Size: 1 Item Sound recording, master: 1 data compact disc (6 hr., 11 min.) 133 Pages Transcript
Summary: An interview of Richard Haas conducted 2009 Jan. 13 and Mar. 16, by Avis Berman, for the Archives of American Art's U.S. General Services Administration, Design Excellence and the Arts oral history project, at Haas' studio, in New York, N.Y.
Haas discusses his early interest in architecture; his family connection to Frank Lloyd Wright; attending Taliesin for two summers in 1955 and '56; Meeting Joseph Friebert while an undergraduate student at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; taking studio classes and experimenting with different art styles and techniques; the influence of Abstract Expressionism and Post-Impressionism on his artworks; joining the ROTC program and painting his first mural at Fort Leonard Wood, MO; viewing the murals of Thomas Hart Benton and John Steurt Curry; going to graduate school at the University of Minneapolis, MN and meeting Jack Tworkov and Peter Busa; visiting Mexico on his honeymoon and viewing the murals of "Los Tres Grandes"; teaching art at Michigan State and developing his series, Boxes; the evolution of his art while teaching at Bennington college in Vermont and the shift from architectural drawings into murals; moreover, Haas speaks about the rise of street art in the 1970s and '80s in New York; his first mural at 112 Prince Street; his collaboration with Doris Freeman; the political challenges associated with doing public art; the collaborative process between the artist and architect; the importance of location when choosing a mural and the work's relationship to its environment; furthermore, Haas discusses his GSA projects in Kansas and West Virginia; his other mural commissions, particularly White House Detention Center, 1997; and the impact of technology on the medium. Throughout the conversation, Haas speaks about fellow artists Richard Serra, James Rosinquist, Malcolm Myers, as well as architects Philip Johnson, Grant Marani and Tim Vreeland.