A Transatlantic Avant-Garde: American Artists in Paris, 1918 – 1939
December 20, 2003 – March 28, 2004
In the 1920s and 1930s Paris was the world’s art center, attracting key international artists who gleaned ideas and styles from its heady scene. A Transatlantic Avant-Garde: American Artists in Paris explored the impact that the city and its invigorating culture had on leading American artists who maintained links with Europe at a time when nationalism was especially strong. During the interwar years, the French greatly admired American ingenuity and popular culture – from jazz music to billboard advertising to soaring skyscrapers – and key American artists discovered a confidence in themselves, their art, and their American identity, oddly enough, in Paris. Paintings, sculptures, photographs and drawings traced the innovations of key American artists at the heart of various avant-garde movements in the French capital including Alexander Calder, Stuart Davis, Charles Demuth, and Man Ray, as well as the works of French artists such as Fernand Léger. The exhibition was organized by the Musée d’Art Américain Giverny, Terra Foundation for the Arts, and sponsored by The Allen Foundation for the Arts and Comcast.