Skip to main content

John Jonas Gruen and Jane Wilson papers, 1909-2016

Gruen, John Jonas, 1926-2016

Photographer, Composer, Music critic, Art critic


Collection Information

Size: 25.0 linear feet

Summary: Primarily papers of John Gruen, and to a lesser degree, those of his wife, artist Jane Wilson. Included are subject, lecture, and project files, correspondence, photographs, interviews, and printed material.
Papers relating to John Gruen document his writings and photography. Included are drafts of writings, publications, photographs and images on VHS and CD for projects, exhibitions, and lectures taken by Gruen and others, interviews on cassettes and CD and interview transcripts, personal and professional correspondence with agents and editors, and printed material including publications, magazine articles and reviews, and exhibition catalogs. Papers relating to Jane Wilson consist of biographical material; teaching files and notes; personal and professional correspondence pertaining to her teaching career at Pratt, Parsons, and her later faculty appointment at Columbia, and her election to the National Academy of Design; personal business records; exhibition and sales files; notes and writings; loose sketches; photographs and slides of works of art (contained in two binders) and audio visual material including a VHS video of Jane painting, 3 helical tapes of Jane Wilson, Port Washington Library, March 3, 1979, and additional photographs of works of art by John and Jane on CDs. Also included are a camera and undeveloped film and a master set of published material on Wilson and her work.

Biographical/Historical Note

John Gruen (1926-2016) was an art critic in New York, New York. Gruen was professionally known as John Jonas Gruen. He married artist Jane Wilson (1924-2015) in 1948.


Donated 1982, 1995 and 2003 by John Jonas Gruen and Jane Wilson and in 2016 and 2017 by the Estate of Jane Wilson and John Gruen via Julia Gruen, Wilson's daughter.

How to Use This Collection

Restrictions on Access

Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center.

How to Cite This Collection

John Jonas Gruen and Jane Wilson papers, 1909-2016. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.