A Finding Aid to the Ernest Briggs Papers, circa 1900-2013, bulk 1940-1984, in the Archives of American Art

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.brigerne
Creators:
Briggs, Ernest, 1923-
Dates:
circa 1900-2013
bulk 1940-1984
Languages:
English
Collection is in English
Physical Description:
2.4 Linear Feet
Repository:
The papers of painter Ernest Briggs measure 2.4 linear feet and date from circa 1900-2013, bulk 1940-1983. The collection documents the life and career of this second generation abstract expressionist through biographical material; correspondence with artists and critics; writings and five diaries that chronicle the changing art world from 1950s-1970s; personal business records; printed material; and a significant amount of photographic material documenting the artist and his work.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The papers of painter Ernest Briggs measure 2.4 linear feet and date from circa 1900-2013, bulk 1940-1983. The collection documents the life and career of this second generation abstract expressionist through biographical material; correspondence with artists and critics; writings and five diaries that chronicle the changing art world from 1950s-1970s; personal business records; printed material; and a significant amount of photographic material documenting the artist and his work. Papers dating from after Briggs's death were created and kept by Anne Arnold.
Notable correspondents include Hubert Crehan, Mary McChesney, Dorothy Miller, Clyfford Still, and Howard Wise. One outgoing letter to Clement Greenberg offers Briggs's criticism of Art and Culture.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged as seven series
  • Series 1: Biographical Material, 1942-1984 (1 folder; Box 1)
  • Series 2: Correspondence, 1950s-2001 (0.4 linear feet; Box 1)
  • Series 3: Writings, 1960-19854 (5 folders; Box 1)
  • Series 4: Diaries, 1976-1984 (0.3 linear feet; Box 1)
  • Series 5: Personal Business Records, 19460s-2000s (0.2 linear feet; Box 1)
  • Series 6: Printed Material, 1949-2013 (0.6 linear feet; Box 1-2, OV 4)
  • Series 7: Photographic Material, circa 1900-1990, bulk 1940-1984 (0.8 linear feet; Box 2-3, OV 5)

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Ernest Briggs (1923-1984) was a second generation abstract expressionist painter working in New York City and Maine. He was born in San Diego, California and served in the U.S. Navy during World War II. After returning home, Briggs studied at the California College of Fine Art in San Francisco from 1947-1951 under Clyfford Still, Ad Reinhardt, David Park, and Mark Rothko. He moved to New York in 1953 and began exhibiting at the Stable Gallery. In 1956 Briggs was included in the Museum of Modern Art's exhibition, 12 Americans curated by Dorothy Miller. Briggs taught at Pratt Institute from 1961-1984. He was married to the sculptor Anne Arnold.

Administration
Processing Information
The collection was processed to a minimal level and a finding aid prepared by Hilary Price in 2016.
Author
Hilary Price
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Ernest Briggs donated papers in 1980 with the bulk of the collection donated in 2015 by the Anne Arnold Estate, via Robert Brooks and Janice Kasper, executors.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Conditions Governing Use
The Ernest Briggs papers, circa 1900-2013, bulk 1940-1984 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.
Preferred Citation
Ernest Briggs papers, circa 1900-2013, bulk 1940-1984. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Related Materials
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Ernest Briggs conducted by Barbara Shikler in 1982 and the papers of sculptor, Anne Arnold, Briggs' wife.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Photographs Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Diaries Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Abstract expressionism Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Miller, Dorothy Canning, 1904-2003 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Still, Clyfford, 1904-1980 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Greenberg, Clement, 1909-1994 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
McChesney, Mary Fuller Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Arnold, Anne, 1926- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Crehan, Hubert Personal 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
https://www.aaa.si.edu/