A Finding Aid to the Ed Clark Papers, 1923-2017, in the Archives of American Art

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.clarked
Creators:
Clark, Edward, 1926-
Dates:
1923-2017
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
8.9 Linear feet
Repository:
The papers of African American abstract expressionist painter Ed Clark measure 8.9 linear feet and date from 1923 to 2017. The collection documents Clark's work as a professional artist through biographical material; correspondence with family, galleries, and friends, most notably Cinque Gallery, Herbert Gentry, Bill Hutson, and Ted Joans; writings, including documentation for the book Edward Clark: For the Sake of the Search; personal business records, including consignment and sales records; and material related to professional activities, including files on significant exhibitions and projects, gallery files, and teaching records. Also in the collection are exhibition announcements, catalogs, news clippings, and other printed material documenting Clark's work; photographic material depicting Ed Clark, his artwork, and other individuals; and a small amount of original artwork by Clark and others.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The papers of African American abstract expressionist painter Ed Clark measure 8.9 linear feet and date from 1923 to 2017. The collection documents Clark's work as a professional artist through biographical material; correspondence with family, galleries, and friends, most notably Cinque Gallery, Herbert Gentry, Bill Hutson, and Ted Joans; writings, including documentation for the book Edward Clark: For the Sake of the Search; personal business records, including consignment and sales records; and material related to professional activities, including files on significant exhibitions and projects, gallery files, and teaching records. Also in the collection are exhibition announcements, catalogs, news clippings, and other printed material documenting Clark's work; photographic material depicting Ed Clark, his artwork, and other individuals; and a small amount of original artwork by Clark and others.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged as eight series.
  • Series 1: Biographical Material, 1943-2016 (Boxes 1, 10; 0.5 linear feet)
  • Series 2: Correspondence, 1926, circa 1943-2016 (Boxes 1-3; 2.1 linear feet)
  • Series 3: Writings, 1955, 1980-2006, 2015, undated (Boxes 3-4, 10; 0.7 linear feet)
  • Series 4: Personal Business Records, 1953, 1966-2015 (Boxes 4, 10; 0.9 linear feet)
  • Series 5: Professional Activities, circa 1954-2016 (Boxes 4-5, 10; 0.7 linear feet)
  • Series 6: Printed Material, 1923-1926, 1950-2017, undated (Boxes 5-8, 10, OV 11-14; 3.3 linear feet)
  • Series 7: Photographic Material, 1928, 1952-2014, undated (Boxes 8-9, 10; 0.6 linear feet)
  • Series 8: Artwork, 1977-1997, undated (Boxes 9-10, OV 14; 0.1 linear feet)

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Ed Clark (1926- ) is an abstract expressionist painter who worked in Paris, France and New York. Clark was born in New Orleans, Louisiana in 1926. He studied at the Art Institute of Chicago from 1946 to 1951 and enrolled at the Académie de la Grande Chaumièré in Paris after his arrival there in 1952. After his return to the United States, Clark became a charter member of the Brata Gallery. In 1957 he premiered his shaped canvas at the Brata Gallery Christmas group show. This shaped canvas is generally considered to be the first of its kind. In 1958, he began using a push broom to apply broad strokes of color to canvases on his studio floor.
Ed Clark has received multiple awards and honors including the National Endowment for the Arts' Master Award (1972), the United States Congressional Achievement Award (1994), and the Art Institute of Chicago's Legends and Legacy Award (2013). He has exhibited widely and his work is held in many collections including the Art Institute of Chicago, the California Afro-American Museum, the Centro de Arté Moderno in Guadalajara, Mexico, the Detroit Institute of the Arts, Louisiana State University, the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, and the New York Public Library Schomburg Center.

Administration
Processing Information
The collection was processed and a finding aid prepared by Rayna Andrews in 2018 with funding from the Henry Luce Foundation.
Author
Rayna Andrews
Sponsor
Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Henry Luce Foundation.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The Ed Clark papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by Melanca Clark, Ed Clark's daughter.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Use of archival audiovisual recordings and born-digital records with no duplicate copies requires advance notice.
Preferred Citation
Ed Clark papers, 1923-2017. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Related Materials
A 30-minute documentary recording, Ed Clark: a brush with success (2007) produced by Mark Hammond and Charles Martin is available at the Anacostia Community Museum Library.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
African American artists Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- France -- Paris Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Abstract expressionism Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painting, Abstract Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Shaped canvas Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Cinque Gallery Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Gentry, Herbert, 1919-2003 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Hutson, Bill, 1936- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Joans, Ted 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/