Painter Honoré Sharrer clearly had a thing for shifty-eyed dogs…remember this suspicious character?
Detail from Honoré Sharrer study for the painting Two dogs in a still life, not after 1997. Honoré Sharrer papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
This day in history, pop artist Andy Warhol was born in Pittsburgh, PA. Many of Warhol’s works of art focused upon celebrity culture, as well as branding & advertising; some of his most famous imagery displayed Marilyn Monroe and Campbell’s Tomato Soup cans. The artist attracted hoards of fans, including musicians and activists like John Lennon and Yoko Ono. Photo courtesy of archivesofamericanart
Yoko Ono, John Lennon and Andy Warhol, 1971 June 5 / David Bourdon, photographer. David Bourdon papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
In 1949, Andy Warhol was a young artist grateful to have his work accepted by Harper’s Magazine. He wrote to editor Russell Lynes noting that his “life couldn’t fill a penny postcard” and that he was “moving from one roach infested apartment to another.” You’ve come a long way, Andy baby! Happy birthday.
Andy Warhol letter to Russell Lynes, 1949. Harper’s Magazine records kept by managing editor Russell Lynes, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
We are some sad bears over here because the results are in, and our candidate for the ultimate Smithsonian item did not pass the first round of the Smithsonian Summer Showdown. Sorry, Picasso, that star-spangled banner is tough to beat!
However, the contest is far from over so we thought we’d throw our weight behind some of the contenders still in the ring.
To throw out some love to our fellow archivists, vote for the Smithsonian Institution Archives’ submission, James Smithson’s will (history bracket). Smithson, for whom the Smithsonian is named, was an Englishman who never visited the U.S. and yet nonetheless bequeathed his fortune to an “establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge” to be headquartered in Washington, D.C.
Or, if you follow us more for the Art than the Archives, vote for fellow tumblrites freersackler or hirshhorn (art bracket) - they both went three-dimensional with their entries, the Peacock Room and the Hirshhorn building. Vote now to be entered into the prize drawing for round 2, and the grand prize!
Sad bears from: Unidentified sender letter to Mimi Floch, circa 1910. Joseph Floch papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Industrial designer John Vassos and his wife, fashion writer Ruth Vassos got into the spirit of August as a pair of bathing beauties around 1940.
John and Ruth Vassos, circa 1940 / unidentified photographer. John Vassos papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Nobody, and we mean nobody, holds on to ephemera like Joseph Cornell did. We oughtta know, considering that we processed and digitized his papers (24.5 linear feet worth of boxes) which include such bits and bobs as leather postcards, hat pins, and 12 boxes of magazine and newspaper clippings and cutouts on subjects that interested him and inspired his assemblage art. Here you see some scraps of fabric that were safely kept with his correspondence, sent to him by one of his idols, the prima ballerina Tamara Toumanova.
Tamara Toumanova, Beverly Hills, Calif. letter to Joseph Cornell, Flushing, N.Y., 1942 May 16. Joseph Cornell papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Don’t forget to vote in the Smithsonian Summer Showdown everybody! We are in the “History” bracket, with Picasso’s list of Armory Show artists. Round 1 ends August 4th at midnight. Oh, and did we mention prizes? Yeah - everyone who votes in round 1 is entered into a drawing to win a 3d cast of a Smithsonian object made by the wizards at smithsonian3d.
A list written by Pablo Picasso of European artists to be included in the 1913 Armory Show, 1912. Walt Kuhn, Kuhn family papers, and Armory Show records, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
To wrap up the “Dog Days of Summer” week, we offer simply this: a basketful of puppies.
Have a great weekend!
DPLA loves puppies!
Puppies in a basket, 1948. Sumner, William Hoke. University of North Carolina at Charlotte via the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center.
We interrupt our regularly scheduled programming to bring you this basket of puppies from digitalpubliclibraryofamerica. SQUEEEEEEE!!!
John White Alexander, June, about 1911, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of William Alexander
The light in this painting is gorgeous. Curious about the man who created it? Read his life story and see his magnificent moustache in our finding aid to the John White Alexander papers.