Oral history interview with Raimonds Staprans
Portions of this collection are digitized

Collection ID:
Staprāns, Raimonds, 1926-
Karlstrom, Paul J.
1997 August 14-September 15
Physical Description:
107 Pages

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
An interview of Raimonds Staprans conducted 1997 August 14-1997 September 15, by Paul Karlstrom, for the Archives of American Art. The sessions were held in Karlstrom's San Francisco office.
Scope and Contents
Staprans discusses his family background; earliest childhood memories of growing up in Latvia; his father's persecution by Germans and Russians which ultimately led to their departure from Austria in 1947; living in Salem, Or.; attending University of Washington at Seattle and his contact there with Morris Graves, Mark Tobey, George Tsutakawa, and Alexander Archipenko; graduate studies at the University of California, Berkeley; and artists he admires, including Pierre Matisse, Thomas Eakins, and Edward Hopper.
Scope and Contents
Staprans discusses at length Wayne Thiebaud and Richard Diebenkorn; and comparisons made to his work. He discusses his sensuality as a basis for his life and art; early gallery experiences; his thoughts on criticism and reviews; his relationship with Fred Maxwell of the Maxwell Galleries in San Francisco and how his loyalty to the gallery held back his career; stresses in his marriage and of raising children; the breakup of his marriage and immersion in painting and sculpture; his decorative works under the nom de plume Carl Ulmanes; developing feelings of dejection and cynicism which nearly ended his art career and recovering from those feelings; his playwriting career; and his views on both careers.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Raimonds Staprans (1926-) is a painter and playwright from San Francisco, California.

Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics, and administrators.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Funding for this interview provided by the Jewish Communal Fund.

Originally recorded on 7 sound cassette. Reformatted in 2010 as 14 digital wav files. Duration is 7 hr.. 20 min.

Digital Content

Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Painters -- California -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- Washington (State) -- Seattle Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Thiebaud, Wayne Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Diebenkorn, Richard, 1922-1993 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Maxwell Galleries 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