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Dwan Gallery Archives

Identifier: MSS-002

Scope and Contents

The Dwan Gallery Archives consist primarily of exhibition files for exhibitions curated by Virginia Dwan at the Dwan Gallery in Los Angeles (1959-1967) and the Dwan Gallery in New York (1965-1971). Exhibition documentation includes lists of exhibited works, installation views, invitations, press clippings, posters, and exhibition catalogs.

Some of the artists that held exhibitions at the Dwan Gallery in New York and Los Angeles include: Robert Goodnough, Robert Richenburg, Larry Rivers, Philip Guston, Yves Klein, Salvadore Scarpitta, Arakawa, Martial Raysse, Ad Reinhardt, Arman, Franz Kline, Edward Keinholz, Claes Oldenburg, Niki de Sainte Phalle, Joan Mitchell, Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Morris, Dan Flavin, Raymond Parker, Kenneth Snelson, Carl Andre, Sol LeWitt, Robert Smithson, and Anastasi. Important exhibitions documented in the archives include: Language to be Looked at and/or Things to be Read (1967-1970), Boxes (1964) Earth Works (1968), My Country 'tis of Thee (1962) and 10 (1967 and 1968).

A duplicate set of the gallery records were also donated to the Archives of American Art in 1996.


  • 1959-1971


Access Restrictions

The collection is open to researchers without restrictions. Appointments are necessary to consult manuscript and archival materials. Access copies for media materials may not be available yet. Please contact the CCS Archivist for further details.

Use Restrictions

Collection use is subject to all copyright laws. Permission to publish materials must be obtained in writing from the Director of the Library & Archives at the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College. Please contact for more information.

Biographical / Historical

Virginia Dwan, born 1931, opened her first gallery in Los Angeles, California in 1959. In 1965, Virginia Dwan moved to New York City and founded an east coast branch of the Dwan Gallery. Her Los Angeles gallery continued to operate under the direction of art dealer John Weber, until he joined Virginia Dawn in New York City upon the California gallery’s closing in 1967. Exhibitions at both branches of the Dwan Gallery showed notable Abstract Expressionist, Conceptualist, Nouveaux Realiste, Minimalist, and Land Art artists. Dwan provided early exposure for many of her artists, as well as significant financial support for avant-garde exhibitions and projects that were not commercially lucrative. The New York gallery remained in operation until 1971.


2.2 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



The Dwan Gallery Archives are arranged chronologically by exhibition, in two series. Oversize exhibition files for each venue follow the main series as follows:

Series I: Los Angeles Exhibition Files

Series II: New York Exhibition Files

Oversize Series I: Los Angeles Exhibition Files

Oversize Series II: New York Exhibition Files

Guide to The Dwan Gallery Archives
In Progress
Lydia Aikenhead and Ann Butler
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Repository Details

Part of the Center for Curatorial Studies Library & Archives Repository

Bard College
Annandale-on-Hudson 12504-5000 USA
845-758-2442 (Fax)