George do work in black and white after awhile because he was too intoxicated with color. And so he had to work in black and white for a year as punishment. And he would get everybody's psychology going that way. You know, it's like, if you liked to do portraits of women, he would have you reduce those portraits. He was a reductionist. How do you get rid of the flab? So he, Birmelin, Fiddleman, Bill Bailey, they all went through the flattening effect of Albers. And George said it took seven or eight years to get Albers out of his head. But he was working hard at Mass Art teaching the Albers color theories. But he wanted to leave Albers behind when he was painting himself, you know?

MR. BROWN: Albers then really had a distinct imprint on him for awhile.

MS. LOCKWOOD: On everybody.

MR. BROWN: On everybody he worked with.

MS. LOCKWOOD: On anyone that came in contact with him.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I mean, he was - his scorn was modestly expressed, but deeply felt. You know what I mean? He wasn't going to kill himself yelling at these students. But he was a working painter, whose work was rather - and not - it wasn't held in very great regard, you know?

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: But I think he was a natural teacher from the Bauhaus on. And I think that his mysticism was very wonderful. And he let people be with their imagery. But he wanted to affect their methodology. You know, he wanted them to reduce it. His idea of beauty was two colors that had the same hue, but were like six colors away on the spectrum - very interesting. I don't think that they've ever exhausted that yet. You know, I can only see a Yale-influenced artist still working with those same principles, you know, of the color wheel. You take a yellow, like a lemon yellow and you go directly to the opposite, and you'll have a brownish green. Fabulous, it's a fabulous ability.

MR. BROWN: Did you get - did you meet him ever? Did you meet Albers?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I met him once, I think, at somebody's opening. I don't know whose it was. But I remember the kindly face. It might have been that I even met him at the - he might have come up to Impressions. I know that George took him from somewhere to somewhere else in Boston. Whether he went to a lecture or what, I'm not sure. I remember the face, but I can't remember - I was pregnant and can't remember too much about it.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm. Well, George would start teaching then, very early on while he was still a graduate student? You said he --

MS. LOCKWOOD: He must have been a TA.

MR. BROWN: But he also taught at the Smith College and at Amherst?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes, yes.

MR. BROWN: While he was still in or just out of Yale?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Just out of Yale with the MFA.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And he had a job. He had a job at Smith before he had the MFA. You had to go out and teach somebody somewhere for a year in order to get the MFA.

MR. BROWN: You did?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah, I think so. Maybe he didn't. Maybe he had the job after he got the MFA.

MR. BROWN: And then that's where he had met - in Northampton is where he met Leonard Baskin?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes. And that was a big imprint, too, because he was only about 29. And Baskin was probably 39 at the time. And he was the powerhouse on that particular campus, influential. And myself, I don't see why George was impressed with Baskin after working at Yale with Albers. I don't see it.

MR. BROWN: Why? Why do you say that?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Baskin was so derivative of - I mean, that black line of his and that Old Testament prophets. It was all so - well, I say it was hokey. I don't really mean hokey. But I think Baskin was just doing renderings of portraiture. I see it now as a kind of very faint European culturati.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I thought that Baskin's work was very commercial and impressive to the people that wouldn't have gone to college. I thought it was for the nouveau-riche to have a portrait on their wall, a print that they could afford. I couldn't understand it. Ben Shahn was a great painter, and he had a great line, you know, drawing wise. And I think Baskin was, instead of being a poor man's Ben Shahn, he was a neo-rich man's Ben Shahn. And he had no color sense.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I'd say that he also didn't have any political ideology, whereas Ben Shahn was a good leftist, good friend of the workingman, a good person who was in utter sorrow for the Holocaust and what the Europeans had been going through. But I don't think Baskin - I mean, you could fool me. But I didn't see anything but - I never saw anything in Baskin's work that had anything to do with his recent history.

MR. BROWN: You got to know him a bit, didn't you, Leonard Baskin?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Only as the little wife.


MS. LOCKWOOD: Of George, who was one of his protégés.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. Well, you've said that George did find that Baskin was a kindly mentor.

MS. LOCKWOOD: In the print game.

MR. BROWN: In the print game and wood engraving and so forth.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And also published his book, the Homage to Redon. And it was good for George's ego to have this man of printmaking semi-renown, or maybe renown, say, "I'll do a book of yours, George." So he did that. I thought it was very kind of him to do that. And he was looking for talent, you know. The more I see of life, the more I see older, wealthier people of prestige, they need young talent to come along so that they can pass on the torch.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know? It's necessary, necessary. But I think George's work was very school of Baskin. He took that idea of doing Redon, doing 10 portraits, straight from Baskin. And it was nice. The print dealers loved it because they could rip the book apart and sell the prints individually.

MR. BROWN: Individually.

MS. LOCKWOOD: The cannibalization of the book was taught. You make them a product that they can sell, they love you.

MR. BROWN: Ah. What did Albers think of that? Did you ever know?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Oh, I don't even know. I think that maybe --

MR. BROWN: Because it sounds (inaudible).

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think George went back to Yale, and I wouldn't think Albers would have been very impressed.


MS. LOCKWOOD: You know? Because he thought George was very gifted. But one time he made George give him a painting that he had done. It was a beautiful landscape in orange and blue, especially. And he said, "I don't know how much is you and how much is God, so make a copy and give me the copy - and then I'll decide which one I want." And so George rendered it exactly, all over again, and Albers took one. And he said Albers took the copy. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: Of course, that's an artist telling a story to make himself look good.

MR. BROWN: I'll say. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: But he really loved Albers' genius for teaching. And wonderful anecdotes - oh, he used to follow Albers around. And Mike Mazur, who was a student of George's, talked about George's genius for teaching and his metaphoric gifts and his way of - it was captivating to listen to him. And he learned a lot of how to take off in a kind of Zen way from whatever was going on, you know?


MS. LOCKWOOD: And we were very metaphysically enchanted with Zen and Buddhism. And we had a Gerga (phonetic) group that met in our house with all the artists. It's exhausting to think about it. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: This was after you were married?


MR. BROWN: Then after Northampton and Yale, he was -- taught briefly in Florida?

MS. LOCKWOOD: For a year, yes.

MR. BROWN: For one year?


MR. BROWN: He was just sort of plugging a hole there? Was there replacement?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes, no, he was plugging a hole there. Clinton Adams was a - I guess he was a printmaker. And he needed a printmaker. He was going on sabbatical.


MS. LOCKWOOD: So George replaced him. Interestingly enough, Clinton Adams also was involved in the renaissance of printing of lithography. I think he went out to June Wayne's Tamarind workshop and ran that with her. I don't know, but I think it's true.

MR. BROWN: That's right. I've heard it, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: So it's interesting that Clinton Adams was down there. And then George came to Boston and did lithography.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. And he sort of took off, took on McKenzie's workshop?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes, right.

MR. BROWN: And did he also come here to teach? Did he have another position?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He hoped to get something. I think he had - he got a nighttime job at the Worcester Art School under Sante Graziani, who was running the art school then. And George being a veteran was a little older. And I think he was a good - having an MFA from Yale, and he got maybe 100 dollars a week for running up to Worcester. He was glad of it. And then he was just keeping body and soul together. And when I met him, he had just finished an edition for IGAS, [International Graphic Arts Society] and had the Worcester job and was interviewing at Mass Art. And he did get the Mass Art job. He got a commitment from Mass Art in - sometime around -- when we got married. So he wasn't so worried about money. The teaching opened up at Mass Art.

MR. BROWN: To teach printmaking?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, to teach Yale color theory.


MS. LOCKWOOD: And I think the printmaking came later. But mainly, he was the one that was going to teach the Yale color system. And then he brought in Arthur Zehoner (phonetic), too. So, you know, once you get your foot in the door, you get your other Yale colleagues jobs. So it was interesting to see that work.

MR. BROWN: Well, did he continue teaching throughout the rest of the glides, I mean, while you had the workshop?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He taught for two or three years at Mass Art. And then he got a job at RISD [Rhode Island School of Design]. I think it was just because Mass Art seemed - the head of Mass Art was a career, a man - a career civil servant named Burt Toley (phonetic), who was a real pain in the ass. Wouldn't let George - George only wanted to have two days a week to teach. And he wanted him to teach three days a week. You know what it's like.

