Seitz, William Chapin

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Art historian and painter; Charlottesville, Va.; b. 1914; d. 1974; taught at the University of Virginia.

From the description of William Chapin Seitz papers, 1934-1995. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 82466245

Artist, art historian, author and educator, William Chapin Seitz was the William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of the History of Art at the University of Virginia, 1970-1974.

From the description of William Chapin Seitz papers [manuscript], 1924, 1952-1987. (University of Virginia). WorldCat record id: 647926609

Dates: birth, 1914; death, 1974. Curator, Painting and Sculpture Exhibitions, 1960-1965.

From the description of Papers, ca. 1938-1961, (bulk 1958-1961). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122343738

William Chapin Seitz (1914-1974) was an art historian and painter from Charlottesville, Va., who taught at the University of Virginia.

From the description of William Chapin Seitz papers, circa 1930-1995. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 710018270

William Chapin Seitz (1914-1974) was an art historian and scholar, painter, educator, and museum curator who worked primarily in New York and Virginia. He completed the first dissertation on Abstract Expressionism while a student at Princeton University in 1955.

Born in 1914 in Buffalo, New York, William Chapin Seitz studied at the Albright Art School at the University of Buffalo and the Art Institute of Buffalo. Seitz met artist Irma J. Siegelman, whom he married in 1938. Due to the Depression, he left school and worked with the Federal Arts Project in New York City in the 1930s and worked as an aircraft fuel cell deigner for the Hewitt Rubber Company during World War II. Returning to the University of Buffalo after the war, Seitz completed his undergraduate degree and remained by accepting a teaching job.

Although he saw success as a painter and exhibited in one-man shows, Seitz focused his career in academia and enrolled at Princeton University for a graduate degree in Art History. Princeton faculty held divided views on Seitz's desire to write a dissertation on the Abstract Expressionist movement and debated the subject for over a year. Seitz's dissertation topic was eventually approved and in addition to writing the first dissertation on Abstract Expressionism, Seitz received the first PhD in Modern Art from Princeton. Seitz remained at Princeton as an assistant professor and advised students such as Frank Stella.

In 1960, he accepted a job as a curator at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. At MOMA, Seitz curated The Art of Assemblage (1961), The Responsive Eye (1965), and an exhibition on Monet (1960). Other MOMA exhibitions focused on artists Mark Tobey, Arshile Gorky, and Hans Hofmann. Additionally, he served as director of the Rose Art Museum of Brandeis University from 1965-1970. During that time, Seitz organized the United States exhibition at the Ninth Biennial in Sao Paulo (1967) and the Seventh Biennial of Canadian Painting (1968). In 1971, Seitz returned to teaching at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia and was the Visiting Kress Professor at the National Gallery of Art from 1972-1973.

In addition to his successes in painting, education, and the curatorial field, Seitz was an accomplished writer. He published many articles, essays, and books on art and artists including Art in the Age of Aquarius, on which he worked until his death.

William Seitz died of cancer in 1974.

From the guide to the William Chapin Seitz papers, circa 1930-1995, (Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf William Chapin Seitz papers, circa 1930-1995 Archives of American Art
referencedIn Seitz, William, 1914-1974 : [miscellaneous ephemeral material]. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
referencedIn Pernas, Frances, 1916-. Oral history, 1994. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Seitz, William Chapin. William Chapin Seitz papers, 1934-1995. Archives of American Art
creatorOf Seitz, William Chapin. William Chapin Seitz papers, circa 1930-1995. Archives of American Art
referencedIn Stella, Frank. Frank Stella interview, 1969. Archives of American Art
creatorOf Dahl, Arthur L., 1942-. Arthur L. and Joyce Lyon Dahl papers, 1926-1988. Archives of American Art
creatorOf Seitz, William Chapin. Marcel Duchamp interview, 1962. Museum of Modern Art (MOMA)
creatorOf Seitz, William Chapin, 1914-1974. Artist file. Brooklyn Museum Libraries & Archives
referencedIn Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Office of the Director. Lee H. B. Malone correspondence and miscellaneous subjects, 1949-1960. Hirsch Library Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
creatorOf Seitz, William Chapin. Papers, ca. 1938-1961, (bulk 1958-1961). Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Seitz, William Chapin. William Chapin Seitz papers [manuscript], 1924, 1952-1987. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Selz, Peter Howard, 1919-. Oral history, 1994. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
referencedIn Kashdin, Gladys Shafran, 1921-. Gladys Kashdin papers, [ca. 1948-1974]. Archives of American Art
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Ashton, Dore person
associatedWith Ashton, Dore. person
associatedWith Banks-Woodson, Ellen person
associatedWith Banks-Woodson, Ellen. person
associatedWith Barr, Alfred Hamilton, 1902- person
associatedWith Baziotes, William, 1912-1963. person
associatedWith Cézanne, Paul, 1839-1906. person
associatedWith Conner, Bruce person
associatedWith Conner, Bruce. person
associatedWith Dahl, Arthur L., 1942- person
associatedWith D'Harnoncourt, Rene, 1901-1968. person
associatedWith Di Meo, Judith, person
associatedWith Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968. person
associatedWith Elliott, Philip Clarkson, 1903-1985. person
associatedWith Gorky, Arshile, 1904-1948. person
associatedWith Gottlieb, Adolph, 1903-1974. person
associatedWith Kashdin, Gladys Shafran, 1921- person
associatedWith Krebs, Rockne, 1938- person
associatedWith Millard, Charles W., person
associatedWith Monet, Claude, 1840-1926. person
associatedWith Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Office of the Director. corporateBody
associatedWith Parish, Leonard J. A., person
associatedWith Pernas, Frances, 1916- person
associatedWith Rosati, James, 1912- person
associatedWith Segal, George, 1924-2000. person
associatedWith Seitz, Irma person
associatedWith Seitz, Irma. person
associatedWith Selz, Peter Howard, 1919- person
associatedWith Sorensen, Henry, person
associatedWith Stella, Frank. person
associatedWith University of Virginia corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Virginia
Virginia--Charlottesville
Subject
Educators
Art--Study and teaching
Collage
Painters--Virginia--Charlottesville
Assemblage (Art)
Impressionism (Art)
Educators--Virginia
Abstract Expressionism
Art historians
Art historians--Virginia--Charlottesville
Painters
Post-impressionism (Art)
Art, Modern--20th century
Occupation
Function

Person

Birth 1914-06-19

Death 1974-10-26

Americans

English

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