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PRELIMINARY INVENTORY OF THE KIRK VARNEDOE PAPERS, 1890-2006 (bulk 1970-2003)
2008.M.60  
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Table of contents What's This?

Container List

 

Series I. Professional correspondence, 1969-2003

Physical Description: 1.25 linear feet (3 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Letters regarding the authentication of Rodin drawings, exhibition planning, and book publication.

Arrangement note

Arranged in chronological order by year.
Box 1

1969-1972

Scope and Content Note

Including letters from the National Gallery regarding Varnedoe's Rodin exhibition, from Praeger, Inc. regarding the Rodin book, and various letters regarding authentication of Rodin works.
Box 2

1973-2003

Scope and Content Note

Including letters from artists Duane Hansen and Cy Twombly, and regarding the exhibition Primitivism and Modern Art, and regarding various speaking engagements.
Box 119

Restricted, 1974-1996

 

Series II. Personal items, 1967-2003, undated

Physical Description: 1.04 linear feet (3 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Letters from friends and colleagues, memorabilia, and photographs, mainly of travels.

Arrangement note

Arranged in rough chronological order within the two media categories of correspondence and photography.
Box 3

Correspondence, 1970-2003, undated

Scope and Content Note

Including letters from friends and colleagues congratulating Varnedoe on appointments, expressing gratitude for his support, and offering sympathy for his final struggle with illness.
Box 4, 120

Photographs, slides, and miscellaneous, 1967-2001, and undated

Scope and Content Note

Including primarily photographs of travels in Europe, with some related memorabilia.
 

Series III. Education, 1964-1972, undated

Physical Description: 3.75 linear feet (9 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

A comprehensive record of Varnadoe's undergraduate and graduate studies, with term papers, lecture notes, transcripts, and assorted materials.

Arrangement note

Materials from Williams College and Stanford University are grouped separately and arranged in rough chronological order by year.
Box 5-7

Williams College, 1964-1968

Scope and Content Note

Including term papers, lecture notes, address books, an art review from student newspaper, and transcripts. Also present are Varnadoe's curricula for a semester of post-graduate teaching at Williams (1968) and a narrative resume describing his choices and decisions during this stage of his life.
Box 7-13

Stanford University, 1968-1972

Scope and Content Note

Including Varnedoe's notes from his classes with Dr. Albert Elsen and others, photocopied pages from art historical textbooks, a heavily annotated copy of an issue of Stanford Today about Van Gogh, and a complete set of term papers from his graduate career. Also present are documents about Varnedoe's involvement in campus anti-war protests and art-related activism.
 

Series IV. Teaching, 1972-1985, undated

Physical Description: 2.92 linear feet (7 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Lecture notes, syllabi, bibliographies, slides, and photocopied related readings.

Arrangement note

Materials are grouped by institution in the sequence in which Varnadoe taught in them.
Box 14, 133

Stanford University, 1972-1974

Box 15-16

Columbia University, 1974-1979

Box 17

New York University, 1980-1985

Box 18

Las Meninas symposium, New York University, 1984

Box 19

Assorted, undated

Box 20-34, 138

Series V. Lectures, 1972-2005

Physical Description: 7.7 linear feet (16 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Research notes, drafts, study photographs, and in some cases, audio recordings and floppy disc records of the lectures.

Arrangement note

Arranged in chronological order by year.
Box 20

1972-1989

Scope and Content Note

On topics such as Caillebotte, Rodin, photography, and primitivism in Modern Art.
Box 21

1990-1992

Scope and Content Note

On such topics as Pollock, Munch, collecting, and including the commencement address Varnedoe gave at Stanford.
 

Slade lectures: the Poverty of Postmodernism, 1992-1993

Box 22-24

Drafts of lecture texts

Box 137, Folder C24-C31

Audiotapes of lectures

Box 25

1993-1994

Scope and Content Note

On topics such as Pollock and Twombly, and including Varnedoe's commencement speech at Williams College.
Box 26, 120

1994-1997

Scope and Content Note

On such topics as Twombly and Jasper Johns, and including Varnedoe's eulogy for Leo Castelli. Including views of Varnedoe in the act of lecturing.
Box 27

1998-2000

Scope and Content Note

On such topics as Lichtenstein, Pollock, David Smith, and Marcia Tucker
Box 28

2001

Scope and Content Note

On topics such as Roulin and Van Gogh, and for George Segal's memorial.
Box 29

2002

Scope and Content Note

On topics such as Matisse/Picasso, Van Gogh/Gauguin, and Rembrandt.
 

Mellon lectures: Pictures of Nothing: Abstract Art Since Pollock, 2003-2005

Box 30-34

Drafts of lectures

Box 136, Folder C12-C23

Audio tapes of lectures

 

Series VI. Research and Writings, 1890-2006, undated

Physical Description: 34.59 linear feet (86 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Files on the artists or topics Varnadoe wrote on or curated exhibitions about, with ample visual material, historical scholarship in the form of photocopied articles and books, and often including correspondence with artists or the sponsoring institutions, and occasionally also exhibition installation photographs and checklists.

