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NMA38-Joseph Stella - Visionary Nature
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Edited with text by Stephanie Mayer Heydt. Edited with illustrated chronology by Audrey Lewis. Foreword by Rand Suffolk Thomas Padon. Text by Ellen E. Roberts, Karli Wurzelbacher, Ara H. Merjian.
The first major monograph on the visionary nature paintings of the pioneering American modernistThough Joseph Stella is primarily recognized for his dynamic Futurist-inspired paintings of New York, particularly of the Brooklyn Bridge, he was also compelled to express the powerful connection he felt to the natural world, a subject he pursued persistently throughout his career. Visionary Nature presents an overdue examination of the complexity and spirituality driving Stella’s nature-based works, illustrating the inspirations, sources and stylistic influences behind their creation.A prolific creator of lyrical and exuberant depictions of flowers, plants and birds, Stella saw mystery and purity in nature and explored it by combining realism and fantasy with a modernist aesthetic. By focusing on his unique nature-based vocabulary and the context in which it developed, Visionary Nature reconsiders how this body of work relates to his career, revealing a surprising continuity between seemingly disparate subjects and exploring how these works are reflective of Stella’s passionate spirituality.Joseph Stella (1877–1946) was born in Italy and moved to New York City in 1896. He returned to Europe in 1909 and befriended Gertrude Stein and Italian Futurist artists. Moving back to New York in 1913, he joined the Stieglitz circle and became associated with the American Precisionist movement of the 1910s–1940s. Stella succumbed to heart failure in 1946.