MR. BROWN: Yeah, I know.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I mean, the academic life, they want to break you. They want you when they want you. So he also - he had - the RISD job opened up. And I think that he might have angered Bertoli (phonetic) at Mass Art. And so he quit the Mass Art job and just made the RISD job be so that he had two days a week at RISD, I think, and then the rest of the time he could print and develop impressions, which was starting to take off. And you know, it took about - we were doing it for four years when Steve Andrus started to express interest in coming in as a partner.

MR. BROWN: What was your impression of those years? His teaching was a way of keeping his hand in teaching or making some extra money?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, no. He wasn't interested in teaching particularly.

MR. BROWN: It was a secondary thing for him, wasn't it?

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was just to make a living. He had the master's degree. He had gone ahead and gotten the master's degree. But he always expressed a lot of irritation at teaching because he loved these discoveries that he was making in the print world, with etching. And he enjoyed running a shop and he enjoyed hiring his students to learn lithography. And I think the process of the printing and developing inks and inventing inks and recapturing the past was very interesting to him. It was so fun, so much fun.

MR. BROWN: When you met him, what was he like? Obviously, there was an immediate attraction.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, he was very - he was quiet. But he told interesting stories when he would tell them. And he was from the same background as I, and he had this wonderful --

MR. BROWN: You mean urban?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Urban, working-class, and yet very smart people. I liked - he took me right down to meet his mother in New York. And he liked the fact that I had three brothers and that I had a mother and a father that worked and that he could understand our family. And that I was a rebel - I think he liked that. And I was writing poetry. So --

MR. BROWN: At the same time that your family - you had a whole family, whereas he didn't, right?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, no, he had a family.

MR. BROWN: Well, his father, though --

MS. LOCKWOOD: His father had left, but my mother was - my father was ill. And my mother put up with him and was very temperamental. And his mother - you know, I mean, it was similar. He could understand our Irish expressiveness. We didn't keep anything to ourselves, whereas his family probably had a little more repression. We spoke it all out. And my brother was at Harvard, and my other two brothers were in high school. But it was a smart young bunch of people. So we got married - we met in January, and we got married in May. And my brothers, I don't think, were speaking to him at the wedding.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: Because they just didn't understand the whole thing.

MR. BROWN: [Inaudible]

MS. LOCKWOOD: Nobody knew that I was pregnant, supposedly. But probably, my father understood it. And my mother got mad at me. And here I was, all of a sudden there was this husband. Who was this guy, and what was all the hurry?

MR. BROWN: I see, and including your brothers, too, wondered why.

MS. LOCKWOOD: They didn't know why I was suddenly getting married to this guy.

MR. BROWN: Right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: That had only been coming around to dinner for about a month. And what was the big rush?

MR. BROWN: Right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, it was obvious a few months later what the big rush was. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: [Laughter] Uh-huh.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Plus it didn't help things, we kept changing the date of the wedding because we had an astrologer, and she kept saying - she was this ancient woman. She said, "Oh, no, you can't get married. The aspects are wrong." And so we'd change the wedding date. And my mother was going out of her mind. And --

MR. BROWN: Because your mother didn't go along with --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, she thought it was disgraceful.

MR. BROWN: -- astrology, for one thing.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Right. She thought it was disgraceful. But George's family understood, because one of his aunts was an astrologer, in Brooklyn. Can you imagine that?

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: So everybody just said, "Oh, well, we'll show up." So we got married. And funny enough, Steve Andrus and his wife were at the wedding and let us use their house at the shore for our honeymoon.

MR. BROWN: George already knew the Andrus?

MS. LOCKWOOD: They were already taking a class with him at the workshop on Scotia Street. They were some of the young married couples from the suburbs that were coming in to dip into the art world and patronize the young artists. Always a good thing to do. You could always get work. While - and, you know, go to the openings. I think they might have met George because he had a show at Kanegis Gallery. And they met him and they heard that he was giving a class. And he had a lot of charm. And he was a good - made it interesting.

MR. BROWN: He was quiet, you said, but he was also pretty persuasive?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah. Well, he was a New Yorker. And he was a good talker, but he wasn't overly talkative. He wasn't a blowhard. You know how some people are? He was a good listener. And he was a real artist. And all the other artists in Boston, they were magnetized by each other. He had a few friends - Howard Schafer, wonderful artist. And through Kanegis Gallery, he met the other artists that were interested in mysticism, shall we put it. Hyman Bloom, Seymour Swetzoff, who was the brother of Hy Swetzoff, that George had done the first book with. The Homage to Redon had an essay on the nature of black that Hyman Swetzoff translated from the French. Very nice pairing of those two things. And Hy was a wonderful man, had a gallery, was homosexual, was murdered. And his wife Barbara Leeks was wonderful. And who had two children by Hyman. And it was a terrible thing.

MR. BROWN: Well, that murder occurred at the end of the '60s, I think, didn't it, a little later?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Sixty-seven.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was a terrible thing. I don't even know - I don't know whether they were still married. I think they might have been still married.

MR. BROWN: You said these artists, other younger artists, they were all sort of magnetized by one another. You mean there were a great many mutually attracting --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, they were interested in mysticism.

MR. BROWN: Mysticism.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And we used to go with Seymour Swetzoff to this Bedanta (phonetic) group and meditate. And we both got initiated by this guru, Kirpal Singh, who was a Sikh, who had visited Boston once in the '50s and had about seven disciples. How did we find it? I don't know. Oh, I found it before George did. So I brought him to my meetings, and we would meditate on Friday nights. And it was very nice. It was very innocent. It was the beginning of that. It was long before the Maharishi. And people were looking for an alternative to going to church. So they ended up going to church to these gurus. But George was already into that because one of his girlfriends when he came to Boston was a woman named Moroi Morse, who was a vice president of Polaroid and very intimate friend of Dr. Land. And Moroi was a spiritualist. And they would all go to the spiritualist séance. And I don't know that Dr. Land was into it, but Moroi was certainly trying to get inventions for Polaroid through the astral plane.

MR. BROWN: Oh, really?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Very interesting stuff. I don't know how much of it was just Fantasy Island. But --

MR. BROWN: A number of these people or these artists came from fairly rigid backgrounds? Or let's say that you said they sort of didn't go to church. Were these people perhaps conventionally Catholic or Jewish or something?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, Hyman was always interested in - was interested in Indian mysticism, Hyman Bloom.

MR. BROWN: Sure. Right. I mean, looking back --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Seymour was Jewish, and he was raised in a generation when nobody would go to Shul. David Aronson, they all did rabbis and paintings and Jewish mystics.

MR. BROWN: Right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: But they didn't have any particular observance themselves. You know, they were looking at their own religion as a shtick or a subject for art, much the way that the Renaissance artists.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I mean, I don't think there's anything unusual about artists being nonbelievers, but still producing art that had to do with their family, their ethnic persuasion. Hyman Swetzoff wasn't a believer. Seymour was wanting to have something that was probably like the wonder-working rabbis. They liked all these - so Howard Schafer was mentally ill later. But he worked for the St. Botolph glassworks and Batofsky (phonetic). And who else? Most of the artists didn't believe in anything. So if they went to church, it was because their wives wanted them at church. I don't think anyone went to church.

MR. BROWN: Was this a time that in general they were - any quality of rebellion against things, against --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, you can remember. Whoever went to church in the '50s?

MR. BROWN: Right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Everybody was going to college. They were living away from home. They thought it was all bogus, bunkum. The intellectuals were totally de-resonated (phonetic). They were away from their own ethnic groups and away from their religions and away from everything. What were they interested in? It was sex and liquor.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. That played --

MS. LOCKWOOD: And partying and the city.

MR. BROWN: They played - all four things played heavy roles (inaudible) in those days.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Still do. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: Well, the liquor.

