Scope and Contents
The papers of painter Shirley Gorelick measure 4.8 linear feet and date from 1939-2008, 2016, with the bulk of the material dating from 1939-1980s. The collection documents Gorelick's life and career through biographical material, personal and professional correspondence, scattered writings, professional files recording her involvement with art collectives and galleries owned and/or run by women, printed and photographic material, and nine sketchbooks and loose sketches.
Biographical material includes resumes and some early employment and education records. Personal correspondence primarily records the first years of Gorelick's marriage and provides insight into her early career through detailed correspondence with her husband, Leonard Gorelick. Professional correspondence is with multiple art galleries, organizations, and institutions primarily relating to exhibitions, pricing of her artwork, sales, and press reviews of her work, including by Lawrence Alloway who corresponded with Gorelick.
Scant writings include artists statements and notes as well as two papers Gorelick wrote as a student.
Professional files include price lists and an inventory of Gorelick's fine art collection, and also document her involvement with SOHO 20 and Central Hall Gallery and her contribution to The Sister Chapel installation.
Printed material documents Gorelick's extensive exhibition history through announcements, catalogs, and press reviews of her solo and group exhibitions and related awards.
Gorelick's sketchbooks comprise 9 volumes with some additional loose sketches enclosed, primarily containing figure studies in pencil. The series also includes an etching and a pencil study.
Photographic material provides what appears to be a comprehensive catalog of Gorelick's artwork from the 1960s through the 1980s, including slides and photos of many of her paintings, intaglio prints, and silverpoint drawings, as well as some of the models Gorelick worked with repeatedly. Also found are photos of Gorelick including portraits, studio photos, and photos of her with friends, colleagues, and family, and of Gorelick at events including exhibition openings and installations.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The collection was donated to the Archives of American Art in 2021 and 2022 by Jamie Gorelick, Shirley Gorelick's daughter.
Funding for the processing and digitization of this collection was provided by The Shirley Gorelick Foundation
The collection was processed, and a finding aid prepared by Stephanie Ashley in 2022 and was digitized in 2023 with funding provided by The Shirley Gorelick Foundation.