Marie Seton, recipients: Ronald Moody, Helene Moody

Letter from Marie Seton to Ronald and Helene Moody, addressed from Chicago

9 September 1944

Page 1

Created by
Marie Seton 1910–1985
Recipients
Ronald Moody 1900–1984 Helene Moody 1902–1978
Date
9 September 1944
Show details
Ronald Moody, ‘Page 1’ 9 September 1944
Created by
Marie Seton 1910–1985
Recipient s
Ronald Moody 1900–1984
Helene Moody 1902–1978
Title
Letter from Marie Seton to Ronald and Helene Moody, addressed from Chicago
Date
9 September 1944
Format
Document - correspondence
Collection
Tate Archive
Acquisition
Presented to Tate Archive by Cynthia Moody, the sculptor's niece, 1995.
Reference
TGA 956/1/2/58/4

Description

This letter includes descriptions of various aspects of Marie Seton's life in America including her friend, Marjorie Weston Pilley and her [Pilley's] feelings about Boston and Seton's own views on the Chicago climate. Seton also outlines the rival attitudes of Chicago newspapers (the Chicago Tribune and Sun) and discusses the forthcoming [1944 presidential] election. She also refers to Gerald L K Smith [the founder of the America First Party] and his attempts to nominate John W Bricker for president [Bricker was one of the Republican candidates for the presidency].

In addition, Seton describes the persecution of black people and Jews in America and provides details of a case taken on by Donald [Donald Hesson, Marie Seton's then husband] involving arson and the subsequent death of two black children. Seton discusses her views of the advances in racial equality made possible by war and Donald's involvement in the Civil Rights movement. She also describes Donald's early attitudes to black and Jewish people, influenced by his childhood in Kentucky, and his later enlightenment with regards to race, accompanied by a great amount of inner turmoil. She informs Moody that Chicago has so far avoided race riots.

In the remainder of the letter, Seton brings up the possibility of a visit to England and discusses perceived changes in herself. She also refers to Moody's work, specifically the work held by the Harmon Foundation and his work in Paris. She informs Moody of her efforts to persuade the Art Institute to pick up his work and reflects on her feelings about her war experiences. She also raises the issue of Elsie Cohen's problems and her failure to provide Marie with information [Elsie Cohen was the director of the Academy Cinema]. Seton suggests that the Moodys ask Olwen Vaughan [the owner of 'Le Petit Club Francais', a haunt of the Free French and documentary film makers] if he would show them 'Time in the Sun' [her reconstruction of Sergei Eisenstein's projected epic, ¡Que viva México!]. There is a brief reference to Alberto Cavalcanti, the film director.

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