MS. LOCKWOOD: The liquor, the drugs - also, drugs. I mean, I knew - George took peyote at Yale. And I think a lot of artists were interested in hashish, marijuana, what other drugs? Some artists, Hyman took LSD, to no good effect.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: Because the guys that were starting to do the studies of LSD were at Harvard. It wasn't Larry and Alfred, it was somebody before them. And those two bogus operators - I knew both of them. Um. There was a lot of experimental folderol. And it was before the media got hold of it. But I smoked marijuana at Northeastern. And it was probably - smoking marijuana, I entered the jazz culture. And that's why I dropped out of school. I lost my, I don't know, will to study. The jazz world and pot was a very - you couldn't overcome the influence of it. You can see each generation has its drug. And the more clandestine and underground, the more affecting it is, you know. My own children smoked pot. But since I had, I was always able to scorn their use of it and minimize its - hopefully. I'm saying that, knock on wood. I used to laugh at them and say they couldn't finish their sentences. That's what -

MR. BROWN: Was there much interest, say, in the late '50s, early '60s, not much then?


MR. BROWN: It was your bohemian, sort of hermetic world (inaudible). So you were probably fairly small in number in this city at that time, is that right? Artists, writers, students?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah. I don't think there was too many artists. I mean, everybody went to the Museum School or to Mass Art or taught there. And the beatnik, you know the Kerouac thing hadn't happened yet. People were - there was still a lawfulness. I mean, people weren't lawless, whereas I think Kerouac, those people were lawless. Burroughs shot his wife in the head. They went to Mexico. They did drugs. They went to whorehouses. I don't think the artists were that lawless.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: The women were putting out. But then they got pregnant. So they got married. Girls were having a lot of sex, but they would be married by the time they were 21 because you were pregnant by somebody.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, most of the women I knew were pregnant at marriage, and they were married to artists. And they, you know, kind of went along with things. You gradually got more middle class as you got more children. You know, you'd leave the apartment in the city and move out to Newton and to buy a big house for 20,000 dollars. And then so it went.

MR. BROWN: Where did you live at first when you were first married?

MS. LOCKWOOD: We lived on Cortez Street in a house that was filled with artists. Our landlord was in jail. He was an arsonist. So the deal was, you moved in. You paid a month's rent. And then you never paid rent again. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: Lucky deal. [Laughter] So Jason Berger and Marilyn Powers, his wife, lived in our apartment. They moved to Brookline. And we moved in there. And Howard Schafer also lived there, who was with Kanegis Gallery. He was Kanegis -- Sidney Kanegis' brother-in-law. And then on the third floor was Polly Doyle. She was a painter. She worked for a printer. And then Billy Georginis, who is a painter in Santa Fe now, and he went to Yale with George, he also lived in that building. And then another family, Mitsy Judd - Mitsy and Stewart Judd, and she's a painter in Los Angeles now. And they were into mysticism, too. So I think that the whole building, except for an ancient crone, was artists - beautiful building. So we all lived for nothing. And the lawyer for the landlord would occasionally come around. And we'd all say to him, "Shame on you for representing an arsonist. Get out of here." So the poor - the landlord had to do time in jail because he had burned down -


MR. BROWN: (Inaudible)

MS. LOCKWOOD: And the twin of his building had been burned down. And so nobody - there was nobody with any moral authority to collect rent. So finally, about three years later, we moved out and moved into Impressions, the shop, because we would only have to pay so little money, and we could rent this loft.

MR. BROWN: This Impressions was your name for it, or was that the name McKenzie had --

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, that was our name for it.

MR. BROWN: This was the one on Scotia Street?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, it's Daniel Street.

MR. BROWN: Oh, you'd moved it by then. Or you closed out?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He moved out of Scotia Street because he found - let's see. He moved into an apartment. He lived in the apartment. We lived there from when we got married in June of '60, until '62. So we lived there a year or two - a year and a half. Meanwhile, he had found this loft to move his presses into from Scotia Street, which was being torn down with urban renewal. And so the presses went into this loft on the second floor. And then Zanova (phonetic) Gallery went bust, and this space was available. And he said, "Why don't we move in there and not - and move out of the apartment?" because we were feeling like it couldn't go on forever. We were living there.

MR. BROWN: Right. Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And it couldn't go on forever.

MR. BROWN: Not Cortez Street arrangements.

MS. LOCKWOOD: The Cortez Street arrangement couldn't go on forever.


MS. LOCKWOOD: And we were feeling like guilty that we weren't paying rent, although nobody else left. And then we moved into the loft. Also, the benefit was, the loft was only on the second floor. And I was walking up two - five - four flights of stairs with - and I had already gotten pregnant with Jennifer. So I was looking for --

MR. BROWN: Right, a little more comfort.

MS. LOCKWOOD: It wasn't easier. But it was possible. That's all.

MR. BROWN: You mentioned that Hy Swetzoff and Sidney Kanegis --

MS. LOCKWOOD: And Seymour - right.

MR. BROWN: Were there a good many dealers at that time?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Boris Mirski.

MR. BROWN: Did you get to know quite a few of them?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes, I got to know Boris. And George did a few beautiful print projects for Boris. So we always went to Boris's opening.

MR. BROWN: What was Boris like then, when you first met him?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Wonderful, wonderful. He was a man of about 65, looked like a fat Salvador Dali. He had a moustache. He was colorful, genial, charming. And he had a frame shop in the back. And Allen Fink worked for him as an accountant. And it was a tight little island.

MR. BROWN: What was Fink like then? Very much an accountant, or --

MS. LOCKWOOD: He was married to Barbara Swan. He had just gotten married to Barbara. And I think they might have had their first child, which would have been Joanna, or Erin; I'm not sure. Young couple - they lived in Newton. They had bought - just about to buy a house in Brookline. And he was going to try the gallery soon. So he opened up. He actually came to work for us while he was working for Boris, as an accountant for us, too, looking for night jobs. He was interested in developing some kind of an extra pay. It was hard, hard to make a living in those days.

MR. BROWN: But as a personality, he was not much like Boris, was he?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No. He was rather a flat personality. I don't know. I thought he was a bit naïve. I don't know what his education ever was. But he could see that the way to get on was to buy and sell. I mean, he was no stranger to commerce. So maybe he had a business school degree. And Barbara being his wife - he was a devoted husband. And she was so sick in those years with Lupus erythematosus, it was terrible. And he sold (inaudible) with her. (Inaudible) he was a hardworking guy, not a very good personality.

MR. BROWN: What about Boris? Did he have quite a good reputation? We know that he some of the major Boston-area artists of the day.

MS. LOCKWOOD: He had Baskin. And he had Elbert Weinberg, a wonderful artist.

MR. BROWN: Elbert Weinberg?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yes. And he was a good artist. And he had the more florid expressionists of the Jewish movement. I can't remember some of it. I went to one of the shows there of the artists. But I can remember some sculptors. Oh, Richard Boyce, he had. He had people that had a certain stylish - how do you say it? I don't know. Well, he picked up the Margaret Brown Gallery people. He liked a sure thing. He liked an artist that was a little older, that had a bunch of collectors. And why not? It makes sense, doesn't it?

MR. BROWN: Yeah. Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I liked Boris. You could tell he was a bit of a shark.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: He always said he wanted to deflower maidens in back garden for his sculpture garden. He thought that would be great, to open up this little sculpture garden in the back yard and deflower a maiden. And we said, "Oh, are you're going to have to deflower one every month as you open it up?" And he said, "Wouldn't that be great?" [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: He knew how to tell a good story on himself. In that sense, he was probably more like some of the New York gallery dealers than Boston, who was a little staid.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: He may have been the first Jewish merchant on Newbury Street. Seymour Swetzoff and his brother had a gallery on Huntington Avenue, where the Westin Hotel is now. But it was small (inaudible) because it was mostly a frame shop cum gallery, whereas Boris was a gallery cum frame shop.

MR. BROWN: And was Newbury Street still quite chic in those days?

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was a few expensive clothing stores and linen shops and pottery shops. It was the carriage trade for the Yankees. You know, it was just the carriage trade.

MR. BROWN: Right, right, right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Wasn't much else.

MR. BROWN: Of course, Huntington was a bit off to the side.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Huntington - the Prendergast brothers had a print shop on Huntington Avenue.

MR. BROWN: It was always a little to the - on the edge.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Huntington was more --

MR. BROWN: It was not the carriage trade.

