Archives of American Art

A Finding Aid to the Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne Papers, 1910s-1980, in the Archives of American Art

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.bengrosa
Creators:
Bengelsdorf, Rosalind, 1916-1979
Dates:
1910s-1980
Languages:
English
.
Physical Description:
3.2 Linear feet
Repository:
The papers of painter and critic Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne measure 3.2 linear feet and date from the 1910s to 1980. The papers document Browne's career through biographical materials including sketches and photographs, correspondence with friends, artists, and institutions, writings, professional files, and printed material.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The papers of painter and critic Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne measure 3.2 linear feet and date from the 1910s to 1980. The papers document Browne's career through biographical materials including sketches and photographs, correspondence with friends, artists, and institutions, writings, professional files, and printed material.
Biographical material includes a transcript of an interview with Susan C. Larsen. Correspondence includes letters from Ethel Baziotes, Romare Bearden, Sid Gotcliffe, and Philip Evergood. Writings include sound recordings of a monologue by Browne concerning her husband Byron Browne and Sam Kootz. Professional files may include correspondence, printed material, writings, and agreements relating to Browne's various roles as a critic, an artist, and an educator. Of note are files on the American Abstract Artists organization and the WPA Federal Art Project.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged as 5 series.
  • Series 1: Biographical Material, 1910s-1980 (Box 1; 0.4 linear feet)
  • Series 2: Correspondence, 1929-1979 (Box 1, 0.6 linear feet)
  • Series 3: Writings and Notes, 1934-1978 (Box 2; 0.3 linear feet)
  • Series 4: Professional Files, 1930-1978 (Boxes 2-3; 1.7 linear feet)
  • Series 5: Printed Material, 1930-1979 (Box 4; 0.2 linear feet)

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne (1916-1979) was an abstract painter, critic, educator, and writer active in New York City, New York.
Born in New York City in 1916, Rosalind Bengelsdorf studied at the Art Students' League as a teenager. She continued her study of art under her mentor Hans Hofmann, developing her artistic beliefs and style of abstract painting. In 1936, she became a founding member of the American Abstract Artists of New York City. That same year, she joined the Works Progress Administration (WPA) Federal Arts Project and completed murals at the Central Nurses Home on Welfare Island under Burgoyne Diller.
In 1940, Bengelsdorf married fellow artist Byron Browne, and the couple decided that she would end her art career to focus on teaching and writing. Browne subsequently worked as an art critic for Pictures on Exhibit, The New York Star, and Woman's Day and taught at the New School for Social Research until the late-1970s. After her husband's death in 1961, she returned to painting.
Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne died in Manhattan in 1979.

Administration
Author
Jayna M. Josefson
Sponsor
Processing of this collection received federal support from the Collections Care Initiative Fund, administered by the Smithsonian American Women's History Initiative and the National Collections Program
Existence and Location of Copies
Material microfilmed on 35mm microfilm reels 2013-2016 is available for use at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The collection was donated in 1978 and 1979 by Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne and her son, Stephen B. Browne.
Processing Information
The collection received a preliminary level of arrangement after donation and was partially microfilmed onto 35mm microfilm reels 2013-2016. A scrapbook of clippings was dismantled. In 2021, the collection was processed and a finding aid prepared by Jayna Josefson.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center.
Researchers interested in accessing born-digital records or audiovisual recordings in this collection must use access copies. Contact References Services for more information.
Conditions Governing Use
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Preferred Citation
Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne papers, 1910s-1980. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Related Materials
The Archives of American Art also holds an interview of Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne conducted 1968 January 29, by Irving Sandler. Also found are the papers of Rosalind Bengelsdorf Browne's husband: the Byron Browne papers, 1930-1963.

More Information

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art critics -- New York (State) -- New York Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Educators -- New York (State) -- New York Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women artists Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women painters Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women art critics Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women educators Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Browne, Byron, 1907-1961 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
O'Connor, Francis V. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
American Abstract Artists Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives of American Art
750 9th Street, NW
Victor Building, Suite 2200
Washington, D.C. 20001
https://www.aaa.si.edu/services/questions