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Finding Aid to the Edward DeCelle Papers, 1969-2001
BANC MSS 2005/185c  
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Collection Details
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  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: Edward DeCelle papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1969-2001
    Collection Number: BANC MSS 2005/185c
    Creators : DeCelle, Edward Brooks
    Extent: Number of containers: 2 cartons Linear feet: 2.5
    Repository: The Bancroft Library
    University of California, Berkeley
    Berkeley, California, 94720-6000
    Phone: (510) 642-6481
    Fax: (510) 642-7589
    Email: bancref@library.berkeley.edu
    URL: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/
    Abstract: The Edward DeCelle Papers, 1969-2001, includes the correspondence, transaction records and research files of art collector and former San Francisco gallery owner Edward Brooks DeCelle.
    Languages Represented: Collection materials are in English
    Physical Location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

    Information for Researchers


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94270-6000. Consent is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission from the copyright owner. Such permission must be obtained from the copyright owner. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html .
    Restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Edward DeCelle Papers, BANC MSS 2005/185c, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Alternate Forms Available

    There are no alternate forms of this collection.

    Separated Material

    Photographs have been transferred to the Pictorial Collections of The Bancroft Library.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Barton, Crawford, 1943-
    Mapplethorpe, Robert--Exhibitions
    Tress, Arthur--Exhibitions
    DeCelle, Edward Brooks--Archives
    Art--Collectors and collecting--California--San Francisco
    Art galleries, Commercial--California--San Francisco
    Censorship--United States--History--20th century
    Gay artists--Exhibitions

    Administrative Information

    Acquisition Information

    The Edward DeCelle Papers were given to The Bancroft Library by Margaret DeCelle on February 17, 2005.


    No additions are expected.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Josh Schneider in 2005.

    Biographical Information

    Edward Brooks DeCelle was a gallery owner, curator, and fine art collector based primarily in San Francisco and Washington, D.C. Perhaps best known for the curation of the 1979 exhibit at 80 Langton in San Francisco entitled "Censored" showcasing the works of Robert Mapplethorpe, DeCelle was heavily influential in the gay renaissance of the 1970's and 1980's in San Francisco.
    From 1972-1983, DeCelle ran the Lawson DeCelle Gallery in SF, which had a strong reputation as a waypoint for young, talented gay artists. He was also a founding board member of 80 Langton (now New Langton Arts) in San Francisco. He later moved to Washington D.C. and became highly involved in the art scene there. DeCelle donated countless works to galleries and museums across the United States, including the Corcoran, Getty, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, National Portrait Gallery, and the Whitney.
    Other prominent artists represented by DeCelle include photographers Crawford Barton and Arthur Tress.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Edward Brooks DeCelle Papers, 1969-2001, includes the correspondence, transaction records and research files of art collector and former San Francisco gallery owner Edward Brooks DeCelle.
    Coverage of Robert Mapplethorpe's earliest West Coast exhibitions, including the surrounding controversy, is particularly strong. As DeCelle was personally acquainted with many of the key players in that important moment in art history, an insider's viewpoint is frequently revealed. Other notable correspondents include Arthur Tress, Crawford Barton, Thom Gunn, and San Francisco socialite Katharine Cebrian.