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Far Eastern Art Department Records

 Collection
Identifier: FAR
Currently the Department of East Asian Art, this department was previously titled the Department of Far Eastern Art, and before 1954, was the Division of Eastern Art, which consisted of both Chinese and Indian art, and the Department of Oriental Art. After 1954, the Division of Eastern Art split into two departments. All three offices are represented in these records, which consist of correspondence, notes, reports, articles, clippings and photographs. In 1992, the department name was changed again to the Department of East Asian Art. For records after this date and a few overlapping files generated in 1991, see "East Asian Art Department Records." See also "Indian Art Department Records," which begin primarily with the arrival of Dr. Stella Kramrisch to the Museum in 1954, after the Department of Far Eastern Art split.

Dates

  • 1924-1990

Creator

Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

The Far Eastern Art Department Records are the physical property of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Archives. The Museum holds literary rights only for material created by Museum personnel or given to the Museum with such rights specifically assigned. For all other material, literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. Researchers are responsible for obtaining permission from rights holders for publication and for other purposes where stated.

Extent

41.5 linear feet

Overview

None available.

Historical Note

The Museum's first, formal recognition of Asian art came in 1900 when it established a Department of Oriental Pottery, with Mrs. Jones Wister serving as honorary curator. At that time all other departments, which consisted of numismatics, European porcelain, arms and armor, and musical instruments, also operated under the auspices of honorary curators with Dalton Dorr serving as the Museum's sole curator. The Museum began appointing curators to its different areas of study and collecting in 1923. Having come to the Museum as an assistant two years earlier, Horace H. F. Jayne received the 1923 appointment of Curator of Oriental Art. (Paintings, lace and old Pennsylvania pottery were the other curatorial positions.) The first Curator of Oriental Art was Horace H. F. Jayne, a scholar in the field, who came as an Assistant in 1921. From 1923 until 1927 he was the Curator of Oriental Art. In 1927 he became the Chief of the Division of Eastern Art, which he remained until 1936; from 1931 until 1940 he was the Curator of Chinese Art as well. In 1928 Jayne and his Assistant, Isobel Ingram, went to China and Japan to purchase major architectural objects for the Museum, among them the Japanese Tea House and Temple and a Chinese Temple and Palace Hall. Jayne was also a Director of the University Museum of the University of Pennsylvania. He returned to the Museum in 1953 as Acting Chief of the Division of Eastern Art until 1954. From 1931 to 1954 W. Norman Brown was the Curator of Indian Art when it was in the Division of Eastern Art. Erich Schmidt, from 1931 to 1933, was the Field Director of the Expedition to Persia. Assistants following Ingram were Philip Harding Cate and Lawrence P. Roberts. Jean Gordon Lee came to the Museum in 1939 as an Assistant in the Division of Eastern Art. In 1942 she was Assistant Curator of Eastern Art, in 1944 she was made an Associate Curator of Eastern Art and in 1947 became the Curator of Chinese Art. From 1949 she was Acting Chief of the Division of Eastern Art as well as the Curator of Chinese Art. In 1955 she became the Curator of the Department of Far Eastern Art until she retired in June 1986. Felice Fischer assumed the position of Assistant Curator in the department in 1974. In 1992, the department took on its current designation of "East Asian Art," with Felice Fischer serving as the Associate Curator. In 1997 the Museum to named Ms. Fischer as the Luther W. Brady Curator of Japanese Art and Curator of East Asian Art, a position she continues to hold.

Processing Information

These materials were arranged and described by Alice Lefton, Bertha Adams and Leslie O'Neill. Funded by a grant from The National Historical Publications and Records Commission.
Title
Guide to the Far Eastern Art Department Records
Author
Finding aid prepared by Alice Lefton, Bertha Adams and Leslie O'Neill
Date
©2011
Language of description
English
Sponsor
Funded by a grant from The National Historical Publications and Records Commission
Edition statement
03/31/2011

Revision Statements

  • 9/20/2004: Kat Stefko: Updated links from "mellon-archives" to "archives.'
  • 1/20/2006: Susie Anderson: New nodes and citation
  • 6/11/2007: Bertha Adams: June 11, 2007
  • 1/22/2008: Bertha Adams: Object files to Object reference files--to clarify that these are not dept's object files
  • 3/30/2011: Susie Anderson: nhprc
  • 3/30/2011: Susie Anderson: nhprc
  • 3/31/2011: Susie Anderson: nhprc

Repository Details

Part of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Library and Archives Repository

Contact:
Philadelphia Museum of Art
PO Box 7646
Philadelphia PA 19101-7646 United States