Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979

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Writer, critic; New Canaan, Connecticut. Died 1979.

From the description of James Thrall Soby interview, 1970 July 7. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 220190225

Author, art critic, editor, collector, patron, connoisseur, and MoMA director and trustee.

From the description of James Thrall Soby papers, 1930-1979. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122484551

James Thrall Soby (1906-1979) was a writer and critic from New Canaan, Conn.

From the description of Oral history interview with James Thrall Soby, 1970 July 7 [sound recording]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 495596726

American art critic, curator, collector, director and trustee of the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

From the description of James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975 (bulk 1935-1955). (Getty Research Institute). WorldCat record id: 83538474

Biographical/Historical Note

  • 1906: Born December 14 in Hartford, Conn. Son of Charles (in tobacco business) and Anna (Hazlewood) Soby
  • 1923: Educated at Kingswood School
  • 1924: Taft School
  • 1924 - 26 : Attended Williams College
  • 1925: Buys a reproduction of a Maxfield Parrish print
  • 1929: Bought a third interest in Edwin Valentine Mitchell's bookshop in Hartford, Conn.
  • 1931: Worked at Wadsworth Athenaeum
  • 1942: Director of painting and sculpture and member of board of trustees, Museum of Modern Art, New York
  • 1943 - 45 : Assistant director, MoMA
  • 1946 - 68 : Chairman of department of painting, MoMA
  • 1946 - 57 : Author of monthly column of art criticism in Saturday Review of Literature
  • 1950 - 51 : Editor of Magazine of Art, chairman of editorial board, 1951-52.
  • 1952: Married third wife Melissa Wadley (Soby had two previous wives, Mimi and Mary Eleanor [aka Nelly]); children: Peter Allyn
  • 1962: Awarded honorary L.H.D. from Williams College
  • 1968: Vice-president of MoMA
  • 1979: Died January 29 in Norwalk, Conn.

