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Florine Stettheimer: Painting Poetry

Florine Stettheimer, Portrait of Myself, 1923. Oil on canvas laid on board. 102.7 x 67.0 cm. Art Properties, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, Gift of the Estate of Ettie Stettheimer, 1967 (1967.17.5)

Florine Stettheimer, Family Portrait II, 1933. Oil on canvas. 117.4 x 164 cm. Museum of Modern Art, New York, Gift of Miss Ettie Stettheimer, 1956. 8.1956 Digital Image © The Museum of Modern Art/Licensed by SCALA / Art Resource, NY

Florine Stettheimer, Beauty Contest: To the Memory of P.T. Barnum, 1924. Oil on canvas, 127 x 152.4 cm. Wadsworth Athenaeum Museum of Art, Hartford, Connecticut, Gift of Ettie Stettheimer, 1947. 1947.242

Florine Stettheimer, Portrait of My Sister, Ettie Stettheimer, 1923. Oil on canvas on hardboard backing. 102.2 x 66.8 cm. Art Properties, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, Gift of the Estate of Ettie Stettheimer, 1967 (1967.17.9)

Florine Stettheimer, Spring Sale at Bendel's, 1921. Oil on canvas. 127 × 101.6 cm (50 × 40 in.). Philadelphia Museum of Art. Gift of Miss Ettie Stettheimer, 1951. The Philadelphia Museum of Art / Art Resource, NY

Florine Stettheimer, Picnic at Bedford Hills, 1918. Oil on canvas, 102.4 x 127.6 cm. Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia. Gift of Ettie Stettheimer, 1950.21

Exhibition dates

October 21, 2017 – January 28, 2018


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“Stettheimer’s singular paintings are among the most spellbinding and enduring in the history of art.” - New York Times

“See the show. Become her latest interesting guest.” - The New Yorker

“The first major exhibition in more than twenty years devoted to this wonderful, still underknown artist, should open some eyes.” – Hyperallergic

Painter, poet, designer and feminist are only a few of the words that describe the multifaceted early 20th-century artist Florine Stettheimer (1871-1944), one of the undersung pioneers of modern painting in America. Florine Stettheimer: Painting Poetry—the first major exhibition of her work in North America in twenty years, and the first ever in Canada—will offer fresh ways of thinking about her art both within its time, and as it resonates now within our own moment. It promises to delight audiences new to Stettheimer’s work. For those familiar with her work—especially her playful, vibrant, and psychologically complex paintings—it will offer fresh ways of understanding the lasting impact of both Stettheimer’s art and catalytic presence within some of the most innovative creative communities of her time.

“This exhibition reveals Florine Stettheimer as an uncompromising artist whose unique perspective broadens our understanding of what it means to be modern in the early decades of the last century,” says Georgiana Uhlyarik. “With her inventive compositions and daring use of materials, she defied conventions and insisted on her very own, singularly articulated artistic vision, complete with personal references, affirming Stettheimer as one of the boldest and most imaginative artists of her time.”

Showcasing around 50 paintings and drawings, as well as ballet and opera costume and set designs, the exhibition offers a timely consideration of this important artist, placing her centrally in the modern dialogue between high and mass culture. Her paintings challenged New York’s artistic elite, fueled the vanguard of her time, and continue to influence contemporary artists working today.

The exhibition is accompanied by a 168-page catalogue by Stephen Brown and Georgiana Uhlyarik. The book arrives at shopAGO in fall 2017.

Organized by the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, and the Jewish Museum, New York.

Florine Stettheimer is co-curated by Georgiana Uhlyarik, Associate Curator, Canadian Art, AGO, and Stephen Brown, Neubauer Family Foundation Associate Curator, The Jewish Museum.

Generously supported by

  • The Cyril & Dorothy, Joel & Jill Reitman Family Foundation
  • The Dorothy Strelsin Foundation

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