Guide to the Irene Robinson Drawings

Finding aid created by Neeka Cannon and Russell Michalak
Ella Strong Denison Library
Libraries of The Claremont Colleges
Scripps College
1090 Columbia Avenue
Claremont, CA 91711
Phone: (909) 607-3941
Fax: (909) 607-1548
Email: denison@libraries.claremont.edu
URL: http://libraries.claremont.edu/denison/
© 2007
Claremont University Consortium. All rights reserved.

Guide to the Irene Robinson Drawings

Collection number: D1968.1

Ella Strong Denison Library

Libraries of The Claremont Colleges

Claremont, California
Processed by:
Elizabeth Gallager
Date Completed:
2007 Spring
Encoded by:
Kelley Wolfe Bachli
© 2004 Claremont University Consortium. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Irene Robinson drawings
Dates: 1931-1964
Collection number: D1968.1
Creator: Robinson, Irene B. (Irene Bowen), b. 1891
Collection Size: 4 oversize boxes and 3 oversize flat drawers
Repository: Claremont Colleges. Library. Ella Strong Denison Library.
Claremont, California 91711
Abstract: The Irene Robinson Collection of Artwork contains artwork relating to Irene Robinson's professional work. The collection contains illustrations from sixteen texts, all authored by W.W. Robinson. These texts, published largely between 1931 and 1966, include both children's picture books and perspectives on Southern California history. The collection also includes a number of sketches for potential new books and miscellaneous artwork by Irene Robinson. The collection contains charcoal, pastel, and pencil drawings, oil paintings, watercolors, and textual materials.
Physical location: Please consult repository.
Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

Access

Collection open for research.

Publication Rights

All requests for permission to publish must be submitted in writing to Denison Library.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Irene Robinson drawings. Ella Strong Denison Library, Libraries of The Claremont Colleges.

Acquisition Information

Gift of W.W. and Irene Robinson in 1968.

Processing Information

Processed by Elizabeth Gallagher, Scripps College, Spring 2007.

Biography / Administrative History

Irene Margaret Bowen Robinson (1891 - 1973) was born in Washington state, but she grew up in Indianapolis, Indiana, and Pasadena, California. In 1915, she attended Drury College in Springfield, Missouri, and later studied at the University of Chicago, the Broadmoor Art Academy with John Carlson in Colorado Springs, and in Los Angeles at the Chouinard and Otis Art Institutes. In the early 1920s, she taught art in Los Angeles and then married W. W. (William Wilcox) Robinson, a businessman and writer.
Irene Robinson and her husband Will began to publish collaboratively in approximately 1931. Under the authorship of Will, with Irene as illustrator, their published works include more than fifteen illustrated works for children and adults. Will was an avid collector of Southern California ephemera and knowledge, and published books on the subject include The Story of Pershing Square, The Malibu, and The Island of Santa Catalina. The couple also published many children's books, including some of the first children's books on the subject of prehistoric animals (Ancient Animals and The Beasts of the Tar Pits).
Irene and Will Robinson were in their late 70s when they began to search for a home for their collaborative work. At the suggestion of Lawrence Clark Powell, the majority of Irene's artwork (valued at approximately $5000 in 1968 by Glen Dawson) found its home at Denison Library, Scripps College, in 1968.
Irene died in January 1973, less than a year after her husband.

Scope and Content of Collection

The Irene Robinson Collection of Artwork contains artwork relating to Irene Robinson's professional work. The collection contains illustrations from sixteen texts, all authored by W.W. Robinson. These texts, published largely between 1931 and 1966, include both children's picture books and perspectives on Southern California history. The collection also includes a number of sketches for potential new books and miscellaneous artwork by Irene Robinson. The collection contains charcoal, pastel, and pencil drawings, oil paintings, watercolors, and textual materials.

Arrangement

The collection is organized into 16 series:

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Children's literature -- Illustrations
Illustration of books -- 20th century
Picture books for children


Container List

 

At the Seashore

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from both published editions of At the Seashore (1942, MacMillan; 1964, Ward Ritchie), a story for children of a day at the beach and the sea life encountered there. It also contains one or two tentative illustrations that were not published. The illustrations are primarily charcoal and pastel drawings.
Box  Box 1 , Folder  1

3 illustrations from "At the Seashore": Seagulls; Sandpipers; Frontispiece 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 1 , Folder  2

3 illustrations from "At the Seashore": Tidepool; Driftwood Trio; Dog and Hermit Crabs 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 1 , Folder  3

3 illustrations from "At the Seashore": Sea Lion; Pelicans; Speedboat 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 1 , Folder  4

