Oral history interview with William Harper

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.harper04
Creators:
Harper, William, 1944-
Nelson, Harold B.
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America
Dates:
2004 January 12-13
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
50 Pages
Transcript
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
An interview of William Harper conducted 2004 January 12-13, by Harold B. Nelson, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in New York City, N.Y.
Scope and Contents
Harper speaks of growing up in the small town of Bucyrus, Ohio; taking art lessons as a child; attending Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Institute of Art and completing an M.S. in Art Education; exhibiting at the May Show at Cleveland Museum of Art; choosing to work in enamels, especially cloisonné, and its relationship to painting; visiting New York for the first time and seeing an exhibit of June Schwarcz's work; participating in both national juried exhibitions and solo exhibitions, including a one-man exhibition at the Renwick Gallery; and receiving the National Endowment for the Arts Craft Research Fellowship. Harper also speaks of teaching experiences at several schools; being hired at Florida State University; teaching workshops at the Penland School of Crafts; publishing his book, "Step by Step Enameling;" his affiliation with various craft and fine art galleries; moving to New York City; using precious and commonplace materials; his technique in creating pieces and the tendency to work in series, such as Pagan Babies and Pentimenti; exploring jewelry forms; and the influence of African sculpture, art history, religion, mythology, and artist Jasper Johns on his artwork. Harper also recalls Kenneth Bates, John Paul Miller, Margaret Craver, Robert Ebendorf, and others.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
William Claude Harper (1944- ) is a jeweler and enamelist from New York, N.Y.

Administration
Existence and Location of Copies
Transcript available on line
Author
Sponsor
Funding for this interview was provided by the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America. Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.

General
General
Originally recorded on 4 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 15 digital wav files. Duration is 4 hr., 29 min.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Cloisonné Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Jewelers -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Enamel and enameling Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Decorative arts Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art galleries, Commercial Function Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Schwarcz, June, 1918-2015 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America 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
https://www.aaa.si.edu/