A Finding Aid to the Jirayr Zorthian Papers, Circa 1937-2004, in the Archives of American Art

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.zortjira
Creators:
Zorthian, Jirayr
Dates:
circa 1937-2004
Languages:
English
,
Armenian
,
Spanish; Castilian
.
Physical Description:
2 Linear feet
Repository:
The papers of Jirayr Zorthian measure 2.0 linear feet and date from circa 1937 to 2004. The papers document Zorthian's career as a muralist through correspondence with family and friends; an interview, resumes, certificates, writings, and other professional activity material; clippings, exhibition announcements and catalogs, pamphlets on the Zorthian Day Ranch for Children, and other printed material; and photographs of Zorthian, his friends and family, and some of his artwork.

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The papers of Jirayr Zorthian measure 2.0 linear feet and date from circa 1937 to 2004. The papers document Zorthian's career as a muralist through correspondence with family and friends; an interview, resumes, certificates, writings, and other professional activity material; clippings, exhibition announcements and catalogs, pamphlets on the Zorthian Day Ranch for Children, and other printed material; and photographs of Zorthian, his friends and family, and some of his artwork.
Correspondence includes letters from family and friends. There are also a small number of letters from colleagues and art institutions in regards to exhibitions.
Professional material includes sketches by Zorthian, an interview with Zorthian, some writings and observations by Zorthian and others, some financial materials such as receipts and an insurance policy, and some resumes. Also included is "Creative and a Little Bit Crazy," a video recording on the life of Zorthian, and material related to additions made to the Zorthian Day Ranch for Children.
Printed material consists of prints of some of Zorthian's artwork, newspaper clippings on Zorthian and the Zorthian Day Ranch for Children, exhibition announcements and catalogs, and pamphlets and applications for the Zorthian Day Ranch for Children.
Photographic material consists of photographs of Zorthian along with friends and family at the Zorthian Day Ranch for Children, photographs of the ranch, and photographs of some of Zorthian's murals.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged into four series.
  • Series 1: Correspondence, 1959-2001 (0.2 linear feet; Box 1)
  • Series 2: Professional Activity Files, 1970-2004 (0.4 linear feet; Box 1)
  • Series 3: Printed Material, 1959-2001 (0.5 linear feet; Boxes 1-2)
  • Series 4: Photographic Material, circa 1937-1992 (0.9 linear feet; Box 2)

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Mural painter, painter, sculptor; Los Angeles, Calif.; b. 1911; d. 2004.
Biographical / Historical
Jirayr Zorthian (1911-2004) was born in Turkey, and he immigrated to the United States with his family following World War I. Zorthian earned a Masters of Fine Arts from Yale University and went on to study art in Italy during the 1930s. Among some of Zorthian's works are eleven murals for the Tennessee State Capitol, a mural for the United States Post Office in St. Johnsville, New York titled "Early St. Johnsville Pioneers," and "Phantasmagoria of Military Intelligence Training." In the 1960s Zorthian also established a summer camp for children on his ranch, Zorthian Day Ranch for Children.

Administration
Processing Information
The collection was processed, and a finding aid prepared by Ricky Gomez in 2021.
Author
Ricky Gomez
Sponsor
The processing of this collection received Federal support from the Smithsonian Collections Care and Preservation Fund, administered by the National Collections Program and the Smithsonian Collections Advisory Committee.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated 1994 and 1995 by Jirayr Zorthian.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Researchers interested in accessing audiovisual recordings in this collection must use access copies. Contact References Services for more information.
Conditions Governing Use
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Preferred Citation
Jirayr Zorthian papers, circa 1937-2004. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Related Materials
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Jirayr Zorthian conducted by Paul Karlstrom, January 28-July 9, 1997.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Video recordings Genre Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Muralists -- California -- Los Angeles Occupation 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/