An insightful study of Joseph Cornell’s fascination with the Cubist painter Juan Gris, shedding new light on the work of both artists
Joseph Cornell first viewed Cubist painter Juan Gris’s The Man at the Café in October 1953. This visual encounter prompted Cornell to create more than a dozen hand-constructed shadow boxes as homages to Gris, each featuring a variation on a motif that echoes formal elements in Gris’s painting. This unique book explores Cornell’s deep fascination with Gris, uncovering within Cornell’s work multiple allusions to Gris’s crucial influence and investigating cross-currents such as the artists’ shared interests in French culture and the ballet. Birds of a Feather yields a new perspective on Cornell’s famed boxes while also shedding light on Gris’s painting, establishing points of connection between two key figures of the avant-garde who lived a generation apart.