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Barbara T. Smith papers.

Smith, Barbara Turner, 1931- creator.

Available at Special Collections  SPECIAL COLLECTIONS - CONTACT REFERENCE  (2014.M.14 ) and other locations()

  • Title:
    Barbara T. Smith papers.
  • Author/Creator: Smith, Barbara Turner, 1931- creator.
  • Creation Date: 1927-2012
  • Biographical/Historical Note: Barbara Turner Smith (born in Pasadena, California in 1931) has been at the forefront of artistic movements in California for over fifty years, particularly in the areas of performance and feminist art. Her work – which has taken the varied forms of painting, drawing, installation, video, performance, and artists’ book, and often involves her own body as a vehicle for her art – explores concepts that strikes at the core of human nature, including male and female sexualities, physical and spiritual sustenance, ecology, technology, and death.
  • Arrangement: Arranged in six series: Series I. Personal papers, 1949-2011, undated; Series II. Artworks, early 1940s-1994, 2003, 2009, undated; Series III. Project files, 1960s-2012, undated; Series IV. Professional files, 1948-2012, undated; Series V. Photographs, 1959-2009, undated; Series VI. Audio visual recordings, 1927, 1935-1941, 1967-2012, undated.
  • Physical Desc.: 360 boxes (185.6 linear feet).
    9 flatfiles.
    1 audio disc : analog, 45 rpm, stereo ; 7 in. original.
    246 videocassettes of 246 (VHS) ; 1/2 in. ‡ original.
    195 videocassettes of 195 (U-Matic) ; 3/4 in. original.
    13 videocassettes of 13 (Betacam SP) ; 1/2 in. original.
    75 videocassettes of 75 (Hi8) ; 8 mm original.
    4 videocassettes of 4 (Betamax) ; 1/2 in. original.
    27 videocassettes of 27 (MiniDV) ; 1/4 in. original.
    1 computer chip cartridge (USB flash drive) ; digital original.
    414 audiocassettes of 414 : analog, mono ; 3 7/8 x 2 1/2 in., 1/8 in. tape width original.
    59 audiocassettes of 59 : digital ; 2 7/8 x 2 1/8 in. original.
    96 audiotape reels of 96 : analog ; 5 in., 1/4 in. tape width original.
    21 videotape reels of 21 ; 1/2 in. original.
    2 videotape reels of 2 ; 1 in. original.
    1 videotape reel (2" quad) ; 2 in. original.
    26 film reels of 26 ; 16 mm original.
    7 film reels of 7 ; super 8 mm original.
    58 film reels of 58 ; standard 8 mm original.
    1 computer disc (floppy disk) ; 5 1/2 in. original.
    82 computer discs of 82 (CD-R) ; 4 3/4 in. original.
    33 computer discs of 33 (DVD) ; 4 3/4 in. original.
  • Summary: The collection contains 160 diaries, 54 sketchbooks, hundreds of prints and drawings, thousands of negatives and contact sheets, more than 850 vintage prints and 1100 audio and video tapes, in addition to notes, plans, and archival records related to Smith's artistic projects from student days forward. The archive encompasses not only Smith’s career as an artist, but also her work as a writer, teacher, and advocate of the arts in Los Angeles.
    Series I. Personal papers includes Smith’s diaries from the 1950s to 2009, her personal correspondence from the 1950s to 2011, and miscellaneous personal documents.
    Series II. Artworks includes finished and unfinished artworks and related material, such as artists’ books, drawings, paintings, prints, sketchbooks, Xerox artworks and poetry.
    Series III.Project files includes documents regarding the production of artworks, performances and exhibitions, as well as graphic design projects, lectures, symposia, travels, grant and funding applications, originally arranged together by the artist. It includes projects Smith participated in or curated, and material as various as photographs, sketches, drawings, notes, charts, diagrams, storyboards, receipts, correspondence, and exhibition ephemera.
    Series IV. Professional files includes material related to other activities Barbara T. Smith carried on through decades, most notably teaching, writing, and her role as a prominent advocator for artists in Los Angeles. It includes artist files (comprising press clippings, gallery ephemera, and correspondence); articles about or written by Smith; research files on topics as various as religions, environment, sexuality and women’s organizations; files regarding her various teaching appointments and the workshops she organized; and some miscellaneous papers.
    Series V. Photographs includes Smith’s vast collection of prints, contact sheets, negatives, transparencies and slides documenting her projects, her private life, as well as many topics of personal interest.
    Series VI. Audio visual material includes a vast personal section comprising Smith’s father’s family films, audio recordings of psychic readings and therapy, as well as film reels documenting daily life. The largest section includes recordings of Smith’s performances, her video works, and source materials used in the performances themselves. Many films and tapes had been copied by Smith in various formats, thus the archive frequently includes multiple copies and transfers of the same original film reel or tape. Audio visual material is unavailable until reformatted.
  • Language: English
  • Form/Genre: Artists' books (books)
    Black-and-white prints (photographs)
    Computer drawings
    Drawings (visual works)
    Gelatin silver prints
    Paintings (visual works)
    Letters (correspondence)
    Performance art
    Video art
    Video recordings
    Sound recordings
    Long-playing records
    Photographs, Original
    Born digital
  • Subjects: Smith, Barbara Turner 1931- -- Correspondence Smith, Barbara Turner 1931- -- Interviews Art, American -- California -- Los Angeles -- 20th century Artists -- California -- Correspondence Artists -- California -- Interviews Installations (Art) Performance art Performance art -- California -- Los Angeles Performance art -- Periodicals Performance art -- United States -- 20th century Video art -- California -- Los Angeles
  • Contributors: Antin, Eleanor, contributor. Baldessari, John, 1931- contributor. Buchanan, Nancy, contributor. Burden, Chris, 1946-2015, contributor. Castelli, Leo, contributor. Chicago, Judy, 1939- contributor. Cotton, Paul, 1939- contributor. Dakin, Susanna, contributor. Distel, Herbert, contributor. Kaprow, Allan, contributor. Lacy, Suzanne, contributor. McCarthy, Paul, 1945- contributor. McMillan, Jerry, 1936- photographer. Rosenthal, Rachel, 1926-2015 contributor. Schneemann, Carolee, 1939- contributor.
  • ID/Accession Number: 2014.M.14
  • Access/Rights: Open for used by qualified researchers, with the following exceptions: audiovisual materials are unavailable until reformatted. Film reels F88-F91 are unavailable pending conservation treatment. Boxes 354-355 are restricted due to fragility; contact the repository to request digital imaging. Boxes 39-41 are sealed for Barbara T. Smith lifetime. Box 42 is sealed until 2050; box 64 is sealed until 2071.
  • OCLC Record Number: 881345526
  • Source: GRI Library Catalog

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