MS. LOCKWOOD: S.S. Pierce was on Huntington.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: So you could get - wherever the Yankees would go to do their monthly shopping. If you had a shop to the right of that, you could sell those.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was a nice address, but it was more - it was trolley cars and -- it was more raw on Huntington, whereas if it was on Newbury Street, it was more enclosed. Ron, Liam Ron, the architect says that streets that have shops on both sides are much more safe. And you know, there was a huge thoroughfare, this huge open space, raw open space on Huntington Avenue.

MR. BROWN: On Huntington, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You got the feeling of frontier, whereas Newbury Street was more gentile. So I would think that a lady, like a (inaudible) who was walking up Newbury Street would feel better about shopping in a curio shop on lower Newbury than she would going into Seymour's shop on Huntington.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I used to see Chinese bronzes for sale on Huntington Avenue, fantastic stuff. But you had to really - they were more like thrift shops.

MR. BROWN: What were the Swetzoffs like? They were sort of the toniest thing on Huntington, right?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I would say they have master drawings and they had - yeah, they had good stuff. They had a good eye. They probably cannibalized books. They had books and prints. And Seymour was framing. And Hy was peddling the - you know, probably (inaudible) page fragments and stuff like that. I mean, you could get very nice Chinese prints, Japanese prints. You could get Tibetan this and that's, fragments of fabrics. The Yankees always had very good taste in art, because they had the good stuff coming in from the China trade.

MR. BROWN: By air, isn't it?

MS. LOCKWOOD: And so how would I, a 19-year-old girl, be seeing this three-footed Chinese pot, which I still regret that I didn't buy? You know, ritual vessels.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And terrific - the Bernat (phonetic) family always was known for collecting their white ware way back when. You know, Celadon.

MR. BROWN: And then Swetzoffs applied some of that?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, they could see stuff.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: If you went in to deliver a frame to somebody, and some old lady was selling things, you'd buy it. You'd buy it. You know?

MR. BROWN: What kind of --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Chinoiserie.

MR. BROWN: What kind of personality was Hyman Swetzoff?

MS. LOCKWOOD: What they call feverish personality, excitable. Probably drug-related. I think he was on speed to stay thin. It was, you know - he was always in a sweat. And he wore - I never had seen anybody wear what they call a guinea pepper, you know, gold chain with a corn on it. Do you know what that is?

MR. BROWN: Oh, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: The Italian hairdressers wear them.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, I said, "Why is Hyman wearing a guinea pepper around his neck?" But he was into the gay boys, the rough trade.


MS. LOCKWOOD: You know what I'm talking about?


MS. LOCKWOOD: The homosexual boys who were the hairdressers who were - they have a certain rough, Chelsea-like style, you know, open-shirted, the hair. And then here was Hyman sitting in his gallery on Newbury Street looking like an Italian hairdresser. But he wanted to dress like them because those were his love objects.

MR. BROWN: Right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And so --

MR. BROWN: Well, you suggest by saying "feverish" that it was hard to be very low key and all with him - informal? Was he always sort of turned on?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, the last time I saw him alive, I went in with an artist who knew him at the Museum School. And we had printed one of her broadsides with a Ferlinghetti poem. And we went in to say hello to him, and he was hopped up. And you know, he had some beautiful drawings spread out. And he just - "Isn't this marvelous?" And it was an Edwardian or something beautiful, you know, on blue paper. I can remember it, with the rosy chalk and the white chalk. And she was rich. Her name was Eila Hershon. She lived in Düsseldorf. And she was on the scene in Europe. And she would have bought something if she felt like it. And she was doing that society chat-chat-chat with him. So I just stood there waiting for them to have their little visit, you know, and impress each other with how well they had done.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm. And Hi was capable of that, too.

MS. LOCKWOOD: He was very charming and very urbane - you know, pretty. He had beautiful black curly hair, and he had a beautiful profile, very pretty man. Thick glasses, hyper-thyroid eyes. But you know, he was charming. He was a fawnlike. I mean, it's pretty hard to be a fawn at the age of 40, but he was doing a good job of it. [Laughter] And then he was gone in about three weeks from that. But I thought he was - she said he probably was on speed to keep his weight down.


MS. LOCKWOOD: And she knew. She was a friend of Frances Bacon, the painter in London. And he was always on speed to keep his weight down. So my assumption was that people know what they're talking about until they are proved not to.

MR. BROWN: Yeah, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, everybody was taking speed then. And it was great. You could eat and drink as much as you want to, and you just were on this awful stuff. But you could take people's pulses. Oh god, that was terrible. How ignorant.

MR. BROWN: Hm, hm. What about his brother, Hy's brother? He was the framer? Was he quite a different figure?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Oh, he was a mystical. Father of two boys. And he just meditated. And his drug was the gurus. He was amazing, a very nice man, brilliant, wonderful hand skills with the framing. And he did framing for Goodspeeds for years. And so I always knew him very well because we were in the same group together. And I'd go up and visit him on my lunch hour when I worked. And I'd watch him do the frames. I'm a connoisseur of frames as a result. You know, the silk mats, the French borders. There's nothing like it.

MR. BROWN: You mentioned also Sidney Kanegis.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I liked Sidney.

MR. BROWN: Where was his gallery then?

MS. LOCKWOOD: On Newbury Street also. And he was married to Eleanor. And they were getting divorced. It was bitter. And --

MR. BROWN: Eleanor was what?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Eleanor Kanegis, who then had a gallery of her own. Eleanor was his wife. And Eleanor and George, there was some understanding there that maybe they would have an affair. But then I came along. So I put (inaudible) to that one. And Eleanor had a nice daughter, Juliana. And she had a gallery where the fancy restaurant is now on (inaudible) Street or Fairfield Street, L'Espalier. She had a very nice apartment there and a gallery of Old Masters, too. I mean, anyone that's ever been in the art business, you learn how to be in the art business if you're married to someone that's in the art business, you know? And she still remains that, I think, a little bit. Then Sidney married his secretary, Gunilla, who was a beautiful Swede, I think. A Swede? Yeah. And Sidney was fun. He was a good guy. He was a wild man. These guys could have been record entrepreneurs or gallery dealers; it was the hustle. They really were good at the hustle.

MR. BROWN: Ah. Very good.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I mean, salesmen.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, if you're a young, hot-shot guy and you're coming up in Boston, in the west end of Boston, the Jewish ghetto, you're going to get into one of the selling games because there was no way to make a living better than to be selling something that you could make an awful lot of money on each transaction.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And so art - if they went to art school, they would end up being framers, and then boom, they're gallery guys. You know, it was traditional. And you didn't have to go like, you know, you've got a doctorate in art history. But Jewish guys or Irish guys didn't have - or Italian guys didn't have that option of staying in school longer. You had to make your time count. And I thought they were all very, very good at what they did. I see it as a traditional route out of the working-class life. You know, there's an awful lot of money in art.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Without being dishonest.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: Or, with only minor dishonesty. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: They were sometimes slow to pay, weren't they? I've heard of conflicts with some of their artists.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, you know, the artist should find the most honest dealer. And the word was around, you know. If you didn't like something - if you threatened to leave and they didn't pay you, well, you should leave, you know?

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think - I don't know about Sidney. I thought he - he must have - he kept his artists. So he must have paid them. A lot of sour grapes because a lot of artists couldn't get taken on.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Because there are only so many shows you can have a year.

MR. BROWN: Sure. And these dealers would stick like candy. They didn't want to clog up their stable with people who --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, you wanted somebody that was brilliant and productive. You didn't want somebody that had neurotic conflicts about selling. It's the same with publishing. If you want to take on a writer, you want them to be able to produce a novel every two years.

MR. BROWN: Right. Right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: The great American way, you know? Pragmatic esthetics.

MR. BROWN: Now, you were getting, in a sense, more involved with this whole world, not only having married George, but --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Having a gallery of my own.

