Scope and arrangement
The Charles Boultenhouse and Parker Tyler Papers (1927-1994) consist of correspondence; published and unpublished manuscripts and typescripts of each man's writings; photographs; personal files and mementos; subject files; films; sound recordings; art work; and printed material including books, periodicals, catalogs, and brochures. The papers document the men's relationship of almost 30 years; their involvement in and contribution to the arts—predominantly film and film criticism, but also dance, theater, poetry, and art criticism; their social life with friends and colleagues; and, to some extent, the activities of the artistic communities with which they were involved. The bulk of the papers cover the period from 1945 on, after the men met and began living together, and so are, in one sense, the papers of their household, as well as those of each man individually.
The correspondence is mostly to and from Charles Boultenhouse although some letters are addressed to Tyler or to both men as a couple. The works in the papers—art, film, writings, and photographs—were created by Tyler, Boultenhouse, and their friends (whose works Boultenhouse or Tyler were given or collected). The Personal Files include biographical material for both men, some of Tyler's tax returns, clippings, inventories of their library and art works, and medical records. The Subject Files consist of material collected on certain topics and individuals. The Photographs series includes negatives and positive prints of the two men and their friends; reproductions of works of art; dance, theater, and film stills; 36 photographs of a Greek fertility ritual; and a large group of negatives taken by Macario (Tosh) Carillo of his friends. The Art series includes works by Parker Tyler, Pavel Tchelitchew, Leslie Powell, and Dimitri Petrov among others. The Books, Periodicals, Catalogs series includes most of Parker Tyler's published works and periodicals containing Tyler and Boultenhouse's contributions—some with dedications, annotations, and marks of ownership—as well as books from their library, many of which are signed and dedicated by the books' authors. The papers also contain several artifacts, including Parker Tyler's wallet.
The Charles Boultenhouse and Parker Tyler papers are arranged in ten series:
Most of the correspondence is to and from Charles Boultenhouse, or are letters addressing both men as a couple; there is some correspondence which is Parker Tyler's exclusively. Living together for almost thirty years and sharing interests in the arts, Boultenhouse and Tyler shared many of their friends and colleagues in common.
Operating in a relatively small community of artists, the men enjoyed close relationships with many of those working in similar veins or related fields: the correspondence provides insight into the world of experimental and underground film, dance, and literature. Notable correspondents include Stan Brakhage and Jane Brakhage, Marius Bewley, Charles Henri Ford, Willard Maas, Gregory Markopoulos, Marie Menken, Jonas Mekas, Ned Rorem, Donald Sutherland, and Amos Vogel.
The correspondence between Tyler and Boultenhouse (1947-1973) is predominantly from Tyler to Boultenhouse. It also includes some of Boultenhouse's diary entries from 1970.
The Personal Files are an assortment of clippings, printed materials, and lists which to a limited extent document both men's careers, biographies, legal affairs, medical problems, possessions, and finances. This series also includes many invitations to readings and book parties, and typed inventories of the couple's library and art collection.
The Works series consists of manuscripts and typescripts of published and unpublished poetry, fiction, essays, and plays written by Boultenhouse and Tyler, as well as treatments, notes, scripts, and credits for several of Boultenhouse's films. (Tyler's art work and Boultenhouse's film can be found in the “Art & Artifacts”, and “Film” series.) This series also includes some of both men's published writing in the form of clippings and personally printed chapbooks. see also: Books, Periodicals, Catalogs Of special note are the preliminary drafts of Boultenhouse's planned biography of Tyler and the typescript of Tyler's unpublished novel The Clairvoyante & The Crime: A Novel in Prose and Verse.
The Subject Files consist of material, mostly printed, collected on certain topics or people such as Avant Garde Film, Homosexuality, and Andy Warhol. The series also includes invitations and brochures for art, theater, and film openings.
This series comprises negatives and positive prints of friends and family, dance performances and dancers, art, buildings, and children. Other photographs include film stills; theater stills; 36 photos taken by Colonel Thamos Veloudios, sent to Charles Boultenhouse by Gregory Markopoulos, of a Greek fertility ritual called the Chios Festival; and a large group of negatives of photos, some homoerotic, taken by Tosh Carillo (a friend of Boultenhouse's and an actor who appeared in several of Andy Warhol's films) of his friends.
The personal photographs include an album compiled by Boultenhouse which consists mostly of pictures of himself and his friends, including Tyler, from his childhood onward; the other photos are of the two men and their friends at parties or on vacation. Many of the pictures of art, and the film, dance, and theater stills were pictures intended as illustrations in books or articles by either Tyler or Boultenhouse. Other film stills were sent to the men by the filmmakers and include stills from films by Gregory Markopoulos, Robert Beavers, and Donald Richie.
This series consists of two 8mm films by Stan Brakhage; a 16mm film by Charles Boultenhouse of Parker Tyler, Marjie Borisoff, and Norman Borisoff drinking wine on a roof top; and several frames, sent to Tyler and Boultenhouse by the filmmakers as mementos, from films by Charles Henri Ford, Gregory Markopoulos, and Paul Sharits. NOTE: Use of films restricted pending creation of surrogate copies.
Sound recordings include experimental takes and rehearsal from Boultenhouse's film Handwritten;conversations about film between Boultenhouse and Tyler; two talks given by Boultenhouse at a film festival in Colorado in 1982 about his film Dionysiusand the films of the early American avant garde filmmakers; an interview of Stan Brakhage by Parker Tyler; a segment of Brakhage's radio show; and the Greek narration for Gregory Markopoulos's film Serenity.NOTE: Use of sound recordings restricted pending creation of surrogate copies.
This series consists of drawings, prints, collages, and watercolors by Parker Tyler, Pavel Tchelitchew, Leslie Powell, Dimitri Petrov, and Alan Kaprow among others. The artifacts are Parker Tyler's wallet and three dimensional art objects (i.e. collages and assemblages) by Parker Tyler, Edward Owens, and Marius Bewley.
This series consists of material removed from other series because of its size. It includes posters and photographs, as well as the sheet music and lyrics of musical collaborations between Parker Tyler and Ned Rorem and between Stan Brakhage and Ramiro Cortes.
This series is made up of publications written or contributed to by Parker Tyler and Charles Boultenhouse and books and periodicals from their library. Many of the books bear some mark of either man's ownership, their names or other annotations. Several of the books by other writers are signed and/or are dedicated to one or both of the men. Of special note are the privately printed or limited edition chapbooks of poetry, usually signed by the authors with personal messages.