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Cranbrook Academy of Art Women's Committee

 Collection
Identifier: 1991-01

Collection Scope

The Women's Committee Records reflect mainly their fundraising activities for the Academy. They include historical information about the founding of the committee; administrative materials relating to event and program planning, and fundraising initiatives; and correspondence related to their participation within and outside of the Cranbrook community including letters to former United Kingdom Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and former Chairman, CEO, and President of the Chrysler Corporation Lee Iacocca. Also included are publications and marketing materials relating to events and programs hosted by the committee including house and museum tours, exhibits, lectures, symposiums, ceremonies, and other formal gatherings such as the annual Arts Ball, including the Guy Fawkes Ball. A significant part of the collection are several scrapbooks and photo albums documenting the committee’s activities throughout the years.

SERIES I: Administrative (1966-2002) includes historical information about the committee; correspondence including letters to former United Kingdom Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and former Chairman, CEO, and President of the Chrysler Corporation Lee Iacocca; meeting materials; financial data; reports; and files specific to committee chairs Barbara Czamanske, Susan Lanciault, Ginger Scott, Gilly Von Drehle, and Marcia Wiltshire. The series also includes membership and volunteer information.

SERIES II: Events and Programs (1966-ca. 2004) includes various documentation relating to field trips, the Arts Ball, the Annual Membership Luncheon, the Annual Membership Tea, the Art & Antique Auction, Brolly Day Swarry, the Board of Governors Dinner, the Challenge Fund Drive, the Guy Fawkes Ball, CAA president Roy Slade’s 10-year anniversary, and other committee activities.

SERIES III: Publications (1966-2002) includes catalogs, membership directories, and newspaper clippings.

SERIES IV: Photographs, Scrapbooks, & Realia (1931-2006) includes photographs; proofs; negatives; and slides pertaining to numerous committee activities including Creative Patronage, the Cranbrook Board of Governors Awards Dinner, the annual Guy Fawkes Ball, and the Serious Moonlight Patron Party. Scrapbooks document the annual Guy Fawkes Ball and the 13th Anniversary Tea, focusing on the committee's first 21 years in operation. Realia includes a gavel most likely used during committee meetings.

Dates

  • 1966 - 2006

Access

Access to the collection is unrestricted.

Use

Permission to use collection materials must be requested in writing.

History

The Cranbrook Academy of Arts Women’s Committee was founded on February 11, 1966 as the social arm of the Friends of the Academy (the Museum’s new membership program). The committee’s purpose was to promote and undertake activities and projects that would further the welfare of the Academy and the Museum. In the first years, this primarily meant hosting social activities sponsored by the Museum, in order to raise local and national awareness of the Academy as a whole. The committee’s first event was sponsorship (decorations and hors d’oeuvres) of a reception in honor of Zoltan Sepeshy, retiring Academy President, and included a Museum exhibition preview of his paintings. They would hold similar events for subsequent presidents Glen Paulsen (1966-1971), Wallace Mitchell (1970-1977), and Roy Slade (1977-1994).

Officers included a Chairman, Vice Chairman, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, Recording Secretary, and Corresponding Secretary, forming the Executive Committee or Board. First Chair of the Committee was Academy Board of Trustee, Mary Love Russell, and charter members included Carol Lawson Booth, Helen Keyes, and Margot Synder, among others. Business was conducted through meetings of the Board and general membership meetings, including the Annual Luncheon and New Member’s Tea, which took place at regular intervals throughout each year.

The Committee activities quickly became an integral part of fundraising efforts to primarily support students and academic programming, through student scholarships, subsidization of the visiting artists programs, and sponsorship of visiting lecturers. Other projects over the years have included refurbishing the student lounges, purchasing books for the Academy Library, purchasing studio equipment, and organizing Challenge Fund Drives for significant initiatives like the Student Forum Gallery in the New Studios Building. The group’s major annual fundraiser for the Academy was the Arts Ball, instituted in its first year. The gala event would be a tradition carried throughout its thirty-six-year existence, with various themes and titles, rebranding as the Guy Fawkes Ball in 1977. Other fundraising events throughout the years have included the Serious Moonlight Patron Party, Spring Arts Fair, Brolly Day (a reimagining of the annual student open house and auction instituted during President Slade’s tenure), an Arts & Antique Auction, and a Clifford West film festival.

Aside from hosting and planning refreshments for exhibit openings and raising funds, committee members also volunteered at the museum shop and reception desk, held student hospitality events like the student dinner, assisted students with finding part-time work or housing during holidays, and sponsored panel discussions and lectures for Museum members. Beginning in the 1970s, the Women’s Committee would also plan and host visits to other museums, artist’s studios, private art collections, and art galleries as part of the Museum membership program.