MR. BROWN: You had a gallery, then, right away?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Soon, because the space was there. And it was a practical matter. Zanova Gallery had, you know, made this gallery space. So we could have print shows. So I slowly learned how to have a show every three weeks. So I would sort of interview artists. And if I liked their work, I'd take it and give them a show. But it was a very haphazard, catch-as-catch-can. You know? I didn't like much of the printmaking world, actually. I would have - because it always seemed to me too crass and too hokey, the art that I was seeing the silk-screens and so forth. I'd rather have had the art from the print dealers who would let me have shows, the School of Paris stuff or the Picassos. I would rather show the European prints, the Gauguins, the Gauguin restrikes and stuff like that because when you have a bigger gamut to choose from, I mean, you have more interesting art. I thought that the individual American artists weren't too interesting, you know, including the - I think I had a show of Baskin's full time. I got to know it pretty well. And I would rather do a group show and have, you know, a different - a potpourri, an anthology. I think it was much more interesting. You educate more if you do that.

MR. BROWN: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And people are - you know, most art printmakers couldn't give you a new show every two years anyway. They were - their art wasn't moving fast - it wasn't developing fast enough to be interesting to me.

MR. BROWN: When you said earlier, you didn't care that much for the printmaking world, you meant the morass of contemporary American printmaking, for the reasons you've just given?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I thought it was a bit --

MR. BROWN: You wished to have cast your nets broadly.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Platitudinous. Yeah, I wished to have more international kind of stock.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Which I can understand why people have the Old Masters and then they'll have a little of this and a little of that from every country, because printmaking is a pedestrian concern. It's artists trying to enlarge their scope of their paintings. You know, like you can't sell that many paintings, so do prints.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You get spoiled. You like to see a lot of other things.

MR. BROWN: When did you set up this gallery or start to?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Very soon after we moved in there in 1962, I think it was '62-'63. So we opened up with family shows of - from the print - you know, the print dealers' bins, I would put together a show. Or I would have an Italian or a Japanese, whoever. You know, whoever came along.

MR. BROWN: Did you travel around and look for these prints?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No. They came to me. They'd send letters and say, "Can we come and show you work?" And then if I liked it - you know. And then artists that would work in the shop, I'd give them exhibits. It wasn't a foregone conclusion that I would give somebody an exhibit if they were doing prints, because a lot of artists, we would never give a show to because they were just too --

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah. Too boring. We would take their money and print their prints. But doesn't mean we'd have to give them shows.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. You had to keep a little bit of distance.

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was a lot of distance. I mean, if they weren't doing interesting work - and George would browbeat me, and I would sometimes refuse. And I had to do all the writing and the mailing, and he would design the brochures, which were gorgeous things of great appeal. People always saved them. But, no. We gave Mike Mazur a couple of shows. A lot of them, I didn't - I was not convinced by silkscreen, and I'm still not convinced that it's an art form. And we had these artists, women artists or men artists doing these silkscreens - boring, boring. I didn't like tourist art, and I wouldn't have these landscapes by these people. I was tending towards minimalism myself. I was tending towards less on the page rather than seven- or eight-color silkscreen prints.

MR. BROWN: (Inaudible)

MS. LOCKWOOD: By Jeana Dale Bearce or by Jack Muench, too, that I particularly didn't favor.

MR. BROWN: You felt they were just sort of showing --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Hack, hack art. You know, what you see every time you go to a summer gallery on the Cape.

MR. BROWN: Right, right.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And you see these terrible, terrible works. It was an education for me, you know, to be the purveyor.

MR. BROWN: Well, you were obviously getting self-educated very quickly, right?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah. Well, yeah. You see the work. You see three or four artists a day coming in and doing work. I was appreciating their personality, and I was appreciating their work.

MR. BROWN: So you'd be right there. You'd go into the workshop and see them.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I'd be serving them coffee and seeing them developing these things. They'd bring in their portfolios. I'd look - I learned what a good drawing was, fast, I'll tell you that. I mean, it's like being an Oriental rug dealer. If you handle 2000 Oriental rugs, you are going to know what a good rug is by the end of the year. There's nothing like dealing in constant blocks of things to make you have a good eye.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, esthetically, I don't know. I think I've just been interested in esthetics since. And being a poet, I had my own thing going. And - but still, if I want to write poetry, I can read art criticism, it makes me inspired. I'm devoted to the history of art.

MR. BROWN: Why do you think you are?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, I don't know.

MR. BROWN: You get an idea that --

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think it's just a wonderful way of looking at history, through the prism of art. You know, it's very magical. It's a magical kaleidoscope. And you know, intellectual history in the United States is very interesting. And art history is even more interesting. My brother being a political analyst, he's interested in the politics. I'm really interested in paintings. Now, I have four children that are painters. So I guess something - it must seem like I'm very close to the fount. I felt like being married to George, he was a really interesting artist, and a minor artist because he didn't have long enough to develop. But I'm interested in how many gallery dealers have children that are painters, you know? Aaron Fink.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Better than going into law or medicine, I'll tell you that - more interesting.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: If we can both agree.

MR. BROWN: Do we want to stop that for a minute?


MR. BROWN: This will be the second interview with Margo Lockwood, Brookline, Massachusetts, September 15, 1992. It's on.


MR. BROWN: We can do it like that. However you want to.


MR. BROWN: Do you want to try --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Shall I just --

MR. BROWN: Yeah. We'll see how it's going right now.

MS. LOCKWOOD: All right. We'll talk for a few minutes.

MR. BROWN: Sure.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And then see how it registers.

MR. BROWN: Okay. Well, this is - we're starting - continuing the interview. This is September 15, 1992. And I thought we'd just start this morning talking about Impressions Workshop, which you cofounded with your husband George Lockwood in 1960.


MR. BROWN: How did that get underway?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think I went over with you the saga of George coming to Boston and meeting a woman, finding out about an existing graphic workshop on Scotia Street, which was a little street behind - parallel to Boylston Street, where an artist named Kenneth McKenzie, who I think went to the Museum School, had set up presses and was printing lithography, I think, and etching, hoping to get some business as an edition printer. George met his girlfriend named Martel Marsanne, who was a sometime-exotic dancer, artist-model, a woman of about 39 who was, in the parlance of the time, "hot to trot."

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: She wanted to have another boyfriend who would run the presses for her. So I never was quite sure how much of a boyfriend - or how much trotting George did when he met her. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: But she did - they did have - she was living there on Scotia Street and George was running the presses. He was living - I think he was living there, too. She went off in January to do the art circuit of the art schools from Maine to Florida.

MR. BROWN: You mean as a model?

MS. LOCKWOOD: As a model. And she was on the road. And within a month of her leaving, I had met George and we started our romance. George was giving it the old college try with quite a few artistic women of Boston. But I think my relative youth and inexperience in the ways of the world - he wanted to get married and have a family. He had decided to do that. So I guess I was the candidate.

MR. BROWN: Was that a fairly deliberate decision in those days, say, for a young artist like George's time?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He had already been married once.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. But to have a family?

MS. LOCKWOOD: So - he was one of four. And he wanted to have the same kind of a family, in some atavistic way, that he had had. So I think when he met me, with my three brothers - he was from a family of three boys and a girl. And here I was, a girl with three brothers. So there was a symmetry.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And he liked my mother and father. They were colorful, Irish working people. Cultured - my mother was cultured and my father was colorful, let's put it that way.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: And he felt at home. And so it was a very easy decision. And I know that there was some disappointed women around Boston. I heard some of them, from time to time, that they had had expectations of marrying George. So that was nice. I got a prize in the sweepstakes, the marriage sweepstakes.

MR. BROWN: Yeah, yeah. So you were married, was this in '60 or '59?

MS. LOCKWOOD: In '60, married in St. Mary's Church.

MR. BROWN: Right here in Brookline?

