Skip to main content

Stendahl Art Galleries records, 1907-1971

Stendahl Art Galleries records, 1907-1971

Stendahl Art Galleries

Collection Information

Size: 7.5 linear feet

Summary: The records of the Los Angeles Stendahl Art Galleries measure 7.5 linear feet and date from 1907 to 1971. The collection is comprised of administrative and financial files, correspondence, exhibition files, and subject files on numerous artists, organizations, and other art-related topics. There is one scrapbook of clippings on the artist Edgar Payne.

Biographical/Historical Note

Earl Stendahl established Stendahl Art Galleries in 1911 in Los Angeles, California. Stendahl Art Galleries was founded 1911 by Earl Stendahl, and were an important part of Los Angeles' early 20th century arts scene. Initially Stendahl's focus was on California Impressionist paintings. He introduced modern art to the West Coast, before expanding into Pre-Columbian art, which became the gallery's specialty.

Provenance

The Stendahl Art Galleries records were donated by Alfred Stendahl in 1976. An album of clippings was donated by Stendahl in 1995 via Nancy Moure.

Funding

Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Smithsonian Institution Collections Care and Preservation Fund.

A Finding Aid to the Stendahl Art Galleries Records, 1907-1971, in the Archives of American Art
AAA.stenartg
Author
Finding aid prepared by Sarah Mundy
Biographical/Historical note
Earl Stendahl established Stendahl Art Galleries in 1911 in Los Angeles, California.
Earl Stendahl (1887-1966) came to Southern California from a small town in Wisconsin. He began showing young Los Angeles artists at his downtown restaurant, The Black Cat Café. He opened his gallery in The Ambassador Hotel on Wilshire Boulevard and organized shows focusing primarily on California Impressionists of the early twentieth century, including Edgar Payne, Guy Rose, William Wendt, Nicolai Fechin, and Joseph Kleitsch.
Stendahl Art Galleries also began to sell European and Latin American modern art. In 1939, Stendahl hosted one of only two non-museum exhibitions of Pablo Picasso's masterwork,
Guernica
, to benefit Spanish war orphans.
As early as 1935 Stendahl began promoting ancient artifacts from Mexico and Central America. Stendahl's first client for pre-Columbian art and artifacts was noted collector Walter Arensberg. Stendahl and the Arensburgs became friends and Stendahl helped the Arensburgs build one of the most significant collections in the U.S.
The galleries are currently owned by Ronald W. Dammann, Stendahl's grandson.
Arrangement note
The collection is arranged as 4 series.
Series 1: Administrative and Financial Files, 1923-1957 (0.4 linear feet; Box 1)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1923-1968 (2.0 linear feet; Box 1-3)
Series 3: Exhibition Files, circa 1921-1967 (0.4 linear feet; Box 3)
Series 4: Subject Files, 1907-1971 (4.6 linear feet; Box 3-8, OV 9)
Scope and Contents note
The records of the Los Angeles Stendahl Art Galleries measure 7.5 linear feet and date from 1907 to 1971. The collection is comprised of administrative and financial files, correspondence, exhibition files, and subject files on numerous artists, organizations, and other art-related topics. There is one scrapbook of clippings on the artist Edgar Payne.
Administrative and financial files concern advertising, publicity, consignments, inventory, purchases, sales, leases, and biographical information on Earl Stendahl.
The bulk of the correspondence is pre-World War II and is fairly extensive. It is with artists, organizations, collectors, art historians, galleries. Signicant correspondents include Alexander Archipenko, Federico Beltran-Masses, Alexander Calder, Federico Cantú, Jean Charlot, Couvoisier Galleries, José de Creeft, Demotte Inc., Jerome Eddy, Lillian Genthe, Arthur Hill Gilbert, George B. Guthrie, Rockwell Kent, Louis Kronberg, Gisella Loeffler, Carlos Mérida, Isamu Noguchi, Walter Pach, Diego Rivera, Waler Elmer Schofield, David Alfaro Siquieros, Ladislas Szecsi, Wildenstein & Company, and many others.
Files are found for about ten exhibitions, including
Etching and Engravings by the Old Masters
(1921),
Airview Paintings
(1930),
American Landscape Art
(1930),
Arts of New Guinea
(1964), and for exhibitions of Emil Gelhaar, Wassily Kandinsky, Sydney Laurence, and Roberto Montenegro.
Subject files are found for numerous artists, art topics, galleries, and foundations. Most of the files consist of printed materials, but there is correspondence and additional primary source material found in files for Nicolai Ivanovich Feshin, the Thomas Gilcrease Foundation, Armin Hansen, Joseph Kleitsch, Aston Knight, José Clemente Orozco, Edgar Payne, Ralph M. Pearson, Pablo Picasso, William Ritschel, Diego Rivera, Ethel B. Rose, Guy Rose, Walter Elmer Schofield, David Alfaro Siquieros, Ladislas Szecsi, William Wendt, and Ignacio Zuloaga.
Provenance
The Stendahl Art Galleries records were donated by Alfred Stendahl in 1976. An album of clippings was donated by Stendahl in 1995 via Nancy Moure.
Processing Information note
The collection was processed and a finding aid prepared by Sarah Mundy in 2016 with funding from the Smithsonian Institution's Collections Care Pool Fund, using accelerated processing strategies implemented by the Archives to increase information about and access to more of our collections. For this collection, accelerated processing included arrangement to the series, subseries and folder levels, adhering to the creator's original arrangement as much as possible. Generally, folder contents were simply verified with the original folder titles, but items within folders were not arranged further. All materials were rehoused in archival folders and boxes for long-term stability, but staples and other fasteners have not all been removed.

Additional Forms Available

All material donated in 1976 is available on legacy microfilm reels 2716-2725 at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan. Users should note that the current arrangement of the papers does not match the order of the material on microfilm due to re-processing and the microfilm is incomplete.

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

Stendahl Art Galleries records, 1907-1971. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

  • No downloads available