A Finding Aid to the Kate Lang Papers,
1921-1996
, in the Archives of American Art

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.langkate
Creators:
Lang, Kate, 1910-1996
Dates:
1921-1996
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
1.1 Linear feet
Repository:
The papers of self-taught artist Kate Lang consist of a biographical sketch; letters, cards, and instructions from a patron for paintings; notes and other writings; lists of sales and other financial records; newspaper articles about Lang; exhibition announcements; printed source material for paintings; and photographs and snapshots of Lang as a young girl as well as color photographs and snapshots of her artwork. The collection measures 1.1 linear feet and dates from 1921 to 1996.

Scope and Content Note
Scope and Content Note
The Kate Lang papers measure 1.1 linear feet and date from 1921 to 1996. The collection documents the artistic career and creative process of Arlington, Virginia-based self-taught painter Kate Lang. The collection contains a brief biographical account, scattered professional and personal correspondence, writings and notes with sketches by Kate Lang, financial records, clippings, exhibition announcements, and numerous photographs and snapshots of Kate Lang, her artwork, friends and family. The collection compliments the Archives' material on self-taught artists and provides some useful evidence of an alternative market for painting.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged as six series:
  • Series 1: Biographical Material, 1992 (Box 1; 1 folder)
  • Series 2: Letters, 1992-1996, undated (Box 1; 3 folders)
  • Series 3: Writings, 1992-1994, undated (Box 1; 6 folders)
  • Series 4: Financial Records, 1990-1996, undated (Box 1; 2 folders)
  • Series 5: Printed Material, 1991-1996, undated (Box 1, OV 2; 5 folders)
  • Series 6: Photographs, 1921-circa 1990s (Box 1, OV 2; 0.6 linear feet)

Biographical Note
Biographical Note
Kate Lang, born Kathryn Louise Barbour in 1910 in Mobile, Alabama, started painting at age 80. A self-taught artist, she sold her paintings at local flea markets (Washington, D.C.'s Eastern Market on Saturdays and Georgetown Market on Sundays) until her death in 1996. Lang excelled at celebrity and pet portraits painted in the style of contemporary folk art. She held exhibitions at Connection Gallery in Washington, D.C. and George Washington University's Dimrock Gallery in 1992 and at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in 1995.

Administration
Processing Information
The papers were processed in July 2004 by Jetta Samulski. The finding aid was updated to include the 2009 addition in July 2015 by Kimberley Henze.
Author
Jetta Samulski
Provenance
The papers were donated in 2001 and 2009 by Richard Lang, the son of Kate Lang.

Using the Collection
Restrictions on Access
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington, D.C. research facility.
Ownership and Literary Rights
The Kate Lang papers 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.
Preferred Citation
Kate Lang papers, 1921-1996. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Photographs Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Washington (D.C.) -- Social life and customs Place Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Flea markets -- Washington (D.C.) Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painting, American -- Economic aspects Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Self-taught artists -- Washington (D.C.) Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women painters -- Washington (D.C.) Topic 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/