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Quick (Herbert) Collection
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Scope and Contents
  • Biography
  • Arrangement
  • Acquisition Information
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Access

  • Contributing Institution: California Museum of Photography
    Title: Herbert "Herb" Quick Collection
    Identifier/Call Number: 2007.0011
    Physical Description: 14.4 Linear Feet
    Date (inclusive): 1931-2006
    Abstract: The Herbert "Herb" Quick Collection, 1931-2006, documents the career of egalitarian Herbert Quick as a California photographer and instructor of photography at the University of Riverside, California.
    Language of Material: English .

    Scope and Contents

    The Herbert "Herb" Quick Collection, 1931-2006, consists primarily of photographic materials, correspondence, financial papers, and printed materials. The majority of the collection is negatives (Series I) from his early work as a child in 1931 through 2004. The bulk of the negatives are from 1970s to 1980s. Most of the negatives in the collection were made into contact prints ranging from 1931-2002.
    The bulk of the correspondence (Series II) consists of correspondence to Herbert Quick from photographers, art galleries, publishers, and colleges/universities, from 1953-2006. He corresponded with photographers including Ansel Adams, Richard Garrod, Milton Halberstadt, and Max Yavno.
    The financial papers (Series III) consist of donations by Herbert Quick to UCR/California Museum of Photography and the University of California, Riverside. The bulk of the donations were made through 1981-1999. This series also includes receipts from purchases, sold, and loaned materials of Herbert Quick ranging from 1951-2005, the bulk of the receipts are from 1976-1994. This series also includes legal papers such as Quick's last will and testament dated and signed in 2004.
    The printed material (Series IV) consists of announcements/advertisements and programs/booklets. The bulk of this series are programs and announcements of Quick's shows and exhibitions such as the Photographic Directions: Los Angeles 1979 exhibition, The Collectible Moment at the Norton Simon Museum in 2006, Auctions: Print Auction Houston Center Photography, and exhibitions at the California Museum of Photography featuring Quick. This series also includes press releases and newsletters from 1963 George Eastman House exhibition on understanding contemporary photography from past to present, and a press release for Kodak paper, relating to Quick's work on Kodak's Advisory Committee.
    The smaller components of the collection are writings, clippings, college/university papers, personal materials, and audiovisual materials. The writings (series V) consist of works from Quick and by others such as Edward Beardsley and Quick's brother Richard Quick. The work by his brother was written in 1946, and is a report on the development of Riverside. It includes various maps and postcards of Riverside, California. The clippings consist of magazine and newspaper clippings ranging from 1954-2006.
    The college/university papers (Series VI) consist of papers Quick has collected from the University of California, Riverside and Riverside City College. These papers include Quick's roster of students for his courses such as large format photography. The personal materials (Series VII) consist of geological papers, awards such as the World War II metals he obtained for his service in 1941-1945. In addition, he received the Riverside Arts award in 1979 and in 1998 he received an award from UCR/California Museum of Photography. The audiovisual materials (Series VII) include a DVD and VHS on Herbert Quick photographic work.


    Herbert Quick was born in Manistique, Michigan in 1925. In the early 1930s at the age of six he developed an affinity for photography, which is demonstrated through his depictions of the Seils-Sterling Circus. However, in 1943 he put photography on hold to serve in the United States Navy. Quick received the American Campaign and Good Conduct medals for his service in World War II.
    In the late 1940s Quick went on to pursue a career in photography. He received his formal training in photography at the Art Center School of Design in Los Angeles, California. During his training he learned fundamental techniques in photography such as commercial and zone system applications. He met and was given guidance by Edward Weston who was then suffering physical decline from Parkinson's disease. He was befriend by Dorothea Lange and for a time worked as her printer, He later took course at Art Center School of Design from Fred Archer and Ansel Adams, maintaining a correspondence with the latter. Quick also received guidance from Max Yavno, his life-long friend, who helped him further develop his style of photography. Quick's main subjects to photograph were architecture, portraits, and landscapes.
    From 1950 to 1958 Quick owned Sirks' Camera shop in Riverside, California. It was only a matter of time in 1964, until he became a staff photographer and lecturer at the University of California, Riverside, introducing large format photography into the curriculum. In 1975 he became a member of the Photography Advisory Committee at Riverside City College. In 1982 he also served on the Advisory Committee for the development of premium black-and-white photographic paper for the Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, New York.
    In1975 he became the Manager of Photographic Services at the University of California, Riverside. However, in the early 1980s, Quick's position as manager was in jeopardy due to university cut backs. However, there was an outpour of letters from faculty, former students, and community members urging university administrative officials to retain Quick's photographic services on campus. Quick went on to be manager until 1996.
    Not only did his career in photographic education flourish, so did his artistic career. Quick was showcased in many one-man and group exhibitions in galleries and museums, such as the Camera Work Gallery; Palos Verdes Art Center; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House; the Norton Simon Museum; National Museum of Canada; and the Museum of Modern Art in Mexico City, among others. Some of Quick's most notable work are the Seils Sterling Circus, 1931; Bath House, Lake Elsinore, California, 1951; portraits of Kid Ory, 1946; Carousel, Tilden Park, Berkeley, California, 1952; My Kitchen Sink, 1966; and Guard, Pan Pacific Auto Show, 1970. However, his most loved work was the depiction of growth and development of California, especially the city of Riverside.
    In 2006 Quick passed away at the age of 81.


    Whenever possible, original order of this collection was maintained.

    Acquisition Information

    This collection was bequeathed to UCR/CMP by the artist.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has been assigned to the UCR/California Museum of Photography. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Curator of Collections.

    Preferred Citation

    Herbert "Herb" Quick Collection, UCR/California Museum of Photography, University of California, Riverside.


    Collection is open for research, by appointment.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Personal correspondence
    Gelatin silver prints
    Black-and-white negatives