A Finding Aid to the Janet Kardon Papers, 1905, circa 1950-1995, bulk 1975-1991

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.kardjane
Creators:
Kardon, Janet
Dates:
1905
circa 1950-1995
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
6.7 Linear feet
Repository:
The Janet Kardon papers measures 6.7 linear feet and date from 1905, and circa 1950-1995, with the bulk of the records dating from 1975-1991. Papers include exhibition files, professional records, legal records, photographs, printed material, and some audiovisual material. The collection primarily documents Kardon's work on various exhibitions during her time at the Philadelphia College of Art (PCA) and the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), University of Pennsylvania.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The Janet Kardon papers measures 6.7 linear feet and date from 1905, and circa 1950-1995, with the bulk of the records dating from 1975-1991. Papers include exhibition files, professional records, legal records, photographs, printed material, and some audiovisual material.
The collection primarily documents Kardon's work on various exhibitions during her time at the Philadelphia College of Art (PCA) and the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), University of Pennsylvania. The files include photographs of artwork, correspondence, audiovisual material, some insurance information, photographs of exhibitions, printed material, and ephemera. Notable people represented include David Salle, Robert Mapplethorpe, Alice Aycock, and Red Grooms.
Professional records consist of papers related to Kardon's administrative duties while at ICA, PCA, and the American Craft Museum, as well as a few panels and review boards that Kardon served on. The records consist of correspondence, printed material, a resume, audiovisual material, and some artist files.
Printed Material consists of clippings and periodicals, artist books, exhibition catalogs and announcements, and event pamphlets.

Arrangement
Arrangement
This collection is arranged as 3 series.
  • Series 1: Exhibition Files, circa 1950-circa 1995
  • Series 2: Professional Files, 1970-1993
  • Series 3: Printed Material, 1905, 1967-1991

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Art museum director and curator Janet Kardon, curated multiple exhibitions at the Philadelphia College of Art and then served as director of the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania, before her appointment as director of the American Craft Museum in New York City.
Kardon received her B.S. in education from Temple University in 1955, and her M.A. in Art History from the University of Pennsylvania in 1966. In 1984 she received an honorary Doctor of Humanities from Moore College of Art.
Kardon was a lecturer at Gwynedd Mercy College (1967) and the Philadelphia College of Art (PCA), from 1968 to 1975, and was hired by the PCA in 1975 as director of exhibitions. While at PCA, Kardon curated fifteen exhibitions including Labryinth (1975) Time (1977), Projects for PCA (1976-1978), and Artists' Sets and Costumes (1977). In 1979 Kardon accepted a position at the Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania (ICA).
During her decade-long career at ICA, Kardon curated twenty-three exhibitions including Urban Encounters: Art Architecture Audience (1980), Machineworks: Vito Acconci, Alice Aycock, Dennis Oppenheim (1981), Red Grooms' Philadelphia Cornucopia and Other Sculptopictoramas (1982), Siah Armajani (1985), David Salle (1986), and Robert Mapplethorpe: The Perfect Moment (1988). Kardon's traveling Mapplethorpe exhibition made national headlines in 1990 when Ohio prosecutors charged ICA Director Dennis Barre with obscenity due to the graphic nature of Mapplethorpe's photographs. Kardon was brought into court as an expert on the topic of photographic art and curation. The charges were ultimately dropped.
In 1989 Kardon became the director of the American Craft Museum.

Administration
Processing Information
The collection was processed and a finding aid written by Christopher DeMairo in 2019.
Author
Christopher DeMairo
Sponsor
The processing of this collection received Federal support from the Smithsonian Collections Care and Preservation Fund, administered by the National Collections Program and the Smithsonian Collections Advisory Committee.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The collection was donated by Janet Kardon in 2005.

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 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
Janet Kardon papers, 1905, circa 1950-1995. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Art museum curators -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art museum directors -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Video recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women museum curators Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Grooms, Red Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mapplethorpe, Robert Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Philadelphia College of Art Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
University of Pennsylvania. Institute of Contemporary Art 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
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