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James Arkatov photographs and interviews

Identifier: 0191

Scope and Content

This collection contains approximately 200 black and white images of classical conductors and soloists performing, and 11 black and white and 1 color image of artists by James Arkatov. Most of the photographs of musicians appeared in the USC Libraries exhibition "Grace Notes" in 1995 and were published in Arkatov's book Masters of Music (Capra Press, 1990). Also included are audio cassettes of interviews conducted by Arkatov for his book project "Artists: the creative personality" in 1998.


  • 1946 - 1999
  • Majority of material found within


Conditions Governing Access

COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE. Advance notice required for access.

Conditions Governing Use

The collection contains published materials; researchers are reminded of the copyright restrictions imposed by publishers on reusing their articles and parts of books. It is the responsibility of researchers to acquire permission from publishers when reusing such materials. The copyright to unpublished materials belongs to the heirs of the writers. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Biographical Note

James Arkatov was born in 1920 and raised in San Francisco, where his father, Alexander Arkatov, owned a photography salon. James was a cellist with the San Francisco Symphony, the Indianapolis Symphony, the Pittsburgh Symphony, and NBC's orchestra and was a founder of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. While in Pittsburgh, James began to photograph famous soloists as they came through town and he continued to do so once he relocated to Los Angeles.


3.37 Linear Feet (5 boxes)

Language of Materials



James Arkatov was a cellist who photographed famous concert soloists performing. This collection consists of black and white prints of the photographs he took between 1946 and 1999 of musicians and artists, as well as interviews of artists.


Photographs are arranged chronologically.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of James Arkatov.

Finding Aid of the James Arkatov photographs
Rebecca Hirsch and Sarah Guidas
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
The processing of this collection and the creation of this finding aid was funded by the generous support of the National Historic Publications and Records Commission.

Repository Details

Part of the USC Libraries Special Collections Repository

Doheny Memorial Library 206
3550 Trousdale Parkway
Los Angeles California 90089-0189 United States