3 illustrations from "At the Seashore": Big Sealion; Picnic; Sailboats 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 1 , Folder  5

3 illustrations from "At the Seashore": Girl/baby sealion; Children in Waves; Campfire 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 1 , Folder  6

2 illustrations from "At the Seashore": Closing page sunset; Turtle (possible illustrations) 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 11 , Folder  1

Illustration from "At the Seashore": Seagulls 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 11 , Folder  2

3 illustrations from "At the Seashore": Seahorses; Shells and feathers; Firewood 1942, 1964

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
 

On the Farm

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from On the Farm, a children’s book recounting the story of animal life on the farm. In addition to the book illustrations, it contains multiple copies of a study of plough horse, completed in different mediums. These illustrations are primarily charcoal and pastel drawings, with one oil painting.
Box  Box 1 , Folder  7

5 illustrations from "On the Farm": Small chickens; Sow and piglets; Cow and calf; Sow and 2 piglets; Plough horses 1939

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 11 , Folder  3

3 illustrations from "On the Farm": Title page; Hens and chicks; 2 cows 1939

Physical Description: Charcoal, pencils, and pastels on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 11 , Folder  4

3 illustrations from "On the Farm": Sheep; Horse and foal (2 versions) 1939

Physical Description: Charcoal, pencils, and pastels on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 11 , Folder  5

3 illustrations from "On the Farm": Barn and cows; Kittens; Horses and plough 1939

Physical Description: Charcoal, pencils, and pastels on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 11 , Folder  6

3 illustrations from "On the Farm": Horses and plough study; Pigs; Horses and plough large version 1939

Physical Description: Charcoal, pastels, and oil paint on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 11 , Folder  7

2 illustrations from "On the Farm": Small sketches 1939

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
 

Lions

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains both illustrations and textual material from Lions, a chronicle for children of lions’ place in human culture. Artwork is primarily charcoal drawings.
Box  Box 1 , Folder  8

3 illustrations from "Lions": The king of beasts; Of the god in the sky; Hyenas 1936

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 1 , Folder  9

Text of "Lions" 1936

Physical Description: Printed material
Box  Case 5, Drawer 12 , Folder  1

2 illustrations from "Lions": Cover layout; Ancient arena 1936

Physical Description: Ink and charcoal on paper
 

The Book of Bible Animals

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from both editions of the children’s book The Book of Bible Animals, including frontispiece material. Artwork is primarily charcoal drawings.
Box  Box 1 , Folder  10

3 illustrations from "The Book of Bible Animals": Frontispiece/cover; Doves; Noah's Ark 1938, 1966

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 1 , Folder  11

2 illustrations from "The Book of Bible Animals": Donkey; Angel/donkey 1938, 1966

Physical Description: Pencil and charcoal on paper
 

At the Zoo

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations and textual material from At the Zoo, the story of children’s visit to the zoo. It includes final illustrations and sketches as well as the complete text. Illustrations include both pastel and charcoal drawings.
Box  Box 2 , Folder  1

3 illustrations from "At the Zoo": Bear family (title page); Monkey; Gorilla 1940

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  2

3 illustrations from "At the Zoo": Children on steps; Bear family asleep; Birds 1940

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  3

3 illustrations from "At the Zoo": Swan; Camel; Deer/elk 1940

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  4

3 illustrations from "At the Zoo": Ostrich; Kangaroos; Cheetahs 1940

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  5

2 illustrations from "At the Zoo": Polar Bears; Swimming bear. Text for "At the Zoo." Sketches for "At the Zoo." 1940

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper; printed material
Box  Case 5, Drawer 12 , Folder  2

3 illustrations from"At the Zoo": Cover layout; Girl and boy; Penguin pool 1940

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 12 , Folder  3

3 illustrations from "At the Zoo": Polar bears; Elephants; Cover sketch 1940

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper; Pastels on tissue paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 12 , Folder  4

3 illustrations from "At the Zoo": Elephant rides (2 copies); Lion 1940

Physical Description: Pastels on paper
 

Beasts of the Tar Pits

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from and printed material related to both editions of Beasts of the Tar Pits, a children’s book on the animals found around the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles. Textual material includes both complete proofs and advertisements. Illustrations include ink and charcoal drawings.
Box  Box 2 , Folder  6

"Beasts of the Tar Pits": Proof (art and text), Proof (text), Flyer/order form, Possible illustration 1932, 1949

Physical Description: Printed material, ink and charcoal on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  7

3 illustrations from "Beasts of the Tar Pits": Frontispiece; Teratornis skull; Imperial mammoth bone 1932, 1949

