Findings

Joseph Cornell Applies to Work at the Guggenheim

Joseph Cornell letter, 1937

Joseph Cornell letter, 1937. Hilla Rebay records. A0010. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum Archives, New York

Joseph Cornell letter, 1937

Joseph Cornell letter, 1937. Hilla Rebay records. A0010. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum Archives, New York

Pollock’s application for employment at the Museum of Non-Objective Painting (forerunner of the Guggenheim Museum), New York, 1943

Jackson Pollock’s application for employment at the Museum of Non-Objective Painting, 1943. Hilla Rebay records. A0010. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum Archives, New York

In August 1937, the young artist Joseph Cornell wrote to the newly established Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation in search of “an opening somewhere in your organization for one anxious to do anything at all in order to be in an atmosphere more stimulating than his present commercial one.” Cornell continues, “While I cannot claim to be an abstractionist, I am not antagonistic to this art form…”

Unfortunately for Cornell, and for the Guggenheim, no such positions were available at the time. He was not the only celebrated artist to apply to work at a Guggenheim institution, though. As was highlighted in the exhibition Art of Another Kind: International Abstraction and the Guggenheim, 1949–1960, in 1943 Jackson Pollock applied to work at the Museum of Non-Objective Painting, the forerunner to the Guggenheim Museum.

  • http://www.guggenheim.org/new-york/collections/collection-online Carmen H

    Nice find!