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Oral history interview with Raymond Jonson, 1980 Aug. 9

Jonson, Raymond, 1891-1982

Painter, Educator, Gallery director


Collection Information

Size: Sound recording: 2 Sound cassettes; 50 Pages, Transcript

Summary: An interview of Raymond Jonson conducted 1980 Aug. 9, by Susan Platt, for the Archives of American Art.
Jonson speaks of his early work in theater design; the art scene in the 1920s; the inspiration of the Southwestern landscape; the importance of lighting in his work; the transition in his work from figurative to abstract; spirituality in his work; Santa Fe as an artistic community; arts critics; arts publications; and the social realist painters.

Biographical/Historical Note

Raymond Jonson (1891-1982) was a painter from Albuquerque, N.M. During the Depression he painted murals for several New Deal art programs. He taught at the University of New Mexico where the Jonson Gallery was erected in his honor. It houses the most complete permanent collection of Jonson's work.


These interviews are 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 others.

Language Note

English .


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

How to Use This Collection

Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Raymond Jonson, 1980 Aug. 9. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.