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  8

3 illustrations from "Beasts of the Tar Pits": Dire wolf skull; Prehistoric camel skull; Short-faced bear skull 1932, 1949

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  9

3 illustrations from "Beasts of the Tar Pits": Giant ground sloth skull; Bison skull; Lion skull 1932, 1949

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
 

Animals in the Sun

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from Animals in the Sun, a children’s book on animals of desert and southern environments. Illustrations include charcoal and pastel drawings.
Box  Box 2 , Folder  10

3 illustrations from "Animals in the Sun": Snakes; Gila monster; Horned lizards 1934

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  11

3 illustrations from "Animals in the Sun": Alligator snapping turtle; Turtles; Galapagos penguins and giant tortoises 1934

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  12

Unused sketches from "Animals in the Sun": Horned lizards; Iguanas 1934

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 12 , Folder  5

"Animals in the Sun" cover layout 1934

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
 

Ancient Animals of America

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from both editions of Ancient Animals of America, one of the first children’s books on prehistoric animals. It includes illustrations of dinosaurs, thunder beasts, giant sloths, and skeletons. All illustrations are charcoal drawings.
Box  Box 2 , Folder  13

3 illustrations from "Ancient Animals": Small dinosaur; Archeopterix; Glyptodont 1934, 1962

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  14

3 illustrations from "Ancient Animals": Mammoth; Footprint; Fossil 1934, 1962

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 2 , Folder  15

3 illustrations from "Ancient Animals": Skeleton; Skeleton; Thunder beast 1934, 1962

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 12 , Folder  6

3 illustrations from "Ancient Animals of America": Titanotheres; Sloth; Endpaper 1934, 1962

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 12 , Folder  7

Endpiece, "Ancient Animals of America" (skeletons) 1934, 1962

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
 

The Story of Pershing Square

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains small illustrations from The Story of Pershing Square, a historical recount of the growth of this Los Angeles landmark. Illustrations are ink or ink and watercolor.
Box  Box 3 , Folder  1

3 illustrations from "The Story of Pershing Square": Title page (2); Title page layout 1931

Physical Description: Ink and watercolor on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  2

3 illustrations from "The Story of Pershing Square": "Part of Plan de Ciudad"; Woman; Remi Nadeau's home 1931

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  3

3 illustrations from "The Story of Pershing Square": Taft house; Walking couple; Carriage 1931

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  4

3 illustrations from "The Story of Pershing Sqaure": Hazard's Pavilion; Car; Buildings/benches 1931

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  5

3 illustrations from "The Story of Pershing Square": Woman w/ parasol; Carriage; Woman 1931

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  6

1 illustration from "The Story of Pershing Sqaure": People on benches. 4 illustrations from "Pershing Square" ideas: Feet w/ pigeons; Horse and buggy (2); Bicyclist 1931

Physical Description: Ink and watercolor on paper
 

The Island of Santa Catalina

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from The Island of Santa Catalina, a historical look at both human and natural life on the island. It includes a map of the island as well as drawings of porpoises and other wildlife. Illustrations include ink and watercolor drawings.
Box  Box 3 , Folder  7

3 illustrations from "The Island of Santa Catalina": Cover (Bay); Porpoises; Sea elephant 1941

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  8

3 illustrations from "The Island of Santa Catalina": Bald eagle; Broadbill swordfish; Wild goat 1941

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  9

3 illustrations from "The Island of Santa Catalina": Pelican; Marine garden; Wild boar 1941

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 13 , Folder  7

Miscellaneous illustrations, including Map of Santa Catalina from "The Island of Santa Catalina" 1941

Physical Description: Ink, watercolor on paper; Woodcut
 

The Book of Elephants

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations and cover proofs/layouts for both editions of The Book of Elephants, a children’s book. It also includes three copies of the dust jacket for the book. All illustrations are charcoal drawings.
Box  Box 3 , Folder  10

3 covers from "The Book of Elephants" 1935, 1962

Physical Description: Printed material
Box  Box 3 , Folder  11

3 illustrations from "The Book of Elephants": Circus elephants; Baby elephant bath; Elephant in crate 1935, 1962

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 13 , Folder  3

3 illustrations from "The Book of Elephants": Title layout; Royal elephants (2 copies) 1935, 1962

Physical Description: Printed material; Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 13 , Folder  4

Illustrations from "The Book of Elephants": Circus elephants (2 copies) 1935, 1962

Physical Description: Printed material; Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 13 , Folder  5

"The Book of Elephants": Ward Ritchie edition layout/proofs 1962

Physical Description: Printed material
 

Big Boy

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from Big Boy, a children’s book telling the story of a dog employed in the armed forces. All illustrations are charcoal drawings.
Box  Box 3 , Folder  12

