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HC 6

Harvard Art Museums. Exhibition Records, 1905-2008: A Guide

Harvard Art Museum Archives, Harvard Art Museums, Harvard University
The President and Fellows of Harvard College

© President and Fellows of Harvard College


These records were processed with the generous support of the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Getty Foundation

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: HC 6
Repository: Harvard Art Museum Archives, Harvard Art Museums, Harvard University
Title: Harvard Art Museums. Exhibition Records, 1905-2008: A Guide
Date(s): 1905-2008
Quantity: 73 linear feet (172 file boxes, oversize materials)
Abstract: These records were created by museum staff in the course of planning and installing exhibitions. They pertain primarily to exhibitions held in the Fogg Museum, the Busch-Reisinger Museum, and the Arthur M. Sackler Museum, but they also include materials related to traveling or off-site exhibitions. The records date from 1905-2008 and include correspondence on a wide range of topics, exhibition proposals, photographic prints and negatives, object lists, loan forms, press releases, clippings, invitations, posters, printed labels and wall text, memoranda, exhibition catalogues, and drafts of catalogue essays.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

These records were created by museum staff in various departments and capacities as they planned and installed exhibitions. They were subsequently collected in the Archives.

Processing Information:

The collection was processed from May to October 2009 by Laura Morris.

Conditions on Access:

Access to most of the records is unrestricted. Access to files containing materials deemed confidential, including recent institutional correspondence, is restricted.
Copyright: The President and Fellows of Harvard College hold any copyright in the Archives' Exhibition Records. Copyright in some papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns. Researchers must obtain the written permission of the holder(s) of copyright and the Harvard Art Museums Archives before publishing any material in the collection.

Conditions on Use:

Copying: Papers may be copied in accordance with the Harvard Art Museums Archives' usual procedures.

Related Material:

There are additional exhibition records at the Harvard Art Museums, maintained by individual curatorial and administrative departments. There are also photographs of many of the exhibition installations in the Harvard Art Museums Archives' photograph collections.

Arrangement

The records are arranged alphabetically by keyword (not always the first word in the folder title), in one series.

Scope and Content

These records were created by museum staff in the course of planning and installing exhibitions and subsequently collected by the Archives. They pertain primarily to exhibitions held in the Fogg Museum, the Busch-Reisinger Museum, and the Arthur M. Sackler Museum, but they also include materials related to traveling or off-site exhibitions. The records range in date from 1905 to 2008 and include correspondence on a wide range of topics, exhibition proposals, photographic prints and negatives, object lists, loan forms, press releases, clippings, invitations, posters, labels and wall text, memoranda, exhibition catalogues and drafts of catalogue essays. The records include materials created by students enrolled in the course "Museum Work and Museum Problems,"who organized exhibitions as part of their studies. Some correspondence with artists, related to their works on exhibition, is included.
The folders have been re-housed into archival folders and boxes. Folders and their contents have been kept in their original order, and overstuffed folders have been divided among several folders for the sake of preservation and numbered to indicate that they represent a part of a larger whole (for example: "folder 1 of 2"). The original folder titles have been retained; any added information has been enclosed in square brackets by the processing archivist. The folders are filed alphabetically by title and in most instances the papers within each folder are filed in either chronological or reverse chronological order.
Acidic documents have been isolated with archival paper and in some cases enclosed in mylar. Fragile materials have been enclosed in mylar. Oversize materials have been filed in oversize storage; separation sheets indicate their removal. These oversize materials may be consulted upon request, and their location is indicated in the detailed container list that follows. Some of the collection suffered water damage in a flood of the archives in 1998; as a result, many of the papers are wrinkled, some ink has run, and some are stuck together and in need of treatment by conservators.
It should be noted that the titles and dates of exhibitions, as provided in folder names, are not always complete or accurate. In many instances exhibitions were known by several different titles and there are discrepancies among various sources (correspondence, posters, catalogues and invitations) as to the correct title. The opening and closing dates of many exhibitions also differ from what is indicated by the folder titles. Often exhibitions were extended and lasted longer than originally planned. In some instances exhibitions occurred in several stages, with some or all of the objects on view being exchanged for other objects in the course of the exhibition.

Box and Folder Locations

Container List

Additional Index Terms

Art--Criticism and Interpretation
Art--Exhibition Techniques--History--20th Century
Art--Exhibitions
Art--Exhibitions--Catalogs
Art--Exhibitions--history
Art--History
Art--Collectors and collecting
Art--Study and teaching--Massachusetts
Art in universities and colleges
Art, American--Exhibitions
Art Museums--Massachusetts
Art museums--Educational aspects
Art objects--Conservation and Restoration--Exhibitions
Art objects--United States--Exhibitions
Art objects, African--Exhibitions
Art objects, Ancient--Exhibitions
Art objects, Asian--Exhibitions
Art objects, Byzantine--Exhibitions
Art objects, European--Exhibitions
Art objects, German--Exhibitions
Art objects, Indian--Exhibitions
Art objects, Islamic--Exhibitions
Art objects, Medieval--Exhibitions
Art, Modern--20th Century--Exhibitions
Art, Modern--21st Century--Exhibitions
Art Patronage--Massachusetts
College art museums--Massachusetts--Cambridge
Drawing--Exhibitions
Exhibitions--Massachusetts--Cambridge
Exhibitions
Harvard University--Museums
Museum exhibits--Planning
Museum exhibits--United States--History
Museum loans
Museums--Massachusetts
Photography--Exhibitions
Prints--Exhibitions
Sculpture--Exhibitions
Arthur M. Sackler Museum
Busch-Reisinger Museum
Coolidge, John, 1913-1995
Fogg Art Museum
Forbes, Edward Waldo, 1873-1969
Harvard Art Museum
Mongan, Agnes
Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965

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