A Finding Aid to the Sheldon Ross Gallery Records, 1970-2007, bulk 1976-1995, in the Archives of American Art
AAA.shelrosg

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.shelrosg
Creators:
Sheldon Ross
Dates:
circa 1970-2007
bulk 1976-1995
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
1.8 linear feet
Repository:
Archives of American Art
The records of the Sheldon Ross Gallery, Birmingham, Michigan, measure 1.8 linear feet and are dated 1970-2007, with the bulk of materials dating from 1976-1995. The majority of the collection consists of artists' files. About half of the materials relate to Romare Bearden's work and his relationship with Sheldon Ross, the gallery owner. Also included are artists' files regarding George Grosz and Michigan artists. The contents of artists' files vary but generally include biographical information, printed materials and photographic images. The collection also contains correspondence, exhibition files, and photographs documenting the gallery's activities.

Scope and Contents note
Scope and Contents note
The records of the Sheldon Ross Gallery, Birmingham, Michigan, measure 1.8 linear feet and are dated 1970-2007, with the bulk of materials dating from 1976-1995. The majority of the collection consists of artists' files. About half of the materials relate to Romare Bearden's work and his relationship with Sheldon Ross, the gallery owner. Also included are artists' files regarding George Grosz and Michigan artists. The contents of artists' files vary but generally include biographical information, printed materials and photographic images. The collection also contains correspondence, exhibition files, and photographs documenting the gallery's activities.
The gallery records document its exhibition history, exhibition reviews, sales of artwork, and Ross' significant projects. Also included are photographs and slides documenting much of the artwork exhibited. Materials relating to Romare Bearden include writings by and about Bearden and his artwork and correspondence between Bearden and Ross during the years 1976-1989. There are many catalogs of Bearden's solo exhibitions at galleries, museums, and institutions, as well as exhibition reviews from newspapers and magazines, and images of Bearden's works.
The gallery exhibited other well-known artists including 20th century American artists and German Expressionists, notably George Grosz, who instructed Bearden at the Art Students League in New York. Found in the records are exhibition catalogues, price lists, inventory cards and artists' background materials. Also found is correspondence with museums, artists and clients, and slides and other photographic material of artwork offered by the gallery. Of note is correspondence between Sheldon Ross and the FBI concerning Ross' participation as an expert witness in a prosecution of individuals who were involved in Romare Bearden forgeries.
There are drawings of Sheldon Ross and The Sheldon Ross Galley by his son, Robert Ross. Photographs are of Sheldon Ross and Romare Bearden, Sheldon Ross with family and friends, and the predecessor gallery, Middle Earth Gallery.

Arrangement note
Arrangement note
The collection is arranged in 7 Series. Materials are generally arranged by record type and chronologically thereafter.
Series 1: Gallery History, 1976-2000 (Box 1, OV 4; 0.2 linear feet)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1982-1999 (Box 1; 0.1 linear feet)
Series 3: Exhibition Files, 1976-1988 (Box 1; 0.1 linear feet)
Series 4: Artists' Files, 1968-2007 (Boxes 1-2; 0.9 linear feet)
Series 5: Printed Material, 1976-2000 (Box 2; 2 folders; OV 4; 0.2 linear feet)
Series 6: Drawings by Robert Ross, after 1975, (OV 5; 0.1 linear feet)
Series 7: Photographic Materials, circa 1970-2000 (Boxes 2-3, OV 5; 0.2 linear feet)

Biographical/Historical note
Biographical/Historical note
The Sheldon Ross Gallery (1975-1993), Birmingham, Michigan, and later Sheldon Ross Fine Arts and Sheldon Ross Fine Arts LLC (1993-2000) were operated by Sheldon Ross until his death in 2000. The Sheldon Ross Gallery was the only gallery in the Detroit area to consistently show German Expressionist art, emphasizing graphics. However, the gallery and Ross are best known for their early and continued support of Romare Bearden's work. The exhibition history shows a balance between an interest in local artists and an effort to offer diverse artwork from broad based sources.

Administration
Processing Information note
The collection was processed by Harriet E. Shapiro in 2011.
Author
Finding aid prepared by Harriet E. Shapiro
Sponsor
Support provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.
Immediate Source of Acquisition note
The records were donated to the Archives of American Art in 2010 by Phyllis Ross, widow of Sheldon Ross.

Using the Collection
Preferred Citation note
Sheldon Ross Gallery records, circa 1970-2007, bulk 1976-1995. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Conditions Governing Access note
Use of original materials requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access requires advance notice.
Conditions Governing Use note
The Sheldon Ross Gallery records are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Art Students League (New York, N.Y.). -- Faculty Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Bearden, Romare, 1911-1988 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Grosz, George, 1893-1959 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Middle Earth Gallery Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ross, Sheldon, 1925-2000 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation. Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art galleries, Commercial--Michigan Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Arts--Forgeries Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Expressionism (Art)--Germany Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographs Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sketches Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Writings Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives of American Art
750 9th Street, NW
Victor Building, Suite 2200
Washington, D.C., 20001
Phone: 202-633-7950
http://www.aaa.si.edu/askus