A Finding Aid to the Irving Blum Gallery and Ferus Gallery Announcements,
1961-1973
, in the Archives of American Art
Digitized Content

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.irviblum
Creators:
Irving Blum Gallery
Dates:
1961-1972
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
0.2 Linear Feet
Repository:
The Irving Blum Gallery and Ferus Gallery announcements consist of 32 announcements for exhibitions at the Los Angeles Ferus Gallery (1957-1966) and its successor the Irving Blum Gallery (1966-circa 1972). Exhibition announcements are for many exhibitions of southern California contemporary and pop artists, as well as New York artists. Artists represented by announcements include John Altoon, Don Bachardy, Larry Bell, Billy Al Bengston, Robert Irwin, Jasper Johns, Donald Judd, Craig Kauffman, Roy Lichtenstein, Edward Moses, Kenneth Noland, Ad Reinhardt, Ed Ruscha, Frank Stella, and Andy Warhol, among others.

Scope and Content Note
Scope and Content Note
The Irving Blum Gallery and Ferus Gallery announcements consist of 32 announcements for exhibitions at the Los Angeles Ferus Gallery (1957-1966) and its successor the Irving Blum Gallery (1966-circa 1972). Exhibition announcements are for many exhibitions of southern California contemporary and pop artists, as well as New York artists. Artists represented by announcements include John Altoon, Don Bachardy, Larry Bell, Billy Al Bengston, Robert Irwin, Jasper Johns, Donald Judd, Craig Kauffman, Roy Lichtenstein, Edward Moses, Kenneth Noland, Ad Reinhardt, Ed Ruscha, Frank Stella, and Andy Warhol, among others.
Although these announcements are scattered, they provide insight to and documentation of the southern California LA art scene and the Beat era. The exhibition announcements themselves are quite unique.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged as 2 series:
  • Series 1: Ferus Gallery Announcements, 1961-1965 (Box 1; 20 folders)
  • Series 2: Irving Blum Gallery Announcements, 1969-1972 (Box 1; 12 folders)

Historical Note
Historical Note
In 1957, Walter Hopps (1932-2005) and Edward Kienholz (1927-1994) opened the contemporary art Ferus Gallery on North La Cienega Boulevard in Los Angeles, California. Kienholz sold his share to Irving Blum (b. 1930) one year later. Hopps left in 1962 to become curator and, later, director of the Pasadena Art Museum. Ferus Gallery closed in 1966 and Irving Blum maintained sole ownership and changed the gallery's name to Irving Blum Gallery.
Ferus Gallery was the first gallery in the Los Angeles area to show contemporary American art, and focused heavily on contemporary Southern California artists, such as John Altoon, Larry Bell, Billy Al Bengston, Wallace Berman, Robert Irwin, Craig Kauffman, Ed Kienholz, Ed Moses, Richard Ruben, among many others. Likewise, Ferus Gallery helped to solidify the reputations of many established New York artists, including Roy Lichtenstein, Jasper Johns, Frank Stella, Richard Diebenkorn, Andy Warhol, and others.
The inaugural exhibition at the Ferus Gallery was "Objects on the New Landscape Demanding of the Eye" (March 15 - April 11, 1957), a group show including the work of Frank Lobdell, Jay DeFeo, Craig Kauffman, Richard Diebenkorn, John Altoon and Clyfford Still. Los Angeles artists who had their first solo shows at the gallery included: Wallace Berman (1957), Billy Al Bengston (1958), Ed Moses (1958), Robert Irwin (1959), John Mason (1959), Kenneth Price (1960), Llyn Foulkes (1962), Larry Bell (1962) and Ed Ruscha (1963).
In 1957 the gallery was temporarily closed after LAPD officers arrested and charged Wallace Berman with obscenity over work in his exhibition. It was his first and last solo show.
In 1962 "Andy Warhol: Campbell's Soup Cans" was Andy Warhol's first solo pop art exhibition and the first exhibition of the Soup Cans. Five of the canvases sold for $100 each, but Blum bought them back to keep the set intact.
Irving Blum designed many of the exhibition announcements for the gallery with a graphic aesthetic.
In 2007, "The Cool School" was released, a documentary film about the Ferus Gallery and its eccentric artists.

Administration
Alternative Forms Available
This site provides access to the records of Irving Blum Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.) in the Archives of American Art that were digitized in
2009
. The records have been scanned in their entirety, and total
32
images.
Processing Information
The collection was microfilmed on reel 3002 upon receipt. Later, the collection was fully processed and described by Jayna Hanson in October 2008 and scanned in 2009 with funding provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.
Author
Jayna M. Hanson
Sponsor
Funding for the processing and digitization of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art
Provenance
Mrs. Rochella Orchard donated the Ferus Gallery and Irving Blum Gallery announcements on February 22, 1979.

Using the Collection
Preferred Citation
Irving Blum Gallery and Ferus Gallery and announcements, 1961-1972. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Restrictions on Access
The collection has been digitized and is available online via AAA's website.
Ownership and Literary Rights
The Irving Blum Gallery and Ferus Gallery announcements 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.

Related Material
Also found at the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Irving Blum conducted by Paul Cummings on May 31-June 23, 1977.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Art galleries, Commercial -- California -- Los Angeles Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Johns, Jasper, 1930- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ruscha, Edward Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Stella, Frank Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Warhol, Andy, 1928- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Kauffman, Craig, 1932- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Moses, Ed, 1926- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Noland, Kenneth, 1924- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Judd, Donald, 1928- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Irwin, Robert, 1928- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ferus Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.) Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Bengston, Billy Al Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Lichtenstein, Roy, 1923-1997 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Reinhardt, Ad, 1913-1967 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Bell, Larry, 1939- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Bachardy, Don, 1934- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Altoon, John, 1925- 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/