Since its inception, the former Arnold Schoenberg Institute (University of Southern California, Los Angeles) attempted to locate and collect materials relating to Arnold Schönberg from every possible source. Hundreds of individuals and institutions cooperated in this endeavor by contributing material directly, offering material for sale, making facsimiles available, and bequething materials to the Institute. Many materials acquired in such a manner are known as satellite collections in that they relate to the principal archival collection, namely Schönberg's legacy.
What distinguishes a satellite collection from other non-legacy material in the Archive?
Provenance: The importance of an item or a group of items may stem, in part, from the agency which collected and/or provided the material. That is, the value of the group of material is greater than the sum of the individual parts. Another important aspect of provenance is that of verification. It often helps to establish the authenticity of an item if the history of ownership of the physical item is known.
Rarity: The fact that an item may be unique or exist in very few copies contributes to its importance and value thus making it valuable to deal with the item on its own terms rather than attempting to mainstream it into other more common materials.
Monetary Value: Often a significant part of an item's importance is in its monetary value. Extremely valuable materials are more protected against loss or damage in satellite collections because access is more controlled.
Preservation: Occasionally the inherant instability of a physical item demands that it be treated in special ways, such as being in a satellite collection, in order to slow or halt the process of deterioration.
In order to provide access to materials in the Institute’s satellite collections, general descriptions and lists have been made of each distinct collection. A list, descriptions, and an index thereof has been published in the Journal of the Arnold Schoenberg Institute (15/1). A more up-to-date and dynamic version of that list is available here.
All references to Arnold Schönberg the individual are spelled without the umlaut (Schoenberg dropped the umlaut in 1933 when he emigrated to the United States). All other references, whether to Schoenberg in a corporate name or to his relatives, are spelled as established in that context. The Arnold Schoenberg Institute is abbreviated to ASI in the lists of correspondents throughout the article. For the purposes of alphabeticization, ä = ae, ö = oe, ü = ue. Bracketed dates are those provided by the compiler. “No date” is specified as [n.d.].
Access to all of these collections is open, although users should remember that restrictions, including those pertaining to copyright, usually apply as regards the production of photocopies or other facsimilies of materials in these collections.
Wednesday, May 22nd
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