The first annual report of the first permanent collection of modern art in the U.S.
SOCIÉTÉ ANONYME, INC. / MUSEUM OF MODERN ART / REPORT / 1920 - 1921
Founded 1920 by Man Ray, Katherine Dreier, and Marcel Duchamp, the purpose of the Société Anonyme was to promote the exhibition and appreciation of modern art. They sponsored talks, mounted shows (including the landmark 1926 International Exhibition of Modern Art at the Brooklyn Museum, as well as the first American one-person shows of Kandinsky, Klee, Campendonk, and Leger), and published books. The first year of these activities is documented here, during which the S.A. "acted as a leaven in the art world of America." Included are budgets, bylaws, descriptions of exhibitions (revealing notes on display and gallery design), lists of the exhibited artists (demonstrating the internationalism of modern art and including numerous lesser-known names), schedules of lectures held (such as "The First Birthday Party: An Evening with Gertrude Stein"), and a catalogue of the reference library (with annotations the compilers considered important, such as "very rare, out of print" and "entered into the Library because it shows the break of the earlier Renaissance from the Byzantine"), as well as reproductions of artworks from Villon, Stella, Van Gogh, Schwitters, Picasso, Duchamp, and others.
OCLC locates just 13 scattered copies across several records, with most major relevant institutions lacking. A rare and vivid document from a groundbreaking organization.
(New York): (The Société Anonyme), . 10'' x 6.25''. Original salmon boards with printed title label. 52 pages. Some professional restoration to spine, covers a bit rubbed with small split to top of rear joint. Else clean and sound.
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