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Women and the Arts at the Rubenstein Library: Visual Arts

Manuscript Collections

wild horsesKathy Acker Papers, 1973-1996 and undated
Cyberpunk author and performance artist. The Artwork Series contains original art work for her books. See also “Literary” and “Performing”.

Nava Atlas, 1980s-2012
This collection includes materials from her dual careers as a book artist and as a vegetarian chef and cookbook author. Includes book proposals, correspondence, proofs and dummies, reviews, and promotional pieces from many of Atlas' published works, as well as artwork, articles, and drafts from various freelance pieces.

Eugenia Hargous Macfarlane Balch Papers, 1885-1949

Clippings, notebooks, photographs, paper ephemera, and correspondence, chiefly 1885-1895, with family or friends (mostly women) concerning in part the role of women in Victorian society and Balch's early career as an artist. Also includes several small, original sketches. 400 items.

Frank Clyde Brown Papers, 1912-1974

Trinity College professor. Chiefly concerns Brown's activities with the North Carolina Folklore Society and contains items of its Folklore Collection. Included are drawings and examples of quilt patterns and handmade lace and folklorist Maude Sutton's collection of songs and games. 54,000 items.

heartsSarah E. Goodwin Needlework Patterns, 1860-[1903]
Volume into which manuscript and printed instructions and patterns for the creation of tapestries, collars, edging, capes, mittens, afghans, hoods, curtains, infant shoes, slippers, and other items were pasted and pinned. Text written on some pages indicates that the volume was once used as a commonplace book. Patterns for knitting, crocheting, quilting, embroidery, tatting, and other types of handwork are included. Collection also contains  numerous patterns for embroidered monograms and many loose patterns. 100 items.

Elsa Hasbrouck Correspondence, 1905-1938
Artist and art teacher. Comprises 152 manuscript letters by Elsa Hasbrouck to her mother, Esther, regarding her work, social life, and current events. Topics addressed in the correspondence include teaching art to children at The Children’s Community School and Winbrook School in White Plains, N.Y. 450 items.

Bettye Lane Photographs, 1970 to 1990 

Photographs documenting women’s equality and justice movements.

Clare Leighton Papers, 1940-1968
Clare Ellaline Hope Leighton was an English printmaker who immigrated to the United States in 1939. She was a member of Duke University's Dept. of Art, Aesthetics, and Music from 1943 to 1945. Her papers include woodblocks, preparatory prints and drawings, and correspondence related to Leighton's artistic practice.

kate millettKate Millett Papers, 1912-2002 and n.d.
Author, feminist theorist, activist, and visual artist. Collection includes several hundred pieces of two- and three- dimensional artwork and related materials created by Millett. Includes many large ink drawings, photomontages, nude studies, components for at least two of Millett’s large, 3-dimensional installations (The Basement and The Elegy for Sita), and layout and design notes for exhibit installations and books. 323 items.

peslikisIrene Peslikis Papers, [ca. 1962]-2003 and n.d.
Feminist artist and activist in New York City. Includes records documenting Peslikis’s involvement with the Feminist Art Institute, Redstockings, and the journal Women & Art. Also includes artwork (multimedia pieces, notebooks documenting the artistic process, sketchbooks, slides, exhibit files, and guestbooks). 18,471 items.

Clarissa Sligh Papers, 1950-2010
Clarissa Sligh is a visual artist, writer, and lecturer. When she was 15 years old she became the lead plaintiff in the 1955 school desegregation case in Virginia (Clarissa Thompson et. al. vs. Arlington County School Board). After working in math and science with NASA and later in business, she began a career as an artist, using photographs, drawings, text, and personal stories to explore themes of transformation and social justice. In 1988, she published her first artists' book "What's Happening With Momma?" through the Women's Studio Workshop in New York. Collection includes materials relating to Sligh's career as an artist, with particular focus on her various projects and exhibitions in the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s.

sandersonHarriet Sanderson Stewart Diaries, 1906-1911
Three diaries written by an affluent British woman traveling with her father. Ms. Stewart recorded her impressions of people and events aboard ships, as well as describing accommodations, entertainments, plants, and ways of life in the places she visited (the West Indies, Canada, the United States, Sri Lanka, India, Burma, North Africa, and Southern Spain). Entries are illustrated with numerous watercolors and photographs (including cyanotypes and albumen prints) by Stewart. 5 vols. This collection has been digitized.

Kristine Stiles Papers, 1990-2009
Kristine Stiles is a professor of Art and Art History at Duke University. Her main field of research is contemporary art with a focus on performance art and other interdisciplinary experimental art practices. The collection includes several different series, including Stiles' personal and family papers; projects and writings; correspondence; photographs; and an artist archive documenting her correspondence and relationships with over 60 different contemporary and modern artists from around the world.

Mary Margaret Wade Papers, 1966-2007
Artist, writer, and arts educator. She worked with artists' book press Nexus Press in Atlanta, Ga., in the 1990s before moving to Durham, NC. Collection contains personal correspondence, photographs, writings and drawings, subject files, ephemera, and clippings. The drawings and writings primarily consist of published versions and drafts of cartoons, as well as some manuscripts of writings and drawings for texts, including the artwork for Have You Ever Seen an Ugly Bride, an unpublished book by Wade and Elizabeth Lide.