Photograph Based on the "Picasso-Braque" Exhibition at 291 Gallery, New York
Alfred Stieglitz (American, Hoboken, New Jersey 1864–1946 New York)
19.4 x 24.4 cm (7 5/8 x 9 5/8 in.)
Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949
Not on view
An Exhibition of Recent Drawings and Paintings by Picasso and by Braque, of Paris took place between December 9, 1914, and January 11, 1915, immediately following Statuary in Wood by African Savages. Shortly before or after the exhibition, Stieglitz utilized a Kota reliquary sculpture just arrived from France at the center of a striking photographic composition. Methodically arranged in harmonious relation to one another are a seemingly incongruous assembly of formal elements: a Kota sculpture flanked by works by Picasso (on the wall), and a wasp's nest and brass bowl (on pedestals). Through such deliberate choreography, Stieglitz created a modernist manifest, in which all objects on display, whatever their nature, share a same aesthetic value.
Although Stieglitz's inscription indicates that this photograph records the 1915 Picasso and Braque show at 291, it may not depict the actual exhibition. None of the several exhibition reviews notes the striking juxtaposition between the works by Picasso, the Kota reliquary, and the wasp's nest. In addition, the Picasso drawings rest on the shelf rather than hang on the wall. (Greenough)