Search collection catalog »
E-NEWS Facebook logo Twitter logo Google logo YouTube
TheMorgan
Current

Upcoming

Online

Past

2013–2014

2012–2013

2011–2012

2010–2011

2009–2010

2008–2009

2007–2008

2006–2007

2004–2006

2002–2003

2001–2002

2000–2001

1999–2000

Video
 

Exhibitions | Past

Stuart Davis: Art and Theory, 1920–31
September 10 through December 15, 2002

As part of a commitment to build a representative collection of works on paper by twentieth-century artists, the Morgan acquired two major works by the American painter and draftsman Stuart Davis (1892–1964): his earliest known diary, used by the artist between 1920 and 1922, and a sketchbook dated 1926. To celebrate these acquisitions, the Morgan presented Stuart Davis: Art and Theory, 1920–31.

Davis's extensive writings in journals and notebooks, often accompanied by drawings and diagrams, offer crucial insights into his manner of working and constitute a storehouse of images and ideas that served as the point of departure for some of his most ambitious canvases. Of particular interest is the role of drawing, which Davis regarded as the foundation of his art and a primary means of recording sensations and testing ideas.

Purchased on the Young Associates Fund, the Morgan's journal by Davis contains some of the artist's earliest thoughts about color theory and the use of language and signs in painting. Having been in private hands since its creation, this unpublished journal is now available to scholars, and with this exhibition, to the public. Shortly after the purchase of the journal, the Morgan acquired one of the artist's sketchbooks. It was used during the seminal decade of the 1920s. The first example of Davis's draftsmanship to enter the collection, the intact sketchbook comprises seventy-four sketches that chronicle the artist's development of a pictorial language during his early years in New York, out of which evolved his mature style.

This small, highly focused exhibition of twelve works, including both drawings and paintings, examined Davis's journal and sketchbook in the development and implementation of his artistic theory between 1920 and 1931. Accompanying the materials from the Morgan's collection were works from both private and public collections, including that of Earl Davis, the artist's son, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Newark Museum, New Jersey, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

Stuart Davis: Art and Theory, 1920–31 is sponsored by the Marilyn M. Simpson Charitable Trust.


Top of page


© The Morgan Library & Museum, 225 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016, (212) 685-0008

Home Museum »
Visit the Museum
Exhibitions
Calendar
Public Programs
Education
Collection »
Collection highlights
Online Exhibitions
Music Manuscripts Online
Conservation
The Drawing Institute
Multimedia
CORSAIR Collection Catalog
Research »
CORSAIR Collection Catalog
Research Services
Reading Room
Research Guides
The Drawing Institute
Photography & Rights
About »
Press
History of the Morgan
The Morgan Campus
Employment
Internships
Volunteer
Support »
Membership
Make a Donation
Corporate Membership
Corporate Entertaining
Shop Contact

E-News | Site Index | Terms and Conditions


The programs of The Morgan Library & Museum are made possible with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Background images: Photography by Todd Eberle unless otherwise noted. © 2006 Todd Eberle.