Archives of American Art Announces Major Gift of Records of Andrea Rosen Gallery

By the Archives
September 13, 2019
New York-based art dealer Andrea Rosen cultivated the early careers of many influential American artists

The Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution (the Archives), announced today that it has received a major gift of records from Andrea Rosen, the trailblazing art dealer whose eponymous gallery opened in 1990 in New York City. The 250 linear feet of records comprehensively document Rosen’s notable exhibitions, which began at the original gallery at 130 Prince Street in SoHo and, after 1997, the 525 West 24th Street space. Artist and exhibition files include photographs, correspondence, checklists, price lists, and press clippings. Photographs that Rosen herself took of installations, dinners, art fairs, and studio visits portray the gallery’s social and intimate moments and are a collection highlight. There are also complete business and financial records around the production of artworks.

The gallery’s inaugural show presented the work of Felix Gonzalez-Torres (American, b. Cuba, 1957-1996). His paper stack works, one of his minimal yet deeply poignant installations, established the gallery’s program as both visually experimental and socially aware. Rosen continues to work with the artist’s estate as its executor, co-representing him with David Zwirner Gallery, and as president of the Felix Gonzalez-Torres Foundation.

While perhaps best-known for her representation of Gonzalez-Torres, Rosen cultivated the early careers of many significant American and international artists including Rita Ackermann, John Currin, Sean Landers, Wolfgang Tillmans, Ryan Trecartin, and Andrea Zittel. The gallery’s concern with cutting-edge developments in painting, sculpture, and installation was often explored in group shows with ingenious themes, such as Are You Experienced? (1994), which presented art originating from fields as varied as fashion and biology, and Empirical Intuitive Absorption (2016) about the origins of creativity.

Archives of American Art Director Kate Haw said, “Andrea Rosen Gallery has been a vibrant and stalwart presence in New York’s art scene for 27 years. Andrea’s eye for young talent is legendary and her exhibitions were truly groundbreaking. With her very generous gift, we aim to preserve the gallery’s mission to be ‘conceptually rigorous, fully aware of the responsibility of putting one’s subjectivity in the public realm, and unafraid of actually being beautiful.’ We are very grateful to her and the gallery team.”

Andrea Rosen noted, “Creating definitive archives for the artists I have represented was always a critical component of the gallery’s focus. I am delighted and proud that these artist archives as well as the gallery’s archives will be held, cared for and accessible in the most important archive in America.”

The Rosen records will join those of Leo Castelli Gallery, Betty Parsons Gallery, André Emmerich Gallery, Tanager Gallery, Park Place, and numerous other historic galleries held by the Archives.

About the Archives of American Art
Founded in 1954, the Archives of American Art fosters advanced research through the accumulation and dissemination of primary sources, unequaled in historical depth and breadth, that document more than 200 years of the nation’s artists and art communities. The Archives provides access to these materials through its exhibitions and publications, including Archives of American Art Journal, the longest-running scholarly journal in the field of American art. An international leader in the digitizing of archival collections, the Archives also makes nearly 3 million images freely available online. The oral history collection includes more than 2,400 audio interviews, the largest accumulation of in-depth, first-person accounts of the American art world.