MS. LOCKWOOD: In Brookline, yeah.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And then we had Jimmy, abruptly in October. So you can see what catapulted us to such a quick decision. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: [Laughter] But you were already - this very year is the year you set up the workshop?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, what happened was, there was a lot of - it was really chaotic. This woman came back in February, found out that George was carrying on with me, picked up a sculpture and threw it at him, almost gave him a concussion, told him not to come back to the Scotia Street workshop, and locked the doors on him. And he had an edition that he had printed for IGAS, [International Graphic Arts Society], that he was going to get $1200 for. And he had to get in there and get that edition and ship it off because he didn't have that much money. So he used my - the lawyer that I was working for, he used my lawyer to get a junction and made a settlement with the woman. He ended up buying the presses and freeing up the edition so that he could ship it, a week before we got married. Interestingly enough, the lawyers that I worked for, the two lawyers, a wonderful Jewish man named Isidore Bloom and a Gregory Moore Canyon - well, one of them had worked on this woman's divorce case. He knew all about her. He had inside knowledge of this woman's odd personality, rambunctious personality. So he was able to negotiate with her. And so I think for about (inaudible) hundred dollars, George got all the presses. And he had to just move them out of there. So we needed a loft, and he found the loft on Stanhope Street, where a woodworker was - and a designer - it wasn't the time yet in Boston for artists to move into industrial spaces, although, knowing New York as he did, that they had been doing that all through the '50s. So this was 1960, and he took a lease for 80 dollars a month on the second floor of 27 Stanhope Street. It was above an auto body shop, terrible fumes. And so we lived around the corner. And he was able to start with a letter - a Colts Armory letterpress, a proof press that he got from Meriden Gravure for a song, maybe for 200 dollars. What else? A beautiful cherry bedded antique lithograph press from McKenzie, and a Starwheel etching press from McKenzie. The Starwheel etching press was prized because I think it was 28 inches wide. It was a very big press. And we then later got another press from the Brookline Museum, another etching press. And the Washington proof press was wonderful. I really loved that proof press, which was small and it had a big finial on top. It really looked like something from the eighteenth century. So that was a - that enabled him to print wood engravings. The Colts Armory was to do production letterpress printing. The etching presses were to teach etching on. And they weren't dangerous. You could have - you could imagine having students that were ignorant and they couldn't crush their hands in a Starwheel hand operated etching press. I mean, you just couldn't get - even a mangle from a washing machine would be more dangerous, which is what a lot of people were printing on. Did you ever see any of that?

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: A Maytag washing machine --

MR. BROWN: With the rollers, yeah, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah, you could feed the paper and a rubber pad through the mangle, the wringer. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: Yeah, then his aim, then, was to what? Provide a facility for other artists, print himself, and to teach, right?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He thought - he loved printing with engravings up at Baskin's.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And I think that he thought --

MR. BROWN: He's just been up at Baskin's Gehenna press before this, hadn't he?

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was the inimitable force of example. I mean, he had seen a beautiful print shop in action. And he started methodically nibbling away at getting the equipment, cheap. So you know, you could go around to the wharves of Boston and find beautiful antique presses, proof presses, and equipment, press equipment, then. There was a man down on the wharves named Cunningham, who was really a wonderful old man, about 80. And he would keep an eye out for those kind of things that the artists wanted because everything was being shipped off to Africa, to newspaper offices in Africa because they - as the new technology came in, there's nothing faster than print technology, for a change. Some patent man told me that once. So as soon as the letter presses were supplanted by offset presses, off the letter presses went to the Third World. Well, they don't even call it the Third World there.

MR. BROWN: No, no.

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was called the Heart of Darkness or something.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: So you could - at the wharves, you could take the stuff that was being shipped and just buy it for a song. There was a man called Craftsman Machinery, Steven Alpert, a big art collector, and his father before him a big art collector. And they would also break down print shops, and they knew how to get rid of the printing equipment. They had sources all over the world, come to buy - they knew how to reconfigure it. They had so much equipment. They were in the (inaudible) here. I always couldn't abide that man. He was the most venal businessman. And yet he wormed his way into George's affection and would come over all the time. And he was like that. You know, like what makes - he was a hyperactive, young guy that wanted to be a big success. And he - you knew - you felt that, even though he had been raised in Newton, that he wouldn't stop at anything to do a deal or to screw somebody. And he still is operating in the art world, with Rauschenberg and people like that. He still is around. He's addicted to artists. And he loves to schmooze with them and to hang out.

MR. BROWN: Yeah. But he's someone that - because he was useful, also, though, wasn't he? He was able to find equipment?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah. Well, he would put George on a - let's put it this way. George would buy whatever he wanted.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Like printing fonts of type, rollers, coins, chases, all that stuff, all the subsidiary equipment for the letter press, and heavy equipment, too, and presses. And then Steve would give him like a line of credit. And then Steve would come and take prints.


MS. LOCKWOOD: It was like letting somebody go to the track and bet on horses, and then say, "Well, I only need a pint of blood this week." [Laughter] And it was just like one of these kind of people. Leonard Baskin got involved with a man like that named Shlickman who was in the Empire State Building. And he - these money men, they can, you know, wave the greenbacks, and the artists just follow them right into the trough. But I suppose it's the way of the world. So he helped. I mean, he helped in a way. Just it came in the - it's too bad that you have to deal with certain kinds of people. They have to think that they're getting the better of you. And they have to let you see it. Plenty of people get the better of you every day. But if they're subtle and discreet, they don't have to crow about it. They'll get their deal, you get what you need, and so forth.

MR. BROWN: But those such things perturbed George? Not really? You suggested earlier that he liked Alpert.

MS. LOCKWOOD: He liked him, yeah. He didn't mind him. He was not put off by collectors and their venality and by their obsessions. He thought it was entertaining. [Laughter]


MS. LOCKWOOD: And he was used to a certain kind of crass, businesslike behavior because he was in the New York design world. He was doing book covers. And he was designing. And he was doing fabric design and wallpaper design. So I guess maybe everybody in the art world , they've got to tell a story like they really did that artist.

MR. BROWN: Yeah, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I mean, maybe it's all part of the mystique of it.

MR. BROWN: Were there many --

MS. LOCKWOOD: (Inaudible)

MR. BROWN: Up here, were there many collectors at that time in the early '60s that you can recall?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Jerry Goldberg was a wonderful man. He had a wholesale dress business. He collected Hyman Bloom, Jack Wiltz, Howard Schafer, George, Al Filet. He liked late German expressionism as the Boston artists were doing it. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: Yeah. That's a pretty good way of capsulizing, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think that the Museum School was in the last, the receding tide of German expressionism, the figure, those bold Beckman colors. If you ever saw Beckman, you would not be convinced by Jack Wiltz. Or if you ever saw - I mean, the BU people had a certain abstract look. And the Museum School had a certain yongkaks (phonetic) with the Scrifito (phonetic) portrait look, you know?

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: I mean, now you can see it easily. But when the stuff was coming out, it looks like raw sausage as it's coming out of the machine. But you know, even sausage as it gets aged gets a little better.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: Well, did things start up pretty fast? You had your child in October of '60. And then, was the business already consuming?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, it was limping along. I would think if we made 200 dollars a month, we would be overjoyed. He had a 5000-dollar-a-year salary from the Mass Art.

MR. BROWN: Oh, he was teaching at Mass College of Art?

MS. LOCKWOOD: He was teaching at Mass Art two or three days a week. And that was our paycheck. I mean, the artists were starting to come over and look at things. But George was doing a few prints.

MR. BROWN: Of his own?

MS. LOCKWOOD: And we had hired already Jim Huntington, who was delivering glass from a paint store one day, from a hardware store. So we hired him. And he became a sculptor and a painter, had had shows at the Whitney biannual.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Jim was about 19. And we hired various apprentices, and we gave them paltry -but we couldn't afford anything. We gave them 20 dollars a week, 30 dollars a week. And Mass Art students, Ira Friedlander, various artists - and the effect of that workshop on those artists was to validate them as artists. They never - they worked away for a pittance. They became more and more serious. It was very noteworthy to me to see that. They would work for a song because they could see that they were part of something. John Brennan, who taught at the Museum School for years, taught lithography. He started with us. And the obnoxious Herb Fox.

MR. BROWN: Fox was there quite awhile, wasn't he?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Too long. He was too long there after he was there a month, as far as I was concerned. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: I see.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Talk about venal. I mean, in for the main chance, you know. He claimed he had been in veterinary school. But he was just an operator looking for an operation.

MR. BROWN: These guys all functioned as printers or as helpers?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Printers, yeah, printers.