At one time the Women’s Committee boasted a membership roster of over 450, and through its use of creative fundraising endeavors, secured hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Academy. In an effort to be more inclusive and responsive to the Academy's and Museum's strategic visions, the committee reorganized as the Cranbrook Academy of Art/Cranbrook Art Museum Member's Council in 2002, reporting to the CAA/CAM Board of Governors.

Committee Chairs: Mrs. George Russell, 1966-1967 Pipsan Saarinen Swanson, 1967-1968 Marion Mitchell, 1968-1971 Mrs. Richard Strickland, 1971-1972 Mrs. Donald E. Young, 1972-1975 Tay Barclay, 1975-1977 Barbara Hogan, 1977-1979 Jean Schuler, 1979-1981 Mrs. George Zonars, 1981-1983 Marusha Judy, 1983-1985 Mrs. Ramon von Drehle, 1985-1987 mrs. Roger Robinson, 1987-1988 Mrs. Eric A. Wilshire, 1988-1990 Ginger Scott, 1990-1992 Phoebe Goldstein, 1992-1994 Susan Lanciault, 1994-1996 Barbara Czamanske, 1996-1998 Joanna Boeckl, 1998-2000 Karmen Santourian, 2000-2001

Committee Chairs

1966-1967
Mrs. George Russell
1967-1968
Pipsan Saarinen Swanson
1968-1971
Marion Mitchell
1971-1972
Mrs. Richard Strickland
1972-1975
Mrs. Donald E. Young
1975-1977
Tay Barclay
1977-1979
Barbara Hogan
1979-1981
Jean Schuler
1981-1983
Mrs. George Zonars
1983-1985
Marusha Judy
1985-1987
Mrs. Ramon von Drehle
1987-1988
Mrs. Roger Robinson
1988-1990
Mrs. Eric A. Wilshire
1990-1992
Ginger Scott
1992-1994
Phoebe Goldstein
1994-1996
Susan Lanciault
1996-1998
Barbara Czamanske
1998-2000
Joanna Boeckl
2000-2001
Karmen Santouria

Extent

7.5 Linear Feet (8 MS, 2 SB, 1 OS)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

The Cranbrook Academy of Arts Women’s Committee was founded on February 11, 1966 as the social arm of the Friends of the Academy (the Museum’s new membership program). The committee’s purpose was to promote and undertake activities and projects that would further the welfare of the Academy and the Museum. Throughout nearly forty years the committee hosted numerous events, programs, and fundraising projects until disbanded in 2002. The bulk of the collection reflects primarly the Women's Committee's fundraising activities for the Academy, including the annual Arts Ball, known in later years as the Guy Fawkes Ball. It also includes historical information about the founding of the committee; administrative materials, publications, marketing materials relating to event and program planning, and fundraising records; correspondence related to participation within and outside of the Cranbrook community; and scrapbooks and photographs covering the committee’s activities.

Arrangement

The collection is divided into six series based on subject or material format:

SERIES I: Administrative (Box 1-3)

SERIES II: Events and Programs (Box 4-6)

SERIES III: Publications (Boxes 6-8)

SERIES IV: Photographs, Scrapbooks, & Realia (Box 9-12)

Acquisition

The bulk of the collection was transferred from the Cranbrook Academy of Art Administration Offices in 2008. Some newsletters and directories were donated by Phoebe Goldstein in 1990. Scrapbooks were donated by Susan Lundine in 2008.

Related Materials

Cranbrook Academy of Art Administration Records (1981-09) Cranbrook Academy of Art President's Office: Slade (Roy) Records (1995-09) Cranbrook-Kingswood Dance Group Photograph Collection (1996-14)

Transfers

A VHS tape from the 1994 Guy Fawkes Ball, and CDs relating to the 2003 Serious Moonlight Patron Party were transferred to the Cranbrook Film and Video Recording Collection (1990-35).

A Kingswood School Green Lobby tile was transferred to the Center Cultural Properties Department.

Processing History

Initial processing by Nichole Manlove, 2020. Final processing by Deborah Rice, 2020.
Title
Guide to the Cranbrook Academy of Art Women's Committee
Status
In Progress
Author
Original finding aid written by Nichole L. Manlove. Revised and edited by Deborah Rice.
Date
2020
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Edition statement
Resource record created by Nichole L. Manlove. Inventory and Agents/Subjects by Laura MacNewman.

Revision Statements

  • 2021-03-24: Notes fields revised and history note and abstract rewritten by Deborah Rice.

Repository Details

Part of the Cranbrook Archives, Cranbrook Center for Collections and Research Repository

Contact:
39221 Woodward Ave.
P.O. Box 801
Bloomfield Hills MI 48303 US