THOMPSON, MILDRED, 1935-2003.
Mildred Thompson papers, 1949-2009

Emory University

Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library

Atlanta, GA 30322

404-727-6887

rose.library@emory.edu

Permanent link: http://pid.emory.edu/ark:/25593/bmk4w


Descriptive Summary

Creator: Thompson, Mildred, 1935-2003.
Title: Mildred Thompson papers, 1949-2009
Call Number:Manuscript Collection No. 1199
Extent: 9 linear ft. (20 boxes), 32 oversized papers (OP), 9 bound volumes (BV), 1 oversized bound volume (OBV), A/V Masters: 1 linear ft. (1 box) and 9.8 MB of born digital materials.
Abstract:Papers of African American artist Mildred Thompson, including correspondence, manuscripts, artwork, photographs, printed material and a small amount of born digital material.
Language:Materials predominantly in English with a small amount of material in German.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

Special restrictions apply:

Researchers must contact the Rose Library in advance for access to some sound recordings in this collection.

Series 8: Access to born digital materials is only available in the Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library (the Rose Library). Use of the original digital media is restricted.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.

Researchers are not permitted to copy or download any of the digital files from the computer workstation.

Source

Purchase, 2011.

Citation

[after identification of item(s)], Mildred Thompson papers, Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library, Emory University.

Processing

Rebecca Sherman, 2013.

Born digital materials processed by Erika Farr, June 2015. The born digital materials currently available to researchers were transferred from 7 3.5" floppy disks. Bitstream images of this media were captured and files extracted from the images. For more information, see the processing note in the description of Series 8, Born digital materials.


Collection Description

Biographical Note

Mildred Jean Thompson (1936-2003), African American painter, sculptor, printmaker, musician, and photographer, was born in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1936. Thompson began her formal training as an artist at Howard University in 1953, under the guidance of James A. Porter. After graduating, she traveled to Germany where she studied at the Hochschule für bildende Künste Hamburg. In 1961 Thompson briefly returned to the United States. However, after encountering racism while trying to exhibit her art, Thompson expatriated to Düren, Germany. She returned to the United States once again in 1974, assuming a position as artist-in-residence in Tampa, Florida. She worked for a few years in Washington, D.C., and Paris before finally settling in Atlanta, Georgia, with her partner, Donna Jackson.

While Thompson is perhaps best known as an abstract painter, her oeuvre also includes wooden sculptures, drawings, lithographs, and photographs. She was also involved in a variety of other creative pursuits. Thompson was a musician/songwriter who wrote original music and performed in a blues band, Wedo Blues, with Donna Jackson. She also wrote poetry and prose, and served as a contributing editor at Art Papers, an Atlanta-based art magazine, from 1987 through the early 2000s. Throughout her career, Thompson taught drawing and art courses at numerous institutions in the United States and Germany, including Dusseldorfer Schule Kollegium in Düren, Spelman College in Atlanta, and The Atlanta College of Art.

Mildred Jean Thompson (1936-2003), African American painter, sculptor, printmaker, musician, and photographer, was born in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1936. Thompson began her formal training as an artist at Howard University in 1953, under the guidance of James A. Porter. After graduating, she traveled to Germany where she studied at the Hochschule für bildende Künste Hamburg. In 1961 Thompson briefly returned to the United States. However, after encountering racism while trying to exhibit her art, Thompson expatriated to Düren, Germany. She returned to the United States once again in 1974, assuming a position as artist-in-residence in Tampa, Florida. She worked for a few years in Washington, D.C., and Paris before finally settling in Atlanta, Georgia, with her partner, Donna Jackson.

While Thompson is perhaps best known as an abstract painter, her oeuvre also includes wooden sculptures, drawings, lithographs, and photographs. She was also involved in a variety of other creative pursuits. Thompson was a musician/songwriter who wrote original music and performed in a blues band, Wedo Blues, with Donna Jackson. She also wrote poetry and prose, and served as a contributing editor at Art Papers, an Atlanta-based art magazine, from 1987 through the early 2000s. Throughout her career, Thompson taught drawing and art courses at numerous institutions in the United States and Germany, including Dusseldorfer Schule Kollegium in Düren, Spelman College in Atlanta, and The Atlanta College of Art.

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of the papers of Mildred Thompson from 1949-2009 and includes correspondence and personal papers; artwork; writings; subject and teaching files; printed material; photographs; audiovisual material; and born digital materials. The materials document Thompson's work as an artist, musician, photographer, writer, and teacher.

Correspondence is both professional and personal in nature, and includes numerous letters from Thompson's friend and fellow artist Gillian Lewis; personal papers include notebooks, a scrapbook, and other materials. Artwork includes numerous hand-made books composed of original photographs by Thompson, as well as three other original works of art. Writings consist of poetry and prose, including several children's books with illustrations by Thompson and articles written for Art Papers, as well as a few pages of sheet music. Subject files primarily relate to Thompson's projects and exhibitions, while teaching files document her teaching career at various institutions, including Spelman College in Atlanta and The Atlanta College of Art. The bulk of the printed material consists of articles by Thompson and materials pertaining to Thompson, primarily about her exhibitions. Photographs include those taken by Thompson, including portraits and a few albums, as well as photographs of her and a small number of other photographs. Audiovisual material consists primarily of sound recordings of Thompson's original keyboard compositions. There are also sound recordings of Thompson's blues band, Wedo Blues, and a small number of recordings of other events. Video recordings include events featuring Thompson, interviews with her, and videos of Wedo Blues performances. Born digital materials date from 1993 to 2000, and include email correspondence and documents about projects, exhibits and creative activities.

Arrangement Note

Organized into eight series: (1) Correspondence and personal papers, (2) Artwork, (3) Writings, (4) Subject and teaching files, (5) Printed material, (6) Photographs, (7) Audiovisual material, and (8) Born digital materials.


Selected Search Terms

Personal Names

Corporate Names

Topical Terms

Form/Genre Terms


Description of Series

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