MR. BROWN: Printing? Well, what kind of work was coming in in the early days?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Oh, we did --

MR. BROWN: Would artists come with - and they wanted things printed?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Oh, well, Barbara Swan came and did some prints of - she did Broadside, and she did some of her - what did she do, bottles? I don't think she was doing bottles yet. What was she doing? I remember that sort of --


MALE VOICE: Silkscreens, but original works. Our first show was by Carlos Merida. I think that was in September of 1946, I believe. That was an elaborate opening with oodles of food. And Mirski's openings were always great parties, yeah. They were wonderful parties with so much to eat you couldn't believe it. And his wife prepared most of the food, you know. She was Italian. And she could - she sure could cook.

INTERVIEWER: Who would come? What -

MALE VOICE: There was a large mailing list. It was a mailing list that I think perhaps Hyman Swetzoff had brought over from the Institute of Modern Art. And it consisted of all kinds of museum directors and collectors, especially in Boston; a good representation of, in those days what could be called Boston society, or at least the movers and wheelers, dealers in - I don't know, the clubs and the organizations that would be thought of as being important in the city of Boston.

INTERVIEWER: Mirski had moved from Charleston?

MALE VOICE: He had moved from Charleston.

INTERVIEWER: He had a frame shop?

MALE VOICE: He had a frame shop. He had -

INTERVIEWER: Did you know that well?

MALE VOICE: Yes, I remember seeing it.

INTERVIEWER: Did he also have a bit of an art gallery there, too?

MALE VOICE: He did, yes, 106 Charles Street, I think it was. No, a hundred and -

INTERVIEWER: What was Mirski like when you first met him? What was he - can you describe his personality back in the 1940s?

MALE VOICE: Oh, god. Now, there was - I said Hyman Swetzoff was exotic. Mirski was even more so. Mirski was a very interesting person. He was short, rotund, balding, immensely powerful, strong. He was physically strong. He could lift all kinds of stuff. He was ambitious. He was immensely charming. He was a scoundrel. I loved working for him because we always had all kinds of situations that turned out to be hilarious. These are all elements of slapstick comedy working for Mirski.

INTERVIEWER: Could you give an example?

MALE VOICE: Well, probably not. [Laughter] But he would descend - the problems with Mirski were not with the gallery so much as with the frame shop, because he was a great procrastinator and he would also promise things - "I'll have it ready for you Monday." And of course, the client would come in on Monday, and the work was not ready. He would begin to dissemble, and he would create a real fantasy scenario of how to get out of delivering the material on time - picture frame or the mat or, you know, the framed work. And he would put the -


MS. LOCKWOOD: She's worked on them through her whole career. I think she did a portrait of B.J. Anders. I know she did.

MR. BROWN: Of Steve Andrus' wife?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Wife, B.J., a lovely portrait. And she was only probably 32. And she was - got one of those Radcliffe Bunting grants, the first one, for two grand. And Anne Sexton got one. And they worked together a little bit, and they became fast friends. So we were able to get - I found an Anne Sexton poem in The Atlantic, and I thought we should do it. Like from 1963. So Barbara was one of the early ones. And Mike Mazur came along because George had gotten a job at RISD. So Mike did a portfolio. And Edna Hibel.

MR. BROWN: Was Mike Mazur at RISD at that time?


MR. BROWN: So they got to know him?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, he had been a student of George's at Amherst, undergraduate. And he had gone to Yale after George did. Also in the late - he must have gone in the early '60s. He got a job at RISD, his first job, teaching graphics, I think. I think he got a degree in graphics under Peterdi. He was always very influenced by Gabor Peterdi, very. And let's see. I'm trying to think. I should refresh myself with a list of the artists. I remember a lot of old ladies would come in, like Elizabeth Saltonstall. And they would do a small, tasteful print.


MS. LOCKWOOD: And then we had these classes. So some of the people that were coming to the classes would end up coming in. They were these wealthy young suburbanites. I think Susan Hodes, who has a big collection that has been exhibited in catalogs. And various young - they used to call them the young marrieds, women that had a lawyer husband. And they were at home, and they hadn't had - or maybe they had had the first kid, but they wanted to do something significant.

MR. BROWN: Uh-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was like, either that or go to the museum. So they came to (inaudible) in the morning. And so we had these shleppers coming through, schlepping around.

<>MR. BROWN: [Laughter]</>

MS. LOCKWOOD: And then some artists from Europe - women - women were particularly - not -- George was very good working with women. I think he was - obviously, he wasn't sexist, and he was kindly. And he had a sister. He was good to his mother. He was good to me. And he had a wife and a child. So it was a nonsexist environment for women to come to work in.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Now, that's important because a lot of workshops, they're very much a very - like Bob Blackburn was nice. He was a black artist, and he had a wonderful workshop in New York. But I think women were still being freaked if you went to a place where it was too much like a garage, whether it was too many male signifiers. And I think that I was there, and I would serve coffee to everybody. And it was a family setting, very congenial.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: So we had Edna Hibel coming in, doing her kitsch.

MR. BROWN: Was she already --

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, she came along about maybe '64 or '65.

MR. BROWN: She'd had some prominence already for what she did?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, not really. I don't think she did. Her husband had gone bankrupt with Plotkins Department Store. And the were looking to try to figure out a way to keep afloat and keep their house. And Edna was in her late 40s. And she was always doing these kind of paintings. And no, they haven't changed through the years. Some Christian Scientist was hipped on her. And they kept getting - at the time, he had bought 100 paintings. So they figured, do some prints. I don't know what the first initial investment was. But she started turning out these same genre paintings, genre prints that she had been doing in painting. So she used George's sophisticated design sense. She would ask him for help. "Borders," he said. He told her to study Oriental rugs to see that, the more borders that the rug had, the more valuable the rug was. So she started with these ornate borders on the edges of her prints. It was like, if you went to a frame shop and you put 12 frames on one painting.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter] It would enhance something.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, no, the - she had a paucity of ideas.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: So if you have your little Madonna and child always being treated the same way - then she did them in ethnics.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Like she did the Vietnamese, the Cambodian mother and child.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: I mean, totally inappropriate. You know, you take the Christian iconography and you put it through the Korean and Chinese to the Navajo. I mean, you name it. But I was always amused that she took those - that border idea and did it so slavishly. She was always needing to have an esthetic input, because it was just - I mean, you could see that if a person was able to deal with the two dimensional, the picture plane, with vitality and originality, they would have broken out and done something. But, you know. She was stuck in the greeting card mode. And she's still hacking away. I mean, she's probably still alive. But her husband and the family, they used to drive her in. She was like the queen bee. They were trying to extract as much glandular money secretions as possible from this woman.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: They kept her like a queen. They drove her in. They picked her up. They lavished love on her. And it was wonderful because then her mother opened a gallery. Then they moved to Palm Beach. It was an incredible commercial enterprise.

MR. BROWN: So how did the workshop people respond to her? I mean, at least it was income? She would be paying?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No, they were - that's what I liked about the '60s. There was an unfailing politeness. And even though Edna was a hack, she was paying our bills. You know, she was our cash cow. (Inaudible) our cash cow.

MR. BROWN: What would someone like Edna or Barbara Swan, would they pay a fee for the use of the facility?

MS. LOCKWOOD: No. They paid by the print. You know, we'd do it so many times to the press, so much money. It was probably at the time, when I think of it, maybe, each print maybe $1.60 a hit.

MR. BROWN: Okay.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, so you could do eight, ten colors at edition of a hundred. And it would be 800 dollars. Let's say it would be 1000 dollars for an edition of 100, with eight colors. I mean, it makes me think - well, stamps only cost four cents at that time.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: So we were happy because that production could be done in about three weeks. As soon as the paint - as soon as the ink dried on the bathing work, and it was all laid out on screens - hopefully, it would be drying - they could keep running it through the press. So then they would turn around and frame it. They would frame the multiple bordered Madonna in the most Baroque, gross, silver-leaf, blue, linen, et cetera, deep molding frame, which then they could sell to the nouveaux-rich out in the burbs.

MR. BROWN: Uh-huh, uh-huh, uh-huh.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And they probably were selling them for 400-500 apiece. And having been in the department store business, they knew how to have a product line. And then they put it through the changes of coloration. It's a wall ornament, wall ornaments.

