These records consist of the administrative, correspondence, and exhibition files of the Department of Decorative Arts. Curator David R. McFadden and his predecessors created most of the records, but some were compiled by assistants in the department, guest curators, and exhibition organizers. Some files were created before the department was organized, and document exhibition research and the storage of objects that later came under the curatorial care of the department.
The administrative records contain object documentation files; staff meeting notes, memoranda, and reports; files on the work of interns and graduate students in the department; materials documenting the museum's participation in the Decorative Arts Association (DAA); and subject files. The correspondence files contain letters exchanged by department staff and the general public, other museums, object donors, and professional associates regarding the collections and exhibitions of the museum. The exhibition records consist largely of files on lenders to exhibitions curated or organized by the department. In addition, the files include exhibition proposals and budgets; research files and bibliographies; installation plans and blueprints; object checklists and photographs; publicity files and press clippings; and catalogue publication files.
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 506, Cooper-Hewitt Museum. Department of Decorative Arts, Records
Smithsonian Institution Archives
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