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1974-10-19 Letter to Mr. Messer (Guggenheim Museum Director) from Shirley

October 19, 1974 Letter to Mr. Messer from Shirley

Dear Mr. Messer,

            I have followed your successful career with great interest since meeting you years ago at the Housen’s in Chestnut Hill.  And I am writing to you because on the basis of what I have seen at the Guggenheim I respect your judgment and commitment.

            For a number of years I have been putting together a rather unusual collection of American art the chief focus of which is the Mexican artist Tamayo and the United States artist Rockmore.  Rockmore’s work is probably not familiar to you because for the last twenty years he has been painting in relative obscurity although prodigiously after having been catapulted into celebrity in the 50's.  He is the son of artists Gladys Rockmore Davis and Floyd Davis but he changed his name from Davis to Rockmore, broke with Joe Hirschhorn who had been his friend and patron in New York, and moved to New Orleans.  There now exists an amazing body of work which has been constructed not only with technical mastery but with increasing power to impose images and compositions of great complexity.  It is also work which has not been seen or evaluated by any major figure in the art work in the Eastern part of the country for the past twenty years.

            I am in New York for the Heymifeld wedding this Sunday and hope you might have some time to help me get a perspective on this work.

            Since I expect even the busiest of museum directors must eat I would be truly delighted if you would lunch with me at the Plaza either Tuesday or Wednesday at your convenience. If not I would be glad to meet with you directly at the museum for an hour or less and bring lunch or refreshment with me. 

            I will call you Monday afternoon and I look forward to seeing you again.

                                                            (Shirley Marvin)

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GEFQ Rockmore Films

The Beginning of the Noel Rockmore Project (9 min) 2010 Shirley with Rich & Tee Marvin

Shirley Marvin Rockmore Interview (10 min) 2011 Shirley & Taylor Rose Marvin 

Manny Greer Interview (10 min) 2010 Early 60s Gallery Owner

DAVID LATTIMORE / NOEL ROCKMORE  (52 min) 2013 Putney High School & young married couple friend

Trailer: David Amram - Noel Rockmore

Full Feature David Amram Noel Rockmore (91 min) 2012 World Famous Composer & Musician Friend

LaGrange Rockmore Panel Film - (81 min) 2011 Gallery owner, girlfriend, patrons

The World According to New Orleans (66 min) 2011 Curator Dan Cameron's Marfa Texas Walk Through