8fbd035081bd09934004bfc61d79c31c5d5d9ee4

Tag: washington dc

Date:

1955

Artist:

Stuart Davis (American, 1892–1964)

About this artwork

Stuart Davis was acquainted from an early age with John Sloan and Robert Henri, leaders of the so-called Ashcan School, a group of artists committed to depicting all aspects of modern urban life. Davis studied at Henri’s New York school, but he eventually came to disagree with his teacher’s belief in the preeminence of content over composition and form; instead, he created a style in which he generalized and abstracted his shapes and the spaces between them.

Nonetheless, Davis’s art is never totally abstract. Twentieth-century America is reflected in the shapes and colors he chose and in the sheer vitality of his compositions. His style—big, bright, bold, and clear—is completely appropriate to his subject matter. Forms have been reduced to large colored planes; words or numbers are simplified and offered as elements of design. In Ready-to-Wear, the bright, unmixed colors recall those of the French artist Fernand Léger. The way in which they intersect and interrupt one another, however, conveys a mood that is distinctly American: energetic, jazzy, mass produced—all qualities summed up in the title. The planes, reminiscent of overlapping pasted-down paper cutouts, even suggest the garment patterns from which ready-to-wear clothes are assembled.

Status

Currently Off View

Department

Arts of the Americas

Artist


Stuart Davis

Title

Ready-to-Wear

Place

United States (Artist’s nationality:)

Date 



Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.


1955

Medium

Oil on canvas

Inscriptions

Signed l. right: Stuart Davis

Dimensions

142.6 × 106.7 cm (56 1/8 × 42 in.)

Credit Line

Purchased with funds provided by
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