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A Finding Aid to the Nan Rosenthal papers, circa 1940-2013

Nan Rosenthal papers, circa 1940-2013

Rosenthal, Nan, 1937-2014

Curator, Art historian

Collection Information

Size: 26.4 linear feet

Summary: The papers of curator Nan Rosenthal measure 26.4 linear feet and 17.1 gigabytes and date from circa 1940-2013. There is a small amount of biographical material; correspondence, mostly letters from her first husband Otto Piene; project and research files encompassing her work as a curator and historian; as well as teaching files; and thousands of slides organized by subject. Among Rosenthal's research and project files are sound recordings and transcripts from dozens of interviews Rosenthal conducted with artists including Howard Hodgkin, Anselm Kiefer, friends and family of Yves Klein, Robert Rauschenberg and friends, George Rickey, Claus Oldenburg, and Sangbin Im. In addition to paper records, the collection also includes a large number of sound recordings, video recordings, and born digital material.

Biographical/Historical Note

Nan Rosenthal (1927-2014) was a curator and art historian in New York City and Washington, D.C. who specialized in twentieth-century modern and contemporary art. Rosenthal was married to Henry B. Cortesi.


The collections was donated to the Archives of American Art in 2016 by the Nan Rosenthal and Henry B. Cortesi Estate via executor Katherine C. Armstrong.

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