American Folk Art Museum Archives

David Davies Papers Edit

Summary

Identifier
A0011
Finding Aid Author
Mimi Lester
Finding Aid Date
January 2015
Description Rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of Description
English

Dates

  • 1963 – 1991 (Creation)

Extents

  • 0.75 cubic feet (Whole)
    (1 standard document case; 1 half-size document case)

Agent Links

Subjects

Notes

  • Abstract

    David Davies (1926-2012) was a collector of American folk art. He served on the board of the American Folk Art Museum from 1990 to 2010. His papers include two general files on folk art and folk artists, as well as alphabetical artist and photograph files, primarily of artists featured in his personal collection. Included in these files are photographs, correspondence between Davies and artists or dealers, printed matter from exhibitions, and press clippings.

  • Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Gift of David Davies, 1998

  • Conditions Governing Access

    The collection is open for research. Access to sensitive materials may be restricted at the discretion of the American Folk Art Museum.

  • Conditions Governing Use

    The David Davies Papers are owned by the American Folk Art Museum. The collection is subject to all copyright laws, and is dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship.

  • Preferred Citation

    [item description], [date], David Davies Papers, [box and folder number], American Folk Art Museum Archives, New York

  • Biographical Note

    David Davies (1926-2012), born in 1926 in Illinois, was a collector of American folk art, trustee of the American Folk Art Museum for twenty years, and trustee of the American Federation of the Arts for fifteen years. Davies worked in both shipping and advertising before creating a successful company called the American Calendar Co. Davies and his partner, Jack Weeden, collected many different kinds of art and were active in arts communities in both New York and California.

    Davies donated important American weathervanes to the American Folk Art Museum collection, as well as the iconic Bicycle, Livery, Carriage, and Paint Shop Trade Sign (1895–1905) and Morris Hirshfield's masterwork The Artist and His Model (1945). Davies passed away in March of 2012, at his home in California. Davies left the American Folk Art Museum a $1 million bequest to fund exhibitions. The museum established this gift as the David Davies and Jack Weeden Fund for Exhibitions.

  • Scope and Contents

    The collection includes two general files on folk art and folk artists, alphabetical artist files of photographs and slides, as well as clippings, printed matter, and correspondence. These files are primarily of artists featured in Davies’ personal collection. Many of the files have only a small amount of material in them– some with just a single biographical sheet. Exceptions to this are the folders of Vestie Davis, Harry Lieberman, Alexander Maldonado, and Jack Savitsky, all of which have a significant amount of material. Additionally, the Harry Lieberman, Alexander Maldonado, and Jack Savitsky files all have a significant amount of correspondence between Davies and either the artist or the artist’s representatives (i.e. family or gallery owners). The Jack Savitsky file also has a small drawing on a note card done by the artist for Davies. In the folder titled “Exhibitions, Weathervanes, Whirligigs, and Trade Signs,” there are 35mm slides of various artworks around mostly the northeast, including images of weathervanes and whirligigs on barns, churches, and other buildings in New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, and New York. Other places include Kentucky and California.

  • Arrangement

    The files are arranged in two series. The first series, Artist and Subject Files, is arranged in alphabetical order, by artists’ last name. Exceptions to this are the Folk art, General, and Folk artists files, which are in the beginning of the arrangement. The second series, Photographs and Negatives, is also arranged in alphabetical order.

Components