Prints, Drawings, and Photographs
Stairway to the StudioMade in New York City, New York, United States, North and Central America
Charles Sheeler, American, 1883 - 1965
Chalk, crayon, and opaque watercolor on buff laid paper
Currently not on view
1985-59-1Bequest of Mrs. Earl Horter in memory of her husband, 1985
LabelEmpty hallways and endless staircases were favorite subjects of Sheeler, although he denied that his fascination with these Surrealist motifs owed anything to the images of that artistic movement. In this most austere of his stairway compositions, we are faced with stark contradictions between plunging perspective and abstract surface pattern, and between matter-of-fact realism and the haunting loneliness of the stairway climbing to infinity. This particular staircase led to Sheeler's studio above the Whitney Studio Club on West Eighth Street in New York.