FYI February 17, 2020

On This Day

1913 – The Armory Show opens in New York City, displaying works of artists who are to become some of the most influential painters of the early 20th century.
The Armory Show, also known as the International Exhibition of Modern Art, was a show organized by the Association of American Painters and Sculptors in 1913. It was the first large exhibition of modern art in America, as well as one of the many exhibitions that have been held in the vast spaces of U.S. National Guard armories.

The three-city exhibition started in New York City’s 69th Regiment Armory, on Lexington Avenue between 25th and 26th Streets, from February 17 until March 15, 1913.[1] The exhibition went on to the Art Institute of Chicago and then to The Copley Society of Art in Boston,[2] where, due to a lack of space, all the work by American artists was removed.[3]

The show became an important event in the history of American art, introducing astonished Americans, who were accustomed to realistic art, to the experimental styles of the European avant garde, including Fauvism, Cubism, and Futurism. The show served as a catalyst for American artists, who became more independent and created their own “artistic language.”

The origins of the show lie in the emergence of progressive groups and independent exhibitions in the early 20th century (with significant French precedents), which challenged the aesthetic ideals, exclusionary policies, and authority of the National Academy of Design, while expanding exhibition and sales opportunities, enhancing public knowledge, and enlarging audiences for contemporary art.[4]



Born On This Day

1877 – Isabelle Eberhardt, Swiss explorer and author (d. 1904)[17]
Isabelle Wilhelmine Marie Eberhardt (17 February 1877 – 21 October 1904) was a Swiss explorer and author. As a teenager, Eberhardt, educated in Switzerland by her father, published short stories under a male pseudonym. She became interested in North Africa, and was considered a proficient writer on the subject despite learning about the region only through correspondence. After an invitation from photographer Louis David, Eberhardt moved to Algeria in May 1897. She dressed as a man and converted to Islam, eventually adopting the name Si Mahmoud Saadi. Eberhardt’s unorthodox behaviour made her an outcast among European settlers in Algeria and the French administration.

Eberhardt’s acceptance by the Qadiriyya, an Islamic order, convinced the French administration that she was a spy or an agitator. She survived an assassination attempt shortly thereafter. In 1901, the French administration ordered her to leave Algeria, but she was allowed to return the following year after marrying her partner, the Algerian soldier Slimane Ehnni. Following her return, Eberhardt wrote for a newspaper published by Victor Barrucand and worked for General Hubert Lyautey. In 1904, at the age of 27, she was killed by a flash flood in Aïn Séfra.

In 1906, Barrucand began publishing her remaining manuscripts, which received critical acclaim. She was seen posthumously as an advocate of decolonisation, and streets were named after her in Béchar and Algiers. Eberhardt’s life has been the subject of several works, including the 1991 film Isabelle Eberhardt and the 2012 opera Song from the Uproar: The Lives and Deaths of Isabelle Eberhardt.




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