Arrangement note

Arranged in three subseries.
 

Series VI.A. Artists, 1890-2006, undated

Physical Description: 28.0 linear feet (67 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Files contain notes, readings, drafts of essays, study photographs and slides, with occasional audiotaped interviews of living artists.

Arrangement note

Arranged in alphabetical order by the last name of the artist.
Box 34-42, 121

Gustave Caillebotte, 1972-2001

Box 43

Edgar Degas, 1899-1998

Box 43, 137

Duane Hanson, 1974-1985

Box 43-49

Jasper Johns, circa 1960-1996

Box 50-51

Matisse/Picasso, 1959-2003

Box 52-58

Jackson Pollock, 1926-2006

Box 59-82, 122-125, 133

Auguste Rodin, 1892-2003

Scope and Content Note

Including numerous authentication files, and research dating from Varnedoe's Stanford years through the 1990s when he wrote A Fine Regard.
Box 83-86, 133

Scandinavian artists, circa 1950- circa 1988

Scope and Content Note

Research on various artists for Varnedoe's Northern Lights exhibition in 1982, and book published in 1988.
Box 87

Richard Serra, 1987-2002

Box 87

James Turrell, 1967-2004

 

Cy Twombly, 1920-2000, undated

Box 88-90, 121, 133

Drafts, readings, photographs

Box 135, Folder C1-C11

Audio tapes

Box 91-93

Vincent Van Gogh, circa 1890-2003

Box 94-95

Andy Warhol, 1987-1999

 

Series VI.B. Topics, 1911-2002, undated

Physical Description: 2.5 linear feet (7 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

A selection of topics Varnadoe pursued during his lifetime.

Arrangement note

Arranged in alphabetical order by topic.
Box 96

Abstraction, 1963-2002

Box 96

Aviation, 1911-1970

Box 97

High and Low, 1962-1992

Scope and Content Note

Including reviews of the landmark show and numerous installation shots.
Box 98-99, 126-127

Ruins, 1968-2001

Scope and Content Note

Box 99 contains eleven notebooks with Varnedoe's reflections on ruins and other themes, mainly from his 1977 research trip.
Box 100

Primitivism. 1984

Box 100

Propellers, 1944-1992

Box 100

Vienna, 1985-1986

 

Series VI.C. Assorted, 1944-2003, undated

Physical Description: 4.09 linear feet (12 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Including articles about critical theory, clippings of general interest, and research possibly related to other curatorial and writing interests. Includes card catalog of Varnedoe's upstate New York library and audio visual material relating to topics other than the artists listed in subseries VI.A.

Arrangement note

Arranged in chronological order by year.
Box 101-106

Articles by others, 1944-2003

Box 128-133

Slides, undated

Scope and Content Note

Including views of monuments in Europe and commercially available slides of the work of various artists.
Box 134, Folder F1-F4

Films, undated

Scope and Content Note

Including four reels, 3 unidentified, 1 about the artist Krogh.
Box 137, Folder C32-C33

Audiotapes, circa 1995

Scope and Content Note

Including a Varnedoe interview with Jeff Koons.
Box 138, Folder D1-D15

Compact digital media, circa 1980 - circa 2003

Scope and Content Note

There are 15 discs, including one recording the card catalog of Varnadoe's library. The floppy discs generally pertain to lectures.
 

Series VII. Museum of Modern Art files, 1948-2004, undated

Physical Description: 1.25 linear feet (3 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Including minutes of meetings, reports about art institutions other than MOMA, memoranda, and assorted correspondence.

Arrangement note

Arranged in rough chronological order by year.
Box 107

Papers by museum world colleagues and Varnedoe about Museum collecting and management, 1948-2004

Scope and Content Note

Including interview with Adam Gopnik, and plans for museum expansion.
Box 108

MOMA catalogs and calendars, memos, minutes of meetings regarding MOMA expansion and the Painting and Sculpture committee

Box 109

MOMA Cycle III meeting notes

 

Series VIII. Printed matter, 1971-2006, undated

Physical Description: 8.58 linear feet (9 boxes)

Scope and Content Note

Including a fairly complete clipping file and mainstream serial collection on Varnedoe, documenting his career, with seemingly random selections of art ephemera.

Arrangement note

Materials are grouped by type.
Box 110

Articles about Varnadoe, 1976-2001

Box 111-114

Proofs of Pictures of Nothing, 2006

Scope and Content Note

Including correspondence with Varnedoe's widow.
Box 115

Postcards of art, undated

Box 116

Announcements and brochures, 1972-1999, undated

Box 117

Periodicals, 1971-2002

Box 118

Miscellaneous, 1977-1991, undated