3 illustrations from "Big Boy": Big Boy in truck; Big Boy on wall; Big boy with POW 1944

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  13

2 illustrations from "Big Boy": Big Boy in battle; Big Boy in jungle 1944

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 13 , Folder  2

Illustration from "Big Boy": Big Boy on the beach 1944

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
 

Animal Babies

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains illustrations from Animal Babies, a children’s book on animal babies ranging from kittens to donkey foals. Illustrations are charcoal and pastel drawings.
Box  Box 3 , Folder  14

3 illustrations from "Animal Babies": Baby donkey; Baby birds; Baby donkey (matted) 1947

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on paper
Box  Box 3 , Folder  15

Illustration from "Animal Babies": Chicks 1947

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Case 5, Drawer 13 , Folder  1

"Animal Babies" illustrations: Basket of kittens 1947

Physical Description: Pastels on paper
 

The Forest and the People

Series Scope and Content Summary

This folder contains, among other drawings, the design for the title piece of The Forest and the People, a historical recount of the Angeles Forest and the people involved with it. The illustration is ink and paint on paper.
Box  Box 4 , Folder  1

Title page from "The Forest and the People: The Story of the Angeles National Forest"; Taj Mahal photograph; Monterey reproduction 1946

Physical Description: Ink and paint on paper, photo
 

Ranchoes become Cities

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series includes various illustrations from Ranchos Become Cities, an account of the transformation of large working ranches in the Los Angeles area into the cities that exist now. Sketches and illustrations are ink on paper and tissue paper.
Box  Case 5, Drawer 13 , Folder  6

2 illustrations from "Ranchos Become Cities": Cover page layout; 4 small prints 1939

Physical Description: Ink on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  2

Sketches: "Ranchos Become Cities" and Miscellanenous 1939

Physical Description: Ink and pencil on tissue paper
 

Miscellaneous Artwork

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains all remaining Robinson artwork. Included in the series are notebooks with illustrations and ideas for new published works (The Youngest Swan, Animal Oddities). The series also contains original artwork, including woodcuts of California locations, and price logs and exhibit information. Mediums range from woodcuts to ink, charcoal, and pastels.
Box  Box 3 , Folder  16

"The Youngest Swan" Notebook undated

Physical Description: Pencil on paper, printed material
Box  Box 3 , Folder  17

"Animal Oddities" Notebook undated

Physical Description: Ink on paper, printed material
Box  Box 3 , Folder  18

"Picture Book of Birds and Beasts" Notebook undated

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper, printed material
Box  Box 3 , Folder  19

Silverlake (3 copies) undated

Physical Description: Woodcut
Box  Box 3 , Folder  20

Baldwin Hills (multiple copies) undated

Physical Description: Woodcut
Box  Box 3 , Folder  21

Exhibit Info; Price Log undated

Physical Description: Printed material
Box  Box 4 , Folder 

Notebook: Original Drawings undated

Physical Description: Charcoal, pastels, oil paints on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  3

3 drawings: Baby sketch (2); Rain dance costumes undated

Physical Description: Pencil on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  4

3 drawings: Pueblo; Tewd rain priest; Geometric design undated

Physical Description: Pencil on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  5

Miscellaneous drawings undated

Physical Description: Pencil on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  7

Miscellaneous drawings: Nude among plants undated

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  8

Miscellaneous drawings: Nudes undated

Physical Description: Charcoal on tissue paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  9

Miscellaneous drawings: Model sketches undated

Physical Description: Pencil on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  10

Miscellaneous drawings: sketches undated

Physical Description: Charcoal and pastels on tissue paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  11

Miscellaneous drawings undated

Physical Description: Charcoal, pencil, and watercolor on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  12

Miscellaneous drawings (Laguna Coast) undated

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  13

Miscellaneous drawings (Animal Book?): Roadrunner; Camel; Giant shark undated

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  14

Miscellaneous drawings/transparencies undated

Physical Description: Ink on paper; ink on transparency
Box  Box 4 , Folder  15

Miscellaneous drawings (Laguna) undated

Physical Description: Charcoal and ink on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  16

Miscellaneous drawings (Jebediah Smith) undated

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  17

Miscellaneous drawings (Jebediah Smith and landscapes) undated

Physical Description: Charcoal and watercolor on paper
Box  Box 4 , Folder  18

Malibu drawing (multiple reproductions) undated

Physical Description: Charcoal on paper
Box  Bxo 4 , Folder  6

Miscellaneous drawings undated

Physical Description: Watercolor, ink, and pencil on paper