From the guide to the James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975, 1935-1955, (Getty Research Institute)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Jeanneret, Marie-Louise. Letter : Geneva, to James Thrall Soby, New Canaan, 1974 April 12. Getty Research Library
referencedIn Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.). James Thrall Soby bequest. 1979: Archives pamphlet file : miscellaneous uncataloged material. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Hitchcock, Henry Russell, 1903-. Henry-Russell Hitchcock papers, 1919-1987. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
creatorOf Man Ray, 1890-1976. Man Ray letters and album, 1922-1976. Getty Research Library
creatorOf Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969. Ben Shahn papers, 1879-1990 (bulk 1933-1970). Smithsonian Archives of American Art
creatorOf Trovato, Joseph S., 1912-1983. Joseph S. Trovato papers, [ca. 1945-1980]. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
referencedIn Marguerite Yourcenar papers, 1920-1986. Houghton Library.
referencedIn John Mason Brown papers, 1922-1967. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Archives pamphlet file : Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979 : miscellaneous uncataloged material. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975 (bulk 1935-1955). Getty Research Library
referencedIn Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.). Early museum history: administrative records, 1930s-1950s. Museum of Modern Art (MOMA)
referencedIn Ribicoff, Belle Krasne, 1924-. Belle Krasne Ribicoff papers, 1942-circa 2010, bulk 1945-2004. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
referencedIn Marguerite Yourcenar additional papers, 1842-1996. Houghton Library.
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. 27 Lewis Street. Connecticut Historical Society
referencedIn Belle Krasne Ribicoff papers, 1942-circa 2010, bulk 1945-2004 Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution
referencedIn Ben Shahn papers, 1879-1990, bulk 1933-1970 Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. James Thrall Soby papers, 1930-1979. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
referencedIn Henry-Russell Hitchcock papers, 1919-1987 Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution
creatorOf Stamos, Theodoros, 1922-1997. Theodoros Stamos papers, 1922-2007. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
creatorOf Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.). Correspondence with Margaret Naumburg, 1942-1943. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965. Papers, 1903-2005. Harvard University Art Museum
referencedIn Mazo, Sara, 1911-. Oral history, 1993. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Miró, Joan, 1893-1983. Letters, 1935-1958. J. Paul Getty Center, Arts Archives
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979,. Oral history interview with James Thrall Soby, 1970 July 7 [sound recording]. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
creatorOf Barr, Alfred Hamilton, 1902-. Alfred Hamilton Barr papers, [ca. 1915-1983]. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
creatorOf James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975, 1935-1955 Getty Research Institute
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. Correspondence from Edward F. Fry, 1968. University of Pennsylvania Library
referencedIn Grace Hartigan Papers, 1942-2006 Special Collections Research Center, Syracuse University Libraries
creatorOf Huelsenbeck, Richard, 1892-1974. Letters received and papers relating to Jean Arp, 1935-1964. J. Paul Getty Center, Arts Archives
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. James Thrall Soby interview, 1970 July 7. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith Arp, Jean, 1887-1966 person
associatedWith Bacon, Francis, 1909-1992 person
associatedWith Balthus, 1908-2001 person
associatedWith Barr, Alfred Hamilton, 1902- person
associatedWith Berman, Eugene, 1899- person
associatedWith Berman, Eugene, 1899-1972. person
associatedWith Berman, Leonid, 1896-1976. person
associatedWith Blume, Peter, 1906-1992. person
correspondedWith Brown, John Mason, 1900-1969 person
associatedWith Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976. person
associatedWith Cummings, Paul, person
associatedWith Dalí, Salvador, 1904-1989. person
associatedWith De Chirico, Giorgio, 1888-1978 person
associatedWith Edwin Valentine Mitchell, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Gris, Juan, 1887-1927 person
associatedWith Hartigan, Grace. person
associatedWith Hitchcock, Henry Russell, 1903- person
associatedWith Huelsenbeck, Richard, 1892-1974. person
associatedWith Jeanneret, Marie-Louise. person
associatedWith Krasne Ribicoff, Belle person
associatedWith Leonid, 1896-1976 person
associatedWith Levy, Julien person
associatedWith Levy, Julien. person
associatedWith Magritte, René, 1898-1967. person
associatedWith Magritte, René, 1989-1967 person
associatedWith Man Ray, 1890-1976. person
associatedWith Mazo, Sara, 1911- person
associatedWith Miró, Joan, 1893-1983 person
associatedWith Mitchell, Edwin Valentine, 1890-1960. person
associatedWith Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
associatedWith Ribicoff, Belle Krasne, 1924- person
associatedWith Rivers, Larry, 1925- person
associatedWith Rivers, Larry, 1925-2002. person
associatedWith Rouault, Georges, 1871-1958. person
associatedWith Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965. person
associatedWith Sage, Kay person
associatedWith Sage, Kay. person
associatedWith Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969 person
associatedWith Smith, Cedric Ellsworth. person
associatedWith Stamos, Theodoros, 1922-1997. person
associatedWith Tanguy, Yves, 1900-1955. person
associatedWith Tchelitchew, Pavel, 1898-1957. person
associatedWith Trovato, Joseph S., 1912-1983. person
correspondedWith Yourcenar, Marguerite. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
United States
Connecticut--New Canaan
Connecticut--New Canaan
Connecticut--Hartford
New York (State)--New York
Subject
Art critics--Archives
Publishers and Publishing
Art critics--United States
Art historians as collectors--United States
Art--Collectors and collecting--United States
Art, Modern--20th century
Art critics--Interviews
Art, American
Art critics
Art, Modern--20th century--Sources
Art museum directors
Art patrons
Art historians as collectors
Art patrons--United States
Booksellers and bookselling
Art--Collectors and collecting
Art museum directors, United States
Art museums--History--Sources
Art museum directors--Archives
Authors--Archives
Neoromanticism (Art movement)
Occupation
Function

Person

Birth 1906-12-14

Death 1979-01-29

Male

Americans

English

Information

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