Clyfford Still the Father in His Voice
by Kristin Kirsch Feldkamp
Clyfford Still was intense, dedicated, and driven by motives unsullied by the desire for commercial success. He had a reputation for being prickly and was unwavering when upholding the integrity of his work. But he had a softer side that didn’t inspire the same amount of press. He was a supportive and loving father to two daughters, Diane and Sandra, and the Clyfford Still Museum is fortunate to have countless treasures in the Clyfford Still Archives that give us a glimpse into his relationship with them. For Father’s Day this year we’re highlighting that special father/daughter relationship with audio clips, photos, and memorabilia. Enjoy!
Excerpts from a 1974 conversation between Still and his younger daughter Sandra. Still and Sandra talk in the car while driving. The topic is primarily encouragement to Sandra and a discussion of artists making work on their own terms and for a higher end goal than money, things, or connections.
In this 1958 black and white portrait, Diane, Still, and Sandra squat in the parking lot at the artist’s West 23rd Street studio in New York City. Photo: Patricia Still, courtesy the Clyfford Still Archives.
In this 1940 black and white portrait, Clyfford Still holds his nine-month-old daughter, Diane, against his chest. Both figures smile widely but Still looks down at his daughter as she looks toward the camera and waves her left hand. Photo: Unknown photographer, courtesy the Clyfford Still Archives.
Father’s Day card from Sandra, date unknown. Sandra, a photographer, hand drew the camera on the card as an extra special touch.