American Folk Art Museum

Log Number: ST-248571-OMS-20

The American Folk Art Museum will use funds to preserve and digitize the first seven volumes of Henry Darger's masterwork, "The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What is Known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion" (also referred to as "In the Realms of the Unreal"). Henry Darger (1892-1973) was one of the most important self-taught or “outsider” artists of the twentieth century. The 15,145-page manuscript (7,269 pages of which are included in this project), accompanied by 22 large-scale watercolor panoramas, tell the epic story of the Vivian Girls - a story of war and peace, of good versus evil, which loosely parallels events of the American Civil War. The works were created in complete secrecy by Darger between 1930 and 1973. The conservation treatment of these fragile manuscripts and the digitization of their contents will enable broader access for researchers, scholars, and the general public, and will be matched by $157,375 in non-federal share.