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Rudolf Arnheim papers, 1919-1998

Arnheim, Rudolf, 1904-2007

Author, Educator, Art historian

Collection Information

Size: 9.6 Linear feet

Summary: The papers of art historian, educator, writer and psychologist Rudolf Arnheim measure 9.6 linear feet and date from 1919 to 1998. The papers documents his career in New York, Michigan, and abroad through biographical material, correspondence, writings, lectures, diaries, printed material, and sound recordings.
Biographical material includes a bibliography, biographical sketches, contracts and agreements, sound cassettes of interviews, and other miscellaneous material.
Correspondence is with colleagues, editors, publishers, and universities on various subjects. The bulk of the correspondence is arranged by subject such as architects, art historians, dance, and film. There is correspondence with Harvard University, University of Michigan, Museum of Modern Art, and New School of Social Research, as well as various individuals such as Josef Albers, Gyorgy Kepes, and Alice Sheldon.
Writings and lectures include book reviews, articles, lecture drafts and notes, sound recordings of lectures, manuscripts, and copies of published articles.
Arnheim's diaries date from 1919 to 1987 and discuss his early life as a student in Germany and career as an educator and lecturer. Some diaries include draft writings.
Printed material includes lecture announcements, reviews, clippings, programs, brochures, assorted material from Sarah Lawrence College, and two instructional sound cassettes.

Biographical/Historical Note

Rudolf Arnheim (1904-2007) was a writer, educator, art historian and psychologist who was born in Germany and immigrated to the United States where he primarily worked in New York and Massachusetts.


The Rudolf Arnheim papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in several installments between 1974 to 1998 by Rudolf Arnheim. Arnheim also loaned material for microfilming in 1986.

Related Materials

Language Note

The collection is mostly in English and German. Some materials are in Italian and French.