A Finding Aid to the Ray Yoshida Papers, circa 1895-2010, bulk 1950-2005, in the Archives of American Art
Digitized Content

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.yoshray
Creators:
Yoshida, Ray
Dates:
circa 1895-2010
bulk 1950-2005
Languages:
Multiple languages
Collection is in English and Japanese.
English; Japanese
Physical Description:
10 Linear feet
Repository:
The papers of Chicago artist and educator Ray Yoshida measure 10 linear feet and date from circa 1895 to 2010, with the bulk of the material dating from 1950 to 2005. Yoshida's career as a painter and collagist as well as his long tenure as a professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago are documented through biographical material, personal correspondence, notebooks and writings, teaching records, personal business records, printed material, source material, photographs, sketchbooks, artwork by Yoshida and others, and scrapbooks. Items within the collection also document Yoshida's personal interest in collecting folk art and artifacts.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The papers of Chicago artist and educator Ray Yoshida measure 10 linear feet and date from circa 1895 to 2010, with the bulk of the material dating from 1950 to 2005. Yoshida's career as a painter and collagist as well as his long tenure as a professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago are documented through biographical material, personal correspondence, notebooks and writings, teaching records, personal business records, printed material, source material, photographs, sketchbooks, artwork by Yoshida and others, and scrapbooks. Items within the collection also document Yoshida's personal interest in collecting folk art and artifacts.
Biographical material about Ray Yoshida includes award certificates, identification records, student records, and interview transcripts. Also found is one video recording of a documentary short about Yoshida's art and object collection at his Chicago home.
Correspondence includes letters, postcards, and greeting cards from friends, colleagues, and artists, including Roger Brown, Jim Nutt, Gladys Nilsson, Christina Ramberg, Karl Wirsum, Miyoko Ito, Jin Soo Kim, Barbara Rossi, Vera Berdich, and Tom Kapsalis.
Notebooks contain notes on art history, art technique, Japanese language, travel, and other subjects. Many of the notebooks include sketches and contain loose items.
Writings by Yoshida consist of college papers, fragments of writings on art and other subjects, and notes. Writings by others include essays by Yoshida's students, exhibition essay drafts, and poetry.
Teaching records primarily document Yoshida's tenure as a professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, though a few records of guest professorships at other schools are included. These records include course evaluations, employment records, teaching notes, and letters of recommendation for students. Miscellaneous teaching records include department memos, course summaries, correspondence, and notes.
Personal business records consists of documentation regarding the sale, exhibition, and loan of artwork by Ray Yoshida, including his business dealings with the Phyllis Kind Gallery. Additionally there are several files regarding the estate of artist Roger Brown.
Printed material includes exhibition catalogs, announcements, news clippings, newsletters and press releases documenting Yoshida's career and other subjects.
Source material consists of material that Yoshida gathered and intended to use for his art. Collected printed material includes postcards, comics and comic books, mail order catalogs, magazines, product labels, and advertisements. Also found are many small clippings from comics collected for collages.
Photographs depict Ray Yoshida, friends, students, travel, and artwork. Also found are a few photographs of Karl Wirsum's studio, as well as photographs of various subjects collected by Yoshida. Additionally, there is one photograph album from the early 1910s of an unidentified family.
Sketchbooks include pencil and ink sketches of various subjects.
Artwork by Ray Yoshida includes collages on paper, pencil sketches, and ink drawings. Artworks by others include numerous prints by Kathleen Blackshear, Ethel Spears, and Vivian Mayers, and collages, drawings, and prints given to Yoshida by students and friends. Some work by unidentified artists is included as well. Other artwork, such as handmade picture and alphabet books, appears to have been created by children and collected by Yoshida.
Scrapbooks include volumes that were created by Yoshida as well as books created by others. Three of the scrapbooks containing source images, clippings, and comics appear to have been created by Yoshida. Additional scrapbooks were created by others and collected by Yoshida.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged as 12 series.
  • Series 1: Biographical Material, 1950-2005 (0.5 Linear feet; Box 1)
  • Series 2: Correspondence, 1952-2009 (2 Linear feet; Boxes 1-3, 11, 15)
  • Series 3: Notebooks, circa 1956-circa 2000 (0.3 Linear feet; Box 3)
  • Series 4: Writings, circa 1950-2003 (0.3 Linear feet; Box 3)
  • Series 5: Teaching Records, circa 1960-2003 (0.6 Linear feet; Boxes 3-4)
  • Series 6: Personal Business Records, circa 1960-2010 (0.4 Linear feet; Box 4)
  • Series 7: Printed Material, 1906-2010 (1.8 Linear feet; Boxes 4-6, 11, OV 14)
  • Series 8: Source Material, circa 1940-circa 2005 (0.7 Linear Feet; Boxes 6-7, 11)
  • Series 9: Photographs, circa 1910-circa 2005 (0.5 Linear feet; Box 7)
  • Series 10: Sketchbooks, circa 1960-circa 2000 (1.1 Linear feet; Boxes 7-8, 11-13)
  • Series 11: Artwork, 1903-2009 (0.7 Linear feet; Boxes 8, 13)
  • Series 12: Scrapbooks, circa 1895-circa 2005 (1 Linear feet; Boxes 8-10, 13)

