Oral history interview with Max Spivak

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.spivak63
Creators:
Spivak, Max, 1906-1981
Phillips, Harlan B. (Harlan Buddington), 1920-
New Deal and the Arts Oral History Project
Dates:
circa 1965
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
58 Pages
Transcript
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
An interview of Max Spivak conducted circa 1963, by Harlan Phillips, for the Archives of American Art.
Scope and Contents
Spivak speaks of how he went from being an accountant to doing art; moving to Paris for three years, and how this experience changed his life; the difference between painting in Europe and painting in America; moving back to New York; why he decided to leave Paris and move back to New York; the importance of intuitive feeling; his involvement with the Gibson Committee; how he and some members of the Gibson Committee thought of the WPA; his experiences with the PWAP at the Whitney Museum; picketing outside the Mirror; his and the other artists experiences with the Project; the development of the Artist Congress; the nature of art; his work on mosaic murals; how art started losing support from the government by the late thirties; doing murals for big companies; the waning moments of the Project. He recalls Arshile Gorky, Holger Cahill, Audrey McMahon, Lee Krasner, Harold Rosenberg, Harry Knight, Lou Block, and others.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Max Spivak (1906-1981) was a painter and designer in New York, N.Y.

Administration
Existence and Location of Copies
Transcript available on-line at http://www.aaa.si.edu/collections/oralhistories/transcripts/spivak63.htm
Author
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Conducted as part of the Archives of American Art's New Deal and the Arts project, which includes over 400 interviews of artists, administrators, historians, and others involved with the federal government's art programs and the activities of the Farm Security Administration in the 1930s and early 1940s.

General
General
Originally recorded 1 sound tape reel. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 32 min.
General
Interview date changed to circa 1965 because the blackout of November 1965 is discussed in the interview.

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

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Federal aid to the arts Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- New York (State) -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mosaics Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mural painting and decoration Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Knight, Harry Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
McMahon, Audrey, 1900?-1981 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Gorky, Arshile, 1904-1948 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Rosenberg, Harold, 1906-1978 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Cahill, Holger, 1887-1960 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Block, Lou, 1895-1969 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Krasner, Lee, 1908-1984 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
New Deal and the Arts Oral History Project 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/