A groundbreaking publication that offers fresh perspectives on the seminal 1913 Armory Show, a turning point in the history of American art and culture.
Edited by Marilyn Satin Kushner and Kimberly Orcutt
Casey Nelson Blake, Senior Historian
Contributions by William C. Agee, Judith A. Barter, Avis Berman, Casey Nelson Blake, Daniel H. Borus, Leon Botstein, Sarah Burns, Barbara Haskell, Susan Hegeman, Marilyn Satin Kushner, Susan G. Larkin, Doïna Lemny, Laurette E. McCarthy, Anne McCauley, Virginia M. Mecklenburg, Charles Musser, Francis M. Naumann, Roberta J. M. Olson, Kimberly Orcutt, Didier Ottinger, Max Page, Aimée Brown Price, Michael R. Taylor, Martha Tedeschi, and Carol Troyen
Organized by a small group of American artists and presented in the huge space of the 69th Regiment Armory in New York City, the ambitious Armory Show (officially known as the International Exhibition of Modern Art) brought together some 1,400 American and European works. It introduced the American public to European avant-garde painting and sculpture by artists such as Marcel Duchamp, Henri Matisse, and Pablo Picasso. The popular response and media sensation, as well as the deeper critical debates inspired by the show, made it one of the most important exhibitions ever held in the United States.
This outstanding interdisciplinary volume includes thirty-one contributions by eminent scholars across diverse fields, and offers an unprecedented breath of coverage, re-examining the 1913 exhibition and its historical and cultural context. It draws on contemporary developments in music, literature, and early film to evoke the wider social, political, and economic climate of the time. Over 350 carefully chosen illustrations reflect the richness of the show, shedding new light on the artists represented, and vividly evoking the public’s response to the works and how the media responded to this pivotal and legendary exhibition.
Appendices document the works in the 1913 exhibition and a selected bibliography covers the show itself and its key figures.
Marilyn Satin Kushner is Curator and Head of the Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections at the New-York Historical Society.
Kimberly Orcutt is an independent scholar and was Henry Luce Foundation Curator of American Art at the New-York Historical Society 2006-2013.
Casey Nelson Blake is professor of History and American Studies at Columbia University, and the show’s Senior Historian.
Table of Contents
- President’s Foreword
- Curators’ Statement and Acknowledgments
- A Century of the Armory Show:Modernism and Myth by Marilyn Satin Kushner
- Organizers of the Armory Show
Arthur B. Davies—Hero or Villain? by Kimberly Orcutt
Walt Kuhn: Armory Showman by Gail Stavitsky
Walter Pach: Agent of Modernism by Laurette E. McCarthy
“So many thrills, so much excitement”: Elmer MacRae’s Role in the Armory Show by Susan G. Larkin
- New York and the United States ca. 1913
Greenwich Village Modernism: “The Essence of It All Was Communication” by Casey Nelson Blake
The Armory Show in the Provisional City by Max Page
The Armory Show and the Transformation of American Culture by Daniel H. Borus
Echoes of the Armory Show: Modern Music in New York by Leon Botstein
The “Big Show” and the Little Galleries: Alfred Stieglitz and the Search for Modern by Anne McCauley
- Art Photography in 1913 141
A “Wordminded People” Encounters the Armory Show by Susan Hegeman
1913: A Feminist Moment in the Arts by Charles Musser
- The Exhibition
Off to the Armory Show! by Didier Ottinger
“An Explosion in a Shingle Factory”:Marcel Duchamp’s Nude Descending a Staircase(No.2) by Francis M. Naumann
“The Cuban who Outcubed the Cubists”:Francis Picabia and the 1913 Armory Show by Michael R. Taylor
Henri Matisse at the Armory Show—and Beyond by William C. Agee
Brancusi’s Busts:Work in Progress by Doïna Lemny,
Puvis de Chavannes, Pioneer and Paragon of Modernism by Aimée Brown Price American Art
Slouching toward Modernism: American Art at the Armory Show by Virginia M.Mecklenburg sheds
Robert Henri’s Manifesto by Kimberly Orcutt
A Pre-Emptive Strike: JohnMarin and the Armory Show by Martha Tedeschi
Morgan Russell: A “Barbarian” or American Avant-Garde in Paris? by Marilyn Satin Kushner
Morton Livingston Schamberg: A Short Life, a Major Achievement by William C. Agee
Works on Paper
Drawings at the Armory: The Currency of Change and Modernism by Roberta J. M. Olson
Revisiting Editions: Prints in the Armory Show by Marilyn Satin Kushner
“Public Verdict”: Debating Modernism at the Armory Show by Kimberly Orcutt
Cubist Comedy and Futurist Follies: The Visual Culture of the Armory Show by Sarah Burns
- Traveling Venues
“The Great Confusion”: The Armory Show in Chicago by Judith A. Barter
“Unwept, unhonored, and unsung”: The Armory Show in Boston by Carol Troyen
The Legacy of the Armory Show: Fiasco or Transformation? by Barbara Haskell
“Creating a New Epoch”: American Collectors and Dealers and the Armory Show by Avis Berman
- Selected Bibliography
- Appendix A The Complete 1913 Armory Show Checklist
- Appendix B List of Works in the 1913 Armory Show by Gallery