Oral history interview with Katherine Westphal

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.westph02
Creators:
Westphal, Katherine
Austin, Carole
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America
Dates:
2002 September 3-7
Languages:
English
.
Physical Description:
58 Pages
Transcript
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
An interview of Katherine Westphal conducted 2002 September 3-7, by Carole Austin, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America.
Scope and Contents
This interview took place in Berkeley, California. Westphal speaks of drawing every day; her rewarding education experience teaching at University of California, Davis' Applied Behavioral Sciences Department; her college encounters; the World Crafts Conference in Vienna in 1980; the significance of her travels in her artwork, including trips to Egypt, Hawaii, Wyoming, and Indonesia among others; her fascination with different types of art; the non-functional aspect of her artwork; the lack of necessity to sell artwork due to her job teaching, and the personal nature of her work not driven by a "craft market"; working for the textile industry; working with agent Frederick Karoly in New York; the considerable collection Daphne Farago has made of both Katherine's and her husband, Ed Rossbach's, artwork; her working environment; her storage condo; her most precious possession, her dogs; remodeling her Berkeley home and installing a glass elevator; the artist community at UC Davis and Fiberworks before it became a school; people she took workshops with at Fiberworks; a chronology of her work from the 1960s to present day; her and Ed's retirement in 1979 and their subsequent trip to Bali; her relationship with the home health care industry when Ed became sick; her development of baskets; her love of color; her artist in residency at Rhode Island School of Design in 1980, learning to work on the Jacquard loom; her very personal collection of postcards, which she created while on trips; her dog stories; several of the shows she has been in, including "Objects: USA" and "American Crafts at the Vatican"; the commission she completed for a hotel in Tokyo; and her copy machines and the various technological advances made during her career. Westphal also recalls Gyöngy Laky, Chere Lai Mah, Pat Hickman, Greg Lynn, Helen and Tio Giambruni, Jack Lenor Larsen and others.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Katherine Westphal (1919- ) is a fiber artist in Berkeley, California. Carole Austin is an interviewer, curator, and writer in Orinda, California.

Administration
Sponsor
Funding for this interview was provided by the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America.
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.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Use requires an appointment.
Conditions Governing Access
Access is to transcript only.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Decorative arts Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Fiber artists -- California -- Berkeley -- Interviews Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Textile crafts -- California Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women artists Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women textile artists Topical Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Farago, Daphne Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Hickman, Pat (Patricia Lynette), 1941- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Karoly, Frederic, 1898-1987 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Laky, Gyöngy, 1944- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Larsen, Jack Lenor, 1927-2020 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Lynn, Greg Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Rossbach, Ed Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Fiberworks, Center for the Textile Arts Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Rhode Island School of Design Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
University of California, Davis -- Faculty 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/