NMHM Makes New Gustave Baumann Collections Available to Researchers

New Mexico History Museum (NMHM) has become a new resource about the life and work of internationally acclaimed artist and printer Gustave Baumann for art collectors and students of Southwestern history. Born in Germany, Baumann eventually settled in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1918, after periods in Chicago and Indiana. He died in 1971. 

In 2021, the Ann Baumann Trust donated a substantial collection of Gustave Baumann’s documents and photographs to NMHM. As part of its management of this collection, NMHM has developed finding aids that describe the organization and content of the collection and made them available on the New Mexico Archives Online website. Researchers who wish to see individual items can do so at the museum by appointment.  

“These materials provide detailed insights into Gustave Baumann’s personal relationships and business practices. They are an important resource for anyone wanting to better understand Mr. Baumann and his times,” said Billy G. Garrett, executive director of NMHM. 

The newly available papers include Baumann’s correspondence with his wide circle of friends, his annual hand-printed Christmas cards, letters between museum collections throughout the United States, photographs of Santa Fe, and the naturalization certificate he received upon becoming a United States citizen in 1904. Some of the materials were previously featured in In a Modern Rendering: The Color Woodcuts of Gustave Baumann: A Catalogue Raisonné by Gala Chamberlain and Nancy E. Green, published by Rizzoli Electa. In addition to archival materials, the donation included more than 200 of Baumann’s wood printing blocks.  

Processing the collections included organization of the materials and creation of an inventory guide. The work has been spearheaded by Alice Wehling, a contract archivist working with museum staff, and Madisyn Rostro, a project collections assistant who catalogued and photographed the wood print blocks. Funding for this work was provided by the Ann Baumann Trust.  

The finding aids for both the papers and photographs are now available at the New Mexico Archives Online website. Researchers who wish to see the Baumann papers should arrange an appointment with the Fray Angélico Chávez History Library; appointments to view his photographs should be made with the Palace of the Governors Photo Archives. Both the library and photo archives are part of the New Mexico History Museum. The next phase of the project will selectively digitize items from the collections and make them available online. 

Other Baumann-related materials, principally his artwork and marionettes, are included in the collections of the New Mexico Museum of Art. Both the New Mexico History Museum and the New Mexico Museum of Art are divisions within the New Mexico Department of Cultural Resources.  

About the New Mexico History Museum 

The New Mexico History Museum is a statewide educational resource, local landmark, and destination for anyone who wants to understand the diverse experiences of the people of New Mexico, the dynamics that have shaped our state, and the relationships that connect our region with the rest of the world. Located on the historic Santa Fe Plaza, the New Mexico History Museum campus includes the Palace of the Governors, the Pete V. Domenici Building, the Fray Angélico Chávez History Library, and the Palace of the Governors Photo Archives. Learn more at nmhistorymuseum.org.


This press release and all others distributed by the New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs can be found here https://media.newmexicoculture.org/releases.