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Ray Yoshida (1930-2009) was a painter, collagist, and educator in Chicago, Illinois.
Raymond Kakuo Yoshida was born in Kapaa, Hawaii, in 1930. He attended the University of Hawaii for two years and completed a B.A. in Arts Education at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1953. He also served in the U.S. Army for two years during the Korean War. In 1957 he recieved his M.F.A from Syracuse University and became a faculty member at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1959. He was named Frank Harold Sellers Professor in the Department of Painting and Drawing in 1971, retired as professor emeritus in 1998, and continued to teach until 2003.
Yoshida was a member of the Chicago Imagists, a loose and informal group of representational artists from the late 1960s to early 1970s who were influenced by Surrealism and connected to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Yoshida's friends and contemporaries among this group include but are not limited to Roger Brown, Ed Paschke, Christina Ramberg, and Barbara Rossi. Yoshida was an inspiring teacher and he mentored many of the later Chicago Imagists such as Gladys Nilsson, Jim Nutt, and Karl Wirsum.
Yoshida's paintings and collages were strongly influenced by comics as well as his own collection of folk and outsider art. He regularly exhibited at Phyllis Kind Gallery in Chicago from 1975 to 1996, and a major retrospective of his work was organized by the Contemporary Museum of Honolulu in 1998. He retired to Hawaii in 2005 where he lived until his death in 2009 due to cancer. The School of the Art Institute of Chicago's Sullivan Galleries held a posthumous retrospective exhibition of Yoshida's work from 2010-2011 and the John Michael Kohler Art Center had an exhibition of Yoshida's personal collection of art and artifacts in 2013.

Administration
Processing Information
The collection was processed to a minimal level and a finding aid prepared by Erin Kinhart in 2015. An unprocessed addition of 2 linear feet was donated in 2015-2016 and added to the end of the collection. All accessions were merged, the collection was fully processed, and the finding aid was revised by Rihoko Ueno in 2017. The digitization of the Ray Yoshida papers received Federal support from the Asian Pacific American Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.
Existence and Location of Copies
The bulk of the collection was digitized in 2017 and is available on the Archives of American Art's website. Materials which have not been digitized include blank pages, blank versos of photographs, duplicates, and some source material. In some cases, exhibition catalogs and other publications have had their covers, title pages, and relevant pages digitized.
Author
Erin Kinhart and Rihoko Ueno
Sponsor
The processing and digitization of the Ray Yoshida papers received Federal support from the Asian Pacific American Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The collection was donated in 2012 by Ray Yoshida via Terri Yoho of the Kohler Foundation, representing Yoshida's estate, and in 2013 and 2015-2016 by Jennifer Sabas and Shayle Miller, estate executors.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate copy requires advance notice. One box of letters from Jim Nutt are ACCESS RESTRICTED; use requires written permission.
Preferred Citation
Ray Yoshida papers, circa 1895-2010, bulk 1950-2005. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Conditions Governing Use
The Ray Yoshida 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.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Folk art -- Collectors and collecting Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art -- Study and teaching Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Photographs Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sketchbooks Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Scrapbooks Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Educators -- Illinois -- Chicago Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Collagists -- Illinois -- Chicago Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- Illinois -- Chicago Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art -- History Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art -- Technique Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Artists' studios -- Photographs Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Asian American artists Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Collages Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Drawings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Prints Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sketches Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Transcripts Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Video recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Berdich, Vera, 1915-2003 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Blackshear, Kathleen, 1897-1988 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Brown, Roger, 1941-1997 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ito, Miyoko, 1918-1983 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Kapsalis, Thomas Harry, 1925- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Kim, Jin Soo, 1950- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Nilsson, Gladys, 1940- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Nutt, Jim, 1938- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ramberg, Christina Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Rossi, Barbara, 1940- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Spears, Ethel, 1903-1974 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Wirsum, Karl, 1939- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art Institute of Chicago. School -- Faculty Corporate Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Phyllis Kind Gallery 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/