- Collection ID:
- Physical Description:
The papers of art critic, curator, and educator April Kingsley and painter, sculptor, writer, and educator Budd Hopkins measure 11 feet and 0.209 Gigabytes, and date from circa 1945-2017. Kingsley's papers are comprised primarily of artist files for figures that April had a significant engagement with, project files, interviews with artists, subject file index cards, biographical materials, and miscellaneous correspondence. Hopkins' papers are comprised of biographical material, as well as correspondence with various prominent art world figures including Richard Diebenkorn, Robert Motherwell, Carl Andre, Howardena Pindell, and Robert Rosenblum. Hopkins' personal business records include correspondence and sale and consignment information. Also found are writings, printed material, including exhibition invitations and catalogs and press clippings, and photographic material depicting Hopkins and his artwork.
Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The papers of art critic, curator, and educator April Kingsley and painter, sculptor, writer, and educator Budd Hopkins measure 11 feet and 0.209 Gigabytes, and date from circa 1945-2017. Kingsley's papers are comprised primarily of artist files for figures that April had a significant engagement with, with contents ranging from correspondence to printed material, including invitations and catalogs and press clippings, as well as notes and manuscript material including reviews. Project files include various topics of interest and research for tentative and actualized exhibitions, as well as writing projects and committee work related to Kingsley's tenure at the American Craft Museum and the Kresge Museum at Michigan State University. Also found are recorded interviews with artists and other figures conducted by April Kingsley between the years of 1988 and 1990, most of which are affiliated with the Abstract Expressionist movement. The subject file index cards are comprised of various sets of notes and citations regarding themes, movements, and artists central to Kingsley's ongoing research throughout her career. Also included are various biographical materials and miscellaneous correspondence that comprise the personal papers subseries.
Hopkins' papers are comprised of biographical material including biographies and a chronology, correspondence with various prominent art world figures including Richard Diebenkorn, Robert Motherwell, Carl Andre, Howardena Pindell, and Robert Rosenblum. Personal business records include correspondence and sale and consignment information related to particular galleries, as well as records regarding the Long Point Gallery co-founded by Hopkins and twelve other artists on Cape Cod in 1977. His writings include manuscript material regarding one of Hopkins' titles on UFO abductions, as well as various typescripts for reviews and essays written by Hopkins, as well as one audio recording for a lecture regarding his essay "Modernism and the Collage Aesthetic." Printed material including exhibition invitations and catalogs and press clippings are also found. Photographic materials include images of Hopkins, exhibition installations, and artwork in various formats, such as photographic prints, negatives, slides, and transparencies.
The collection is arranged in two series:
- Series 1: April Kingsley papers, circa 1960s-2017 (7.7 Linear Feet; Boxes 1-8, 0.209 Gigabytes; ER01)
- Series 2: Budd Hopkins papers, circa 1945-2010 (3.3 Linear Feet; Boxes 7, 9-11)
Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
April Kingsley (1941- ) is an art historian, critic, and curator living in Harwich, Massachusetts. Budd Hopkins (1931-2011) was an Abstract Expressionist artist and writer of both art criticism and UFO and abduction phenomena accounts, who lived primarily in New York City and Cape Cod.
Following a short-lived career as a nurse while married to her first husband, Kingsley completed a Masters of Fine Arts from New York University, and later a PhD in Art History from the City University Graduate Center. Kingsley studied in depth the Abstract Expressionist art movement, and also focused heavily on women artists and contemporary craft art. Kingsley held curatorial positions at a range of institutions including at The Museum of Modern Art, The American Craft Museum, and at the Pasadena Art Museum. She has written major monographs on numerous artists including Jean Miotte and Alice Dalton Bown, and contributed to the catalogs of more than 75 artists. Among her most notable publications are The Turning Point: The Abstract Expressionists and the Transformation of American Art (1992) and Emotional Impact: American Figurative Expressionism (2013). Kingsley and Hopkins were married from 1973-1991, and had one daughter, Grace Hopkins-Lisle. Kingsley currently resides in Harwich, Massachusetts with her husband Donald Spyke, who she married in 2005.
Born Elliott Budd Hopkins in 1931 in Wheeling West Virginia, Hopkins survived an early battle with polio as a toddler, following which a period of convalescence made an early engagement with drawing possible. He graduated from Oberlin College with an art history degree where he heard a lecture from a future mentor Robert Motherwell. After college Hopkins moved to New York City and became a fixture of the Abstract Expressionist circle, and by 1956 had his first solo show of paintings. In 1976 he earned a Guggenheim Fellowship as well as a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1979. His paintings, which range from gestural Abstract Expressionism to color plane geometric compositions are held in major museum collections ranging from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the British Museum. In the 1980s Hopkins turned to making large scale sculptures evocative of ancient ritualist architecture, an addition to his well-known painting practice. Hopkins also published a number of reviews of the work of other artists which were very well received at the time. As much as his art career perhaps, Budd Hopkins is known for spreading the word about alien abduction in his popular books on the subject, following a UFO sighting he recounts in Cape Cod in 1964. While Hopkins does not claim to have been abducted he regularly held support groups for others to share their stories. He passed in 2011 in his home in New York City.
The collection was processed and a finding aid prepared by Ryan Evans in 2019.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The bulk of April Kingsley and Budd Hopkins papers was donated in 2018 by Grace Hopkins, their daughter. Portions of the Budd Hopkins papers were donated by Budd Hopkins between 1980 and 1983.
Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Use
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 born-digital records or audiovisual recordings in this collection must use access copies. Contact References Services for more information.
April Kingsley and Budd Hopkins Papers, circa 1945-2017. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Archives of American Art
750 9th Street, NW
Victor Building, Suite 2200
Washington, D.C. 20001