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Words and Music of Two Hemispheres

Francis Criss, American (born England), 1901 - 1973

Made in United States, North and Central America

c. 1938

Oil on Masonite

14 1/8 × 18 9/16 inches (35.9 × 47.1 cm) Frame: 20 1/2 × 24 1/2 × 1 3/4 inches (52.1 × 62.2 × 4.4 cm)

© Estate of Francis Criss

Curatorial Department:
American Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Gift of Dr. Herman Lorber, 1944

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Francis Criss was born in London, but grew up in Philadelphia, where he studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the Barnes Foundation. By 1932, he had his first solo show at the Contemporary Arts Gallery (New York), and was chosen to participate in the First Biennial Exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art. As exemplified in this painting, Criss favored the vivid hues and flat, two-dimensional planes of Cubism to depict New York City, especially its buildings, elevated subways, and billboards.