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Guide to the Duveen Brothers Records, 1876-1981, bulk 1909-1964
960015  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
Notable art dealers from the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century. The records provide a detailed view of the Duveen Brothers business activities in London, Paris, and New York. Although the archive extends from 1876 to 1981, the bulk of the material dates from Joseph Duveen's tenure as president of the firm, 1909-1939, and the period 1939-1964 when Edward Fowles directed the firm (with Armand Lowengard until 1943). The mass of documents, such as cables and letters, invoices, and ledger and stock books, give a day-by-day account of art dealing, business strategy, and the individuals involved. Included are some records from the Kleinberger Galleries, 1906-1971, and 6 linear feet of Edward Fowles's papers.
Background
Duveen Brothers, notable art dealers in London, Paris, and New York from the late nineteenth century to the mid-twentieth century, brought to America high quality old master paintings and decorative arts from the great private collections in Europe. Under the guidance of Joseph Duveen (1869-1939) and assisted by art experts, most notably Bernard Berenson, the Duveen Brothers monopolized the American art market for five decades. Duveen Brothers helped to form the art collections of many extremely wealthy Americans. A number of these collections became the nuclei of U.S. museums such as the Frick Collection, the Huntington Art Collections and the National Gallery of Art.
Extent
394.0 linear feet (584 boxes, 18 flat file folders)
Restrictions
Contact Library Reproductions and Permissions.
Availability
A microfilm copy (422 reels) of the archive is open for use by qualified researchers. The original papers are restricted because they are brittle and fragile. Additional microfilm copies of the archive have been deposited at the Thomas J. Watson Library of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Witt Library of the Courtauld Institute in London, and at the Institute national d'histoire de l'art in Paris.