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Archival description
Fones, Robert
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Rubber stamps

Series comprises 21 rubber stamps designed by Robert Fones and used during his participation in the correspondence art movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Fones, Robert

Personal Correspondence

Series is comprised of correspondence sent to and from Robert Fones over the past 55 years, the bulk of which consists of personal letters and correspondence art received by Robert Fones from 1969 to 1975 from artists and writers from Vancouver, from the San Francisco Bay area, New York, Toronto and southwestern Ontario. It includes correspondence art and zines (consisting of a mixture of collages, manipulated photographs, stamps, letters, drawings, visual poetry, recycled images often mimeographed or photocopied) from artists such as Victor Coleman (aka Mr. Peanut), Michael Morris (aka Marcel Dot), Anna Banana, Dr. and Lady Brute, Michael Binder (aka Cloud), General Idea, Hank Bull, Chicken Bank, Daddaland, and others. It also includes correspondence from poets and writers such as Michael Ondaatje and Christopher Dewdney.

Fones, Robert

Journals

Series is comprised of the journals of Robert Fones. The journals contain records and notations of daily life and art production; reflections on his personal life; and notes on his creative processes and inspirations. Often they include insertions of found images, product labels, pages from instruction manuals, photographs, letters, ephemera and samples of the artist’s poetry and writing. There are numerous connections between these books and the artist’s finished works. While several of the books contain drawings and collages, journal entries are the predominant feature, distinguishing them from the sketchbooks in Series 8. There are four daily diaries in this series. This series also includes one address book, undated.

Fones, Robert

Handmade artist books

Series is comprised of unpublished artist books by Robert Fones created between 1964 and 1972. The bulk of the books are dated 1964 and 1965 while Fones was attending H.B. Beal Secondary School in London, Ontario. Two books, Ticket to Ride and Letters I’ve Known and Loved: the Life and Legend of the Alphabet are incomplete and unbound. Only the book jacket for Norwegian Wood was completed. All books contain original artwork and text.

Fones, Robert

Business Files

Series is comprised of the business and professional files of Robert Fones. It includes grant applications, awards, income tax returns, and documents relating to the sales and exhibition of his work as well as the publication of his writing. Of note is 21 years of correspondence with Carmen Lamanna, Robert Fones’ first Toronto art dealer from 1970 to 1990, and with S.L Simpson Gallery, which subsequently represented Robert Fones. It also includes correspondence and agreements with regard to his art related teaching career.

Fones, Robert

Art production materials and models

Series is comprised of materials and models relating to the production of specific works of art from 1973 to 2011. The production files include stencils and tracings, drawings, sketches, technical measurements and specifications, sample materials, photographs, correspondence, documentation and research notes. This series includes models for Backyards, Owen Jones, Gordon’s Block, Iron Bridge, Counties 1 and Counties 2. It also includes two sets of alphabets: a copper set used in the Niche paintings and Leviathan Letters crafted out of clay, and the Stomachion Puzzle from What the Locals Make. Dates and file titles supplied by the artist unless otherwise indicated.

Fones, Robert

Public art commission files

Series is comprised of the files and production materials specifically related to the public art commissions proposed and/or carried out by Robert Fones between 1991 and 2007. It includes project proposals, production materials such as stencils, technical drawings, colour charts and production specifications, correspondence, research and project notes. There are files for the All Star Game Banners project, Torys, Scribeners, Metro Toronto Convention Centre and the Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care.

Fones, Robert

Project files

Series is comprised of archival materials relating to various curatorial, graphic design and artist book projects that Fones has undertaken during his artistic careers. It includes material towards an artist book on cones that was never completed, source material for Anthropomorphiks, and materials relating to artist books Field Identification and Head Paintings. It also includes research notes, correspondence, and drafts of catalogue essays and speaking notes for his curatorial projects: Russell Spanner: A Spanner in the Works and Greg Curnoe’s Cut-Out: Shaped Collages (1965-1968). It also includes artwork and related materials for several graphic design projects.

Fones, Robert

Sketchbooks and colour-mixing books

Series is comprised of the sketchbooks used and kept by Robert Fones. The volumes primarily contain sketches and drawings, often related to specific artworks, design projects or artist book works. Some of the sketchbooks, as noted in the descriptions, contain finished drawings that the artist has chosen to leave intact within the sketchbooks. The sketchbooks may also contain some diaristic writings, personal reflections and technical notes, thus there is some overlap with the journals especially in earlier volumes. Also included in this series are several colour mixing books used by Robert Fones, which consist of colour mixing formulas for several of his artworks, as noted in the descriptions.

Fones, Robert

Coach house press

Series is comprised of various ephemera, including Can-D-Man postcards, invitations to book launches and other events, samples of letterhead and logos, newsletter, one audio cassette of talking books sampler, a partial publication by David Rosenberg, Excellent Articles in Japan. It also includes invitations to Fones’ book launch for Anthropomorphiks.

Fones, Robert

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