Some days I just sit around and think about how much fun it must be to work at the Getty Research Institute, delving into the rich archives that it regularly acquires, catalogues, and preserves. In just the last few years alone, it has picked up the archives of New York’s Knoedler Gallery, Swiss curator Harald Szeemann, and Los Angeles’s Margo Leavin—legends all.
Today the GRI sent word to the press that it has made yet another choice acquisition, purchasing the archive of the multifaceted artist and writer Harmony Hammond. In addition, according to the news release, “Hammond has donated an extensive library of books and other publications related to art, feminism, and lesbian/gay/queer/trans studies.”
Hammond’s achievements are too numerous to even begin to gloss here, but they include being a founding member of both the feminist co-op gallery A.I.R. (the first of its kind) and the feminist collective Heresies in New York, writing Lesbian Art in America (2000), which was the first book to take up the subject, and making a boatload of important art.
From the release:
There is also correspondence from many notable artists and writers, such as Louise Bourgeois, Rita Mae Brown, Judy Chicago, Jill Johnston, Ana Mendieta, Kate Millett, Linda Montano, Linda Nochlin, Howardena Pindell, Adrienne Rich, Faith Ringgold, May Stevens, and Faith Wilding. The files of correspondence with Lucy Lippard, Moira Roth, and Arlene Raven are particularly rich.
“Harmony Hammond’s practice as an artist has long been integrated with her work as a scholar and teacher,” John Tain, assistant curator of modern and contemporary art at the GRI, said in a statement released to press. “Her life’s work, in every sense possible, has been to document, celebrate, and further the understanding of feminist and LGBTQ art and artists and how issues of difference are manifested in art. It is this integrated, scholarly practice that makes her archive so instructive and so deeply meaningful.”
Wouldn’t mind taking off a few weeks to go look at all that, let me tell you!