|Rare Book & Manuscript Library|
At a Glance
The collection is comprised mainly of black and white professional photographs of masks, figures, weapons, utensils, musical instruments, and other objects from Africa and Oceania. There is also a smaller amount of Northwest American Indian art. The objects were photographed individually or in small groups against a plain background. The photos are in their original order, organized by region and then by specific location, ethnic or cultural group, and/or type of artifact. A few photos have individual labels, but most are labeled only with a handwritten number on the backing paper. There is no corresponding guide to the numbering system. Wingert was an avid photographer and the photos were likely taken by him, but are not signed. The collection also contains articles and book drafts by Wingert, copies of published articles and books by Wingert and others, original pen and ink illustrations of objects, additional photographs and negatives that do not seem to be part of the photo file, and small amounts of correspondence and other documents.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
Material is unprocessed. Reviewed in 2019, can be made available without further intervention.
The following boxes are located off-site: 1-18. You will need to request this material from the Rare Book and Manuscript Library at least two business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.
This collection has no restrictions.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Paul Wingert Papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Collection-level record describing unprocessed material made public in summer 2018 as part of the Hidden Collections initiative.
2018-09-07 File created.
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
Biographical / Historical
Paul S. Wingert was professor of art history at Columbia University from 1936 to 1966. He studied the art of African, Oceanic, and American Indian cultures--then considered "primitive art"—and argued for the value of this artwork within the fields of history and cultural anthropology. Wingert created and taught the first classes on primitive art at Columbia.
Wingert's early research was in the art of the North American Indians. Later, he worked on the art of the peoples of Oceania; He aided Rene d'Harnoncourt of the Museum of Modern Art and Dr. Ralph Linton, professor of anthropology at Columbia, in organizing the "Art of the South Seas" exhibition at the museum.
Paul Wingert was born in Waynesboro, Pennsylvania. He received his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees from Columbia University and began teaching at Columbia in 1932. He then began a postgraduate program in France, intending to study French Renaissance art, but the work was disrupted by the onset of World War II. Always interest in anthropology, Wingert began parallel studies in Columbia's anthropology and art history departments and focused on primitive art. His first work was on the art of North American Indians and he later studied the peoples of Africa and Oceania. In 1946, Wingert worked with Rene d'Harnoncourt of the Museum of Modern Art and Dr. Ralph Linton, professor of anthropology at Columbia, to create the "Art of the South Seas" exhibition at the museum. Wingert also created first courses in primitive art at Columbia. Wingert's publications include "Outline Guide to the Art of the South Pacific" (1946), "History of World Art." (co-author with Edward M, Upjohn and Jane Gaston Mahler, 1949; "Coast Salish Painting" (1949); "The Sculpture of Negro Africa" (1950), "The Art of the South Pacific Islands (1953); and "Primitive Art: Its Traditions and Styles" (1962). Paul Wingert retired in 1966. He died at the age of 74 in December, 1974.
That year Dr. Wingert also published "Coast Salish Painting." Later books included "The Sculpture of Negro Africa" (1950)"The Art of the South Pacific Islands (1953) and "Primitive Art: Its Traditions and Styles" (1962). He retired in 1966.