MR. BROWN: But this was not - she was not --

MS. LOCKWOOD: You're not going to shoot your cash cow.

MR. BROWN: She was your cash cow, but she was not typical? I mean, mainly, it was people doing fairly serious work?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Yeah, yeah. It was pretty serious.

MR. BROWN: And there was really nothing quite like it in this area at all, was there?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I don't think there was anything from Maine to New York.


MS. LOCKWOOD: The only other one that we knew of was Bob Blackburn in New York, who was a wonderful guy and who had been devoted to printing since the '40s. And he was down in like Bank Street area, I think. And then - I'm not a New Yorker, so I'm not sure. And then there was Tamarind, who was starting up with June Lee. She was amassing some printing presses. And Tatyana Grossman, about two years after Lee started - no, actually, she bought some litho press, litho stones from us in June or July of 1960. And that was the basis of her (inaudible) New York, Grossman Editions, Limited.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: She had the New York School. You know, at the time, if you could sell a print for 65 dollars with four colors, you know, you thought you were lucky. The artists (inaudible) they're just trying to do their thing. You know, the print dealers came - started to come out. (Inaudible)

MR. BROWN: Well, now, you started. George had his jobs.


MR. BROWN: And you were taking in, in the early days, say 200 a month. But then you also then came along, a person who helped further fund the place, Steven Andrus. How did that come about? And when did he come, more or less?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think it was - well, Steve and B.J., as a young suburban couple from Wellesley and later - yeah, from Wellesley, they would - they came in to George's printing classes in the various media.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: So they already knew George when I met him, because we went on our honeymoon at their house in (inaudible). So Steve was a luncheon. He would come for lunch about once every three weeks. And I would feed them vegetarian goulash. And he liked the scene. And he liked going in and - he had a scientific bent, being a doctor. And he used to enjoy sitting with the printers. And he got a kick out of the goings-on. I think it was much more interesting for him than the medical school or the School of Public Health, because it was unbuttoned. You know, it was unstuffy.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: So he'd just come to lunch. And he'd buy a drawing, or he'd look through the piles of prints in the gallery. And he'd always, you know, buy a little something. He always was helping us. He understood, I think, how marginally we were living. But I didn't mind it, and George didn't. He had suggested bankrolling a portfolio. George was always biting off more than he could chew. I think it might have been Sante Graziani's portfolio of elaborate colored lithographs of versions of Ingres'. They were pastiches of Ingres' drawings at the Fogg. Sante Graziani was the head of the Worcester Art School. And he was doing the Ingres drawings as op art experiments. It was a very strange conception because he was a masterful draftsman. He could draw anything. He would double a portrait of Ingres. And then he would dress up the portrait in op art, checkerboard effect. It was marvelously silly. And it was playful.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS LOCKWOOD: But it was almost like you'd take a beautiful etching of Marianne and then put decals from the five-and-ten on it. It was that discordant. You know, say, or a Piranesi etching and then do day-glo magic markers. It went - Sante's portfolio, I don't know how it did. But anyway, Steve got this idea. And he probably put in - he said, "Well, I could put in a couple of thousand dollars and help you pay for the printing." And Sante didn't have any money. He'd gotten divorced. And it was - oh.

MR BROWN: This would have been published on speculation then?

MS LOCKWOOD: I guess so, yes.

MR BROWN: In anticipation of sales?

MS LOCKWOOD: Yes, yes. But George always was just interested in getting the work done, getting some printing for his printers to do that was refined, interesting, novel, anything but these old ladies.

MR BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm, um-hm.

MS LOCKWOOD: And he got excited about those projects. He was a man of projects. And he - we had already been - we had already printed Mike Mazur's beautiful portfolio, Images from a Locked Ward. And that was very successful for Mike, I think. So the idea of a portfolio that might sell for 1000 dollars with eight prints in it seemed like a good investment.

MR BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And the thing is, it is a good idea, as long as you have capitalization so you can wait for the four years for the thing to sell out.

MR BROWN: And that's what Andrus provided?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I guess so. I think we weren't intending to become - he started putting in funds. And we would give him a proportion of the workshop. It was done almost as if we were children playing store. All of a sudden, we were incorporating the workshop, with lawyers. And George was so cavalier. We just ran in there, looked over the things. I don't think he had his own lawyer. And we started signing over more and more to Steve.


MS. LOCKWOOD: Until maybe four or five years went by. And abruptly, as the project thickened in the drawers, the portfolios and this and that, Steve at one point then finally owned 51 percent of the Impressions because of his - the amount that he had invested. And he decided - I think he was feeling the tumult of the creative process, of George's - I mean, it's rampaging. So it's got creative artists, who is terrible to live with and terrible to work with because they don't worry about what's already been done. They don't worry about it. They want to do the next project.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know?

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, from dealing with them. So it was always, let's buy the next ream of paper. Let's develop more unique inks.

MR. BROWN: And this cost money.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, it was just the fun of doing new things.

MR. BROWN: Doing it.

MS. LOCKWOOD: Plus he had to pay - by that time, we had taken over three floors. And we were paying 340 dollars a month rent for our living space and the workshop. And we also took over the second floor, where we had bindings and - but other kinds of printings was going on on the second floor. It was like a full, up-and-running, creative maelstrom.

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: It was great. I just thought it would never end. It was almost like --

MR. BROWN: And you said that Andrus - Andrus thought that --

MS. LOCKWOOD: He was going to a psychiatrist. [Laughter]

MR. BROWN: [Laughter]

MS. LOCKWOOD: And he told him that the psychiatrist said, "You can't deal with this much creative tension. This guy is just too much for you." So Steve bought us out.


MS. LOCKWOOD: George was like - I mean, it was like seven different businesses going on there.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: There was always new people coming in.

MR. BROWN: Yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: A new concept, and, "Call Bob Dylan," and this and that. We're going to do a Bob Dylan something-or-other. I don't know. It was just - it was fun. There was no - we had already three children. And the fourth was coming along. I think Johnny had been born. So there was - George was living in the country, commuting to Boston four days a week.

MR. BROWN: George or Steve?

MS. LOCKWOOD: George. And Steve was commuting in from Cohasset. Yeah. And George was high-handed, there's no question about it. He had visions, you know? And just wanted to do everything. I think, actually - what was Steve feeling? I think Steve was feeling that it was a runaway horse, and he was just trying to get hold of the bridle or the bit.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, he couldn't see what the end would be. And I think he had gotten in - you know, it was only 50,000 dollars, when you think of it, that he gave us to walk away. He had a building in downtown Boston. He had two brick buildings, each of them four stories or three stories high, and a going print business and a gallery and a place in art history. Pretty cheap for 50,000.

MR. BROWN: But this was a few years before he got the controlling interest and then bought you out, right? It was several, some years after he first was involved?

MS. LOCKWOOD: I think that he must have gotten involved - he probably was involved with us for five years. And it was like - it was so interesting. It was always new people coming through. As artists would hear about us, they'd come up from New York. And it was interesting. I mean, it was headstrong, I must say. It was - but from what I read about other artistic ventures, like Rauschenberg's, they were all very much the same. You know, you sort of took what circumstance brought you, and word of mouth. And you found your printers. You found your binders. These artists that had been to the art schools in the '40s and '50s were tremendously gifted in lots of different media. There wasn't any sense that you just had to stay in your little narrow band.

MR. BROWN: Um-hm, um-hm.

MS. LOCKWOOD: You know, like in academe, you're supposed to hit more and more of a point and a focus and develop from that. But these were guys that were - there was a lot of Renaissance men and women - June Wayne.

MR. BROWN: June Wayne, yeah, yeah, yeah.

MS. LOCKWOOD: And Tatyana Grossman.

MR. BROWN: When did you - was the gallery, in effect, started, Impressions Gallery pretty much about the same time as you started the workshop?

MS. LOCKWOOD: Well, it was there as an existing gallery, as Zanova Gallery. And the - George said, "We'd better use that space. We're just letting the children run around there." Want to take a break?


Last updated...June 11, 2009


How to Use This Collection

Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.

Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Margaret N. Lockwood, 1992 Aug. 27 and Sept. 15. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.