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Finding aid for the Georges Turpin journals and letters, 1914-1952
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Biographical/Historical Note
  • Administrative Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Georges Turpin journals and letters
    Date (inclusive): 1914-1952
    Number: 940116
    Creator/Collector: Turpin, Georges, 1885-
    Physical Description: 2.9 linear feet (7 boxes)
    The Getty Research Institute
    Special Collections
    1200 Getty Center Drive, Suite 1100
    Los Angeles, California, 90049-1688
    (310) 440-7390
    Abstract: French critic and poet. The collection consists of Turpin's journals from 1914 to 1952 as well as a set of ca. 240 letters received and critical studies and eulogies. Letters from some 50 correspondents, mostly artists, concern reviews, exhibitions, sales of paintings, and publications, and often contain musings on artistic theory and practice.
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    Language: Collection material is in French

    Biographical/Historical Note

    French critic and poet.

    Administrative Information


    Open for use by qualified researchers.

    Publication Rights

    Preferred Citation

    Georges Turpin journals and letters, 1914-1952, Getty Research Institute, Research Library, Accession no. 940116.

    Acquisition Information

    The present collection assembles two separate collections. Approximately 190 letters from Georges Turpin were acquired in 1985 with an original accession number of 850812. The journals were not acquired until 1994. The journals themselves contained, interleaved, ca. 150 letters. Those letters have been integrated with the earlier acquisition and are now housed in Box 7 of the present collection.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The collection consists of Georges Turpin's journals from 1914 to 1952 as well as a set of ca. 240 letters received and six essays comprised of critical studies and eulogies. Turpin begins the journal in 1914, using loose leaf paper; in 1934, he starts writing in bound diaries or agenda. Turpin's journals bring the artistic and literary world of early and mid century Paris back to life. On Mondays and then later on Sundays, Turpin received his artist friends at his home to discuss art and politics. He frequently visited the studios of various artists, offering detailed descriptions of the workplace and conversation. Finally, Turpin paid attention to the particulars of the art world by recording how much a painting brought at auction, how the winner of a prize was chosen or who were the members of a certain committee. The letters add even more context. From some 50 correspondents, mostly artists, they concern reviews, exhibitions, sales of paintings and publications. They often contain musings on artistic theory and practice.
    In 1935, Turpin tells us why he wrote the journal: "Dans ce journal je me plairai à dire, cette année encore, ce qu'on ne dit pas, à noter ce qu'on ne note pas pour qu'il puisse servir à l'histoire artistique de ce temps. Je voudrais qu'on puisse le publier un jour en y intercalant jour par jour, semaine par semaine, les restes d'art que j'essaime dans revues et journaux. On aurait aussi une sorte de vue générale, de vue d'ensemble sur le mouvement artistique contemporain."

    Arrangement note

    The papers are organized in two series: Series I. Journals, 1914-1952; Series II. Letters

    Indexing Terms

    Subjects - Names

    Turpin, Georges, 1885-

    Subjects - Topics

    Art critics--France
    Artists' studios--France--Paris
    World War, 1939-1945--France--Paris

    Subjects - Places

    Paris (France)--History--1914-1918
    Paris (France)--History--1940-1944
    Paris (France)--Intellectual life--20th century

    Genres and Forms of Material

    Diaries--France--20th century


    Barbey, M. F.
    Dongen, Kees van, 1877-1968
    Duval-Gozlan, Léon
    Girieud, Pierre, 1876-1948
    Kupka, František, 1871-1957
    Lecomte, Georges, 1867-1958
    Lévy-Dhurmer, Lucien, 1865-1953
    Mauclair, Camille, 1872-1945
    Montezin, Pierre Eugene, 1874-1946
    Peské, Jean, 1870-1949
    Renefer, Jean Constant Raymond, 1879-1957
    Villon, Jacques, 1875-1963