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Image of Composition with Boats

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Composition with Boats

Stuart Davis (AKA Edward Stuart Davis), American, (December 7, 1892–June 24, 1964)

Creation date: 1932
Creation place: United States

Other Information

Type: Oil Painting
Medium and Support: Oil on canvas
Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Edith G. Halpert
Accession Number: 1941.82
State/Province: Massachusetts
Dimensions: 20 in. x 22 in. (50.8 cm x 55.88 cm)
Currently on view


Edith Gregor Halpert, New York, New York (ca. 1932 - October 17, 1941)

Stuart Davis, New York, New York (1932 - September 30, 1932)

The Downtown Gallery, Inc., New York, New York (September 30, 1932 - ca. 1932)

San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, California (October 17, 1941 - )

Label Copy

Davis developed his own interpretation of modernism and translated Cubism and abstraction into distinct canvases. He grew up in Philadelphia and, through his father, the art director of the Philadelphia Press, became aware of many leading artists. New York became an important site for his creative advancement. He exhibited five works in the Armory Show in 1913 and participated in the first biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1932. Davis finally traveled to Paris in 1928, much later than many of his contemporaries, and was greatly influenced by Pablo Picasso’s minimal line drawings. The outlined and overlapping forms in Composition with Boats evoke a sense of flatness in terms of dimension, but in terms of movement, there appears to be kinetic activity in the looping lines that delineate the shoreline of Gloucester, Massachusetts, which the artist depicted in several skeletal sketches during 1932.
Last Updated: 3/20/2023


This object was included in the following exhibitions:

California State Fair and Exposition California State Fair and Exposition , 8/1/1956 - 9/30/1956

Looking at America: An Exhibition Featuring Selections from the San Diego Museum Charles H. MacNider Museum , 8/21/1992 - 10/4/1992

Ortra vez Modern and Contemporary The San Diego Museum of Art , 3/30/2013 - 7/14/2013

Newman in Context , 6/29/2013 - 9/8/2013

Selections of Modern Art The San Diego Museum of Art , 7/23/2013 - 11/3/2013


This object has the following bibliographic references:

The Fine Arts Gallery of San Diego Catalogue: San Diego Museum of Art. San Diego, California, 1960
Page Number: 11

Marlene Gharbo Linderman. Art in the Elementary School Brown & Benchmark Publishers. Dubuque, Iowa, 1997
Page Number: 61, 62, Figure Number: 3.20

Marlene Gharbo Linderman. Art in the Elementary School Brown & Benchmark Publishers. Dubuque, Iowa, 1997
Page Number: 80

William R. Wilson. The Los Angeles Times Book of California Museums Harry N. Abrams, Incorporated. New York, New York, 1986
Page Number: 268, 269, Figure Number: 222

Ms. Ani Boyajian, ed. Stuart Davis: Yale University Art Gallery. New Haven, Connecticut, 2007
Page Number: 269 no. 1592, Figure Number: 1592


Inscription, On stretcher:

Signature, Lower right:

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