Size: 1 Sound cassette, Sound recording (90 min.), analog; 30 Pages, Transcript
Summary: An interview with Walter Feldman conducted 1998 Aug. 10, by Robert Brown, for the the Archives of American Art, in Feldman's home, Providence, R.I.
Feldman discusses attending classes as a youth, 1939-1942, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; attending Yale's School of Fine Arts, 1942; service in combat infantry in the U.S. Army, Europe, 1943-1946; completing his BFA at Yale, 1946-1950 and MFA, 1951; working as an instructor in painting at Yale until his appointment at Brown University (1953; professor 1961) where he continues to teach; exhibitions and commissions; working in painting, printmaking, mosaics, and in fine book making.
He discusses working as the sole studio art teacher at Brown University until mid-1960s; hiring of additional artist-teachers and the subsequent split of the art department between studio art and art history; bringing book arts to Brown with his establishment of the Brown/Ziggurat Press, which he directs and which mostly publishes poetry; the many visiting arists at Brown; frequent commissions which have kept him young in spirit; and working in widely divergent media: medals, mosaics, and a huge mural commission in 1976; discussion of leading examples of his handmade books, including James Schevill's poetry, "Lager Lieder" (1991), a book of concentration camp songs, and Michael Harper's "Family Sequences" (1998); broadsides he's designed, sculptural "reliqueries" to memorialize the Jewish Holocaust; the current prospering of his artists books; and his success as a teacher.