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Untitled Book Object (Journal d'Agriculture Pratique et Journal de L'Agriculture)

1911 (publication); 1933-1945
Joseph Cornell (American, 1903–1972)
Untitled Book Object is a captivating narrative sequence of found objects and painstakingly realized drawings and cutouts that with each turn of the page unfolds like the scenes of a play or a cinematic storyboard. Cornell worked on the book from 1933 to 1945, modifying and adding collaged elements to the pages of the Journal d’Agriculture Pratique et Journal de L’Agriculture, an almanac of modern farming published in France in 1911. The artist’s interventions subvert the purpose and meaning of the original publication by imposing into its dry, didactic logic a disruptive realm of wit and fantasy. The subject of the book catered to Cornell’s fondness for images of animals, scientific devices, and antiquated machinery. Photographs of starlets appear in the Book Object with great frequency, as do references to artists, including Diego Velázquez, Édouard Manet, Pablo Picasso, Alfred Stieglitz, Salvador Dalí, and Marcel Duchamp.

Object Details

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