Oral history interview with Robert Chapman Turner

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.turner01
Creators:
Turner, Robert Chapman, 1913-2005
Carney, Margaret, 1949-
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America
Dates:
2001 June 11
Languages:
English
.
Physical Description:
48 Pages
Transcript
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
An interview of Robert Turner conducted 2001 June 11, by Margaret Carney, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Smithsonian Productions, in Washington, D.C.
Scope and Contents
Turner speaks of his childhood in Brooklyn, N.Y.; his father's business, Turner Concrete (now called Turner Construction); drawing classes; attending the George School for a post-graduate year before attending Swarthmore College, where his major was economics; the importance of Quakerism in his life and work; traveling throughout Europe and the Southwestern United States; his marriage to Sue, their trip to Europe during the outbreak of World War II and the difficulty of coming home to America; his involvement in war activities as a conscientious objector; the transition after the war ended into a "different reality"; visiting the different schools of craft, including Penland, Alfred, and Haystack; attending Alfred University, the teachers and students there during his years there; his relationships with other students, such as Ted Randall and Bill Schickel; teaching at Black Mountain College immediately after his graduation from Alfred; his admiration of Marguerite Wildenhain; his involvement in the first Super Mud phenomenon in 1966; how African culture fits into his work; the collaborative effort at Penland; the establishment of the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (NCECA), and his experience as the third president of the group; his "retirement" since 1979; the types of materials he uses; the awards he has received; galleries and exhibitions in which he has exhibited; and recollections of Bill Brown, founder of the Penland School of Crafts. Turner also recalls Josie Adams, Charles Harder, Kurt Ekdahl, Marion Fosdick, Bill Pitney, Jessie Shefrin, and others.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Robert Turner (1913-2005) was a ceramic artist from Alfred, N.Y. and Sandy Spring, Maryland. Margaret Carney (1949- ) is the director of the Schein-Joseph International Museum of Ceramic Art in Alfred, N.Y.

Administration
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.

General
General
Originally recorded on 2 digital audio tapes. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 23 min.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Conscientious objectors -- World War, 1939-1945 Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ceramicists -- New York (State) -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ceramicists -- Maryland -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Quakers Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Decorative arts Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (U.S.) Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America 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/