Joseph Stella (1877-1946)
Property from the Estate of Richard T. York
Joseph Stella (1877-1946)

Collage #7

Joseph Stella (1877-1946)
Collage #7
signed twice 'J. Stella Joseph Stella' (lower right)
collage with pasted papers on paper
10 x 8 in. (25.4 x 20.3 cm.)
Executed circa 1921.
Estate of the artist.
With Rabin and Krueger Gallery, Newark, New Jersey.
Private collection, New Jersey.
With Zabriskie Gallery, New York.
Private collection, New York, until 1988.
New York, Museum of Modern Art, The Art of Assemblage, 1961.
Warsaw, Poland, American Embassy, Art in Embassies, 1962-64.
Los Angeles, California, Margo Leavin Gallery, Twentieth-Century Collage, 1991.
New York, Marlborough Gallery, On Paper: Selected Drawings of the 19th and 20th Centuries, 2000.

Lot Essay

Made primarily from both found and saved scraps of paper, bits of advertisements, theatre programs and newspaper clippings, Joseph Stella's collages were created from objects of everyday life. The pieces of paper, seen in the context of the collages, represent contemporary urban life in much the same way that his images of bridges, skyscrapers and factories did in his paintings and drawings. The found quality of the discarded papers and the process of transformation of a found object into art, relates to the "ready-mades" of Stella's friend, Marcel Duchamp. However, Stella did not wish to see his collages as a Dada expression. While greatly intrigued by some aspects of Dada, Stella chose to synthesize only the elements and ideas of the movement that attracted him. In Collage #7, as in his other collages, Stella did not subscribe to the anti-art implications of Dada. Rather, his transformation of urban debris into something lasting and beautiful affirmed his faith in the power of art.

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