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Crimilda Pontes Graphic Arts Archive

 Collection
Identifier: 05-exws_pontes
The majority of the Pontes Archive focuses on her career while working for Yale University Press and the Smithsonian Institute where she designed and redesigned banners, logos, posters, and the institution's seal. The archive contains books from Miss Pontes' personal library on book design, art, and calligraphy. The archive also contains examples of much of the books on which she worked as an illustrator or designer. The archive includes production notes and projects, photographs of her associates and New England scenery, and correspondence with other New England calligraphers, typographers, and book artists.

Dates

  • 1951-1991
  • Other: Date acquired: 2000-12-14

Creator

Physical Description

The items in this collection are housed in 18 custom-made archival enclosures (approximately 12 linear feet). It contains correspondences, obituaries, prayer cards, business cards, photographs, newspapers, newspaper clippings, cards, booklets, enrollment cards, diplomas, travel journals, invitations, calligraphy samples, postcards, event notices, travel budgets, magazines, letterheads, bookplates, sheet music, maps, dust jackets, sketches, stationary, books (published and unfinished) and bibliographical files.

Extent

72 other_unmapped (35 Broadsides in addition to the 37 boxes.)

Abstract

Archive of the work of graphic designer Crimilda Pontes, concentrated mostly on the period during which she worked for University of Yale Press and Smithsonian Institute. Contains correspondences, obituaries, prayer cards, business cards, photographs, newspapers, newspaper clippings, cards, booklets, enrollment cards, diplomas, travel journals, invitations, calligraphy samples, postcards, event notices, travel budgets, magazines, letterheads, bookplates, sheet music, maps, dust jackets, sketches, stationary, books (published and unfinished) and bibliographical files.

Biographical / Historical

Crimilda Pontes (1927-2000) was a graphic designer specializing in book covers and dust jackets for commercial book companies. She was also a calligrapher who presented her calligraphic works to world leaders and royalty, including Prince Philip of Britain. Pontes was a student of the renowned calligrapher, designer, and letter carver John Howard Benson whom she met while receiving her BFA in Fine Arts from the Rhode Island School of Design (1948). After graduating from Rhode Island School of Design she worked as Benson's apprentice at the John Stevens Shop in Newport, Rhode Island. From 1951 to 1954 she worked as the Illustrator General at the Naval War College also in Newport and then moved to Buffalo, NY, to become an art instructor at Rosary Hill College until 1957. After receiving her MA in Graphic Arts from Yale University in 1959, she took a job at the Yale University Press designing books and book jackets until 1964. Miss Pontes was a frequent winner in the University Press selections for design and production. She was cited for design excellence both in the United States and abroad. Her last job, which she held for 23 years, was in Washington D.C. where she worked for the Smithsonian Institute. She retired from the Smithsonian in 1988.

Arrangement Note

This collection is made of fifteen 'series' . Each series comprises one or more archival boxes dedicated to a particular facet of Pontes' design work, either a type of work (calligraphy, presswork, dust jackets, etc.) or other categories of like items (items stored in portfolios, work done for the Smithsonian Institute, bibliographic files, etc.)

Series N: Flat Cases and Enclosed Broadsides is stored in the Vault, while the rest of the collection remains in the Second Floor Annex.

Physical Access Requirements

WMU Special Collections. Non-circulating. Contact department for access.

Source of Acquisition

John William Pye Rare Books, Brockton, MA
Method of Acquisition purchase

Physical Description

The items in this collection are housed in 18 custom-made archival enclosures (approximately 12 linear feet). It contains correspondences, obituaries, prayer cards, business cards, photographs, newspapers, newspaper clippings, cards, booklets, enrollment cards, diplomas, travel journals, invitations, calligraphy samples, postcards, event notices, travel budgets, magazines, letterheads, bookplates, sheet music, maps, dust jackets, sketches, stationary, books (published and unfinished) and bibliographical files.
Title
Inventory of the Crimilda Pontes Graphic Arts Archive
Status
completed
Author
Alexandra Weeldreyer
Description rules
dacs
Language of description
English

Revision Statements

  • 2017-04: Two series present in Box 1. Divided Box 1 into two physical boxes, Box 1A and Box 1B, so each series could be in its own box. Same with Boxes 5, 6, and 11.

Repository Details

Part of the Western Michigan University Special Collections Repository

Contact:
Waldo Library, Special Collections
Western Michigan University Libraries
1903 W Michigan Ave.
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5353 US
(269) 387-5221