Skip to main content

Otto Stark Collection

Identifier: MSS075

Scope and Contents

The collection is divided into five series: catalogs, correspondence, publication, illustrations, and photographs.

Catalogs (1887, 1910) contains catalogs from the Paris Salon of 1887 and the Exposicion Internacional de Arte del Centenario Buenos Aires of 1910. Stark exhibited paintings in both shows.

Correspondence (1888-1970) includes letters, cards, and telegrams to Stark and his family. Most of the letters are from his father, Gustav Stark, and are written in German.

Publication (1895) is a Xeroxed copy of the article "The Evolution of Impressionism," by Stark. It appeared in the periodical Modern Art.

Illustrations (n.d.) are small copies of illustrations done by Stark. All of the illustrations feature children.

Photographs (n.d.) are of Stark, his parents, some of his children, and other relatives. There are also copy prints and negatives of the original photographs.


  • 1887 - 1970


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to the public without restriction.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) govern the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material.

Historical Note

Otto Stark (1859-1926) was an Indianapolis-born artist who gained national prominence as a member of the "Hoosier Group," a loose association of Indiana artists that included T. C. Steele, J. Ottis Adams, and William Forsyth. Stark's work most clearly showed the influence of Impressionism, and he often featured children in his work.

Stark's artistic career began at the age of 16 when he was apprenticed to a lithographer in Cincinnati. Stark also enrolled in the School of Design at the University of Cincinnati. He moved to New York in 1879, where he studied at the Art Students' League while supporting himself as an illustrator. Stark studied in Paris from 1885 to 1888, and he exhibited paintings in the Paris Salons of 1886 and 1887. He also married while living in France.

Stark and his family returned to the United States in 1888, living first in New York and later in Philadelphia. After his wife's death in 1891, Stark moved back to Cincinnati. He returned to Indianapolis in 1893 and began offering art classes in his studio. He became the Supervisor of Art at Manual High School in 1899 and an instructor in composition and illustration at the John Herron Art Institute in 1905. He retired from both positions in 1919. As a teacher, Stark influenced such artists as William Edouard Scott, Elmer Taflinger, and John Wesley Hardrick.

Stark remained an active artist until his death. He exhibited paintings at shows in Chicago (1894), Omaha (1898), St. Louis (1904), Buenos Aires (1910), and San Francisco (1915) as well as in local and regional exhibits.


0.4 Cubic Feet (1 box)


Otto Stark Collection, 1887-1970
Gregory H. Mobley
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the German-American Archives Repository

IUPUI University Library
755 W. Michigan St.
Room 0133
Indianapolis IN 46202 USA