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Joseph Stella Art

American, Italian, 1877-1946
American, Italian, 1877-1946

Joseph Stella was a visionary artist who painted what he saw, an idiosyncratic and individual experience of his time and place. Stella arrived in New York in 1896, part of a wave of Italian immigrants from poverty-stricken Southern Italy. But Stella was not a child of poverty. His father was a notary and respected citizen in Muro Lucano, a small town in the southern Apennines. The five Stella brothers were all properly educated in Naples. Stella’s older brother, Antonio, was the first of the family to come to America. Antonio Stella trained as a physician in Italy, and was a successful and respected doctor in the Italian community centered in Greenwich Village. He sponsored and supported his younger brother, Joseph, first sending him to medical school in New York, then to study pharmacology, and then sustaining him through the early days of his artistic career. Antonio Stella specialized in the treatment of tuberculosis and was active in social reform circles. His connections were instrumental in Joseph Stella’s early commissions for illustrations in reform journals.

Joseph Stella, from the beginning, was an outsider. He was of the Italian-American community, but did not share its overwhelming poverty and general lack of education. He went back to Italy on several occasions, but was no longer an Italian. His art incorporated many influences. At various times his work echoed the concerns and techniques of the so-called Ashcan School, of New York Dada, of Futurism and, of Cubism, among others. These are all legitimate influences, but Stella never totally committed himself to any group. He was a convivial, but ultimately solitary figure, with a lifelong mistrust of any authority external to his own personal mandate. He was in Europe during the time that Alfred Stieglitz established his 291 Gallery. When Stella returned he joined the international coterie of artists who gathered at the West Side apartment of the art patron Conrad Arensberg. It was here that Stella became close friends with Marcel Duchamp.

Stella was 19 when he arrived in America and studied in the early years of the century at the Art Students League, and with William Merritt Chase, under whose tutelage he received rigorous training as a draftsman. His love of line, and his mastery of its techniques, is apparent early in his career in the illustrations he made for various social reform journals. Stella, whose later work as a colorist is breathtakingly lush, never felt obliged to choose between line and color. He drew throughout his career, and unlike other modernists, whose work evolved inexorably to more and more abstract form, Stella freely reverted to earlier realist modes of representation whenever it suited him. This was because, in fact, his “realist” work was not “true to nature,” but true to Stella’s own unique interpretation. Stella began to draw flowers, vegetables, butterflies, and birds in 1919, after he had finished the Brooklyn Bridge series of paintings, which are probably his best-known works. These drawings of flora and fauna were initially coincidental with his fantastical, nostalgic and spiritual vision of his native Italy which he called Tree of My Life (Mr. and Mrs. Barney A. Ebsworth Foundation and Windsor, Inc., St. Louis, illus. in Barbara Haskell, Joseph Stella, exh. cat. [New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1994], p. 111 no. 133).

(Biography provided by Hirschl & Adler)

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Two Wood Ducks on a Flowering Branch
By Joseph Stella
Located in New York, NY
Joseph Stella was a visionary artist who painted what he saw, an idiosyncratic and individual experience of his time and place. Stella arrived in New York in 1896, part of a wave of ...
Category

20th Century American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Color Pencil

Reclining Nude
By Joseph Stella
Located in Palm Desert, CA
A painting by Joseph Stella. "Reclining Nude" is a figurative painting, oil on canvas in a bright palette of yellows, greens, and tans by American Modernist artist Joseph Stella. The...
Category

Early 20th Century American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Canvas, Oil

Water Lily and Woodchuck
By Joseph Stella
Located in Miami, FL
Powerfull visual done at Stella's peak period of creativity.
Category

1910s Futurist Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Gouache, Paper

Thistles
By Joseph Stella
Located in Miami, FL
Signature: Signed, dated 1938 and inscribed Italy lower right. Thistles, 1938 Pastel on paper 25 3/4 × 18 3/4 in Work is framed Christie's, New York Very strong in person. Gallery st...
Category

1930s Post-Impressionist Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Pastel

"The Palm" Poster
By Joseph Stella
Located in Clinton Twp, MI
Poster. Measures 12.75 x 11 inches and is Unframed. Good Condition-minor wrinkle in upper-left corner (please see secondary photo for detail)/print has been cropped in upper white bo...
Category

Late 20th Century Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Lithograph

Still Life of Books and Chinese Lanterns
By Joseph Stella
Located in Miami, FL
Beautiful and colorful still life. Signed Lower Right, Framed
Category

1920s Futurist Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Pastel

"Study of Mt. Vesuvius" Oil on Canvas, Blue Tones, Landscape
By Joseph Stella
Located in Detroit, MI
“Study of Mt. Vesuvius" is a small intimate painting of an active volcano that has at times wrecked great destruction. As seen from a distance, it is a calm blue color while blue and...
Category

Late 20th Century American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Canvas, Oil

Still Life of Books and Chinese Lanterns
By Joseph Stella
Located in Miami, FL
Joseph Stella creates a vibrant and colorful still life that radiates energy. The selection of the subject matter is quite traditional. Stella is not designing the objects of the ...
Category

1920s Futurist Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Pastel

Pulcinella, Joseph Stella (Watercolor Figurative Work Early 20th Century)
By Joseph Stella
Located in Aerdenhout, NL
Joseph Stella Pulcinella Unknown Date Gouache on Paper 99 x 74 cm Provenance: Pensler Galleries, Washington, D.C. Ex-collection Josephine Lettera, New York
Category

Early 20th Century American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Paper, Gouache

Still Life of Books and Chinese Lanterns
By Joseph Stella
Located in Miami, FL
Still Life of Books and Chinese Lanterns Beautifully rendered in bright , luminous and expressive color
Category

1930s Expressionist Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Pastel

Woman with an Orange Shawl, Joesph Stella (Modernist Figurative Watercolour)
By Joseph Stella
Located in Aerdenhout, NL
Joseph Stella Woman with Orange Shawl Unknown Date Pencil and Watercolour 51 x 35.5 cm J. Stella/JML Coll. estate stamp lower right Provenance: the collection of Dr. Alan Pensler P...
Category

Early 20th Century American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Paper, Watercolor, Pencil

Man Seated at a Window, Joseph Stella, 1930 (Charcoal FIgurative Drawing)
By Joseph Stella
Located in Aerdenhout, NL
Joseph Stella Man Seated at a Window 1930 Charcoal and Pastels on Paper 38 x 29 cm Signed bottom right Provenance: Collection Zabriskie Gallery, New York
Category

1930s American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Paper, Charcoal, Pastel

"Tree, Trunk, and Roots, New York" Joseph Stella, American Modernism
By Joseph Stella
Located in New York, NY
Joseph Stella (1877 - 1946) Tree, Trunk, and Roots, Bronx, New York Oil on canvas 12 x 16 inches inscribed in another hand Joseph Stella/Estate and bears Joseph Stella Estate stamp ...
Category

1940s American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Canvas, Oil

Three Flowers
By Joseph Stella
Located in New York, NY
Category

20th Century American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Paper, Crayon

Original Joseph Stella Drawing
By Joseph Stella
Located in New Orleans, LA
A pencil sketch by famed American Modernist Joseph Stella, who burst on to the American scene at the epochal Armory Show of 1913 and whose work is today in the collections of every m...
Category

Early 20th Century Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Graphite

Study for the Creche
By Joseph Stella
Located in Santa Fe, NM
Study for the Creche 1929-1930 20" x 25.75" Framed: 33.12" x 38.75" Works on Paper, crayon and graphite on paper Signed lower left
Category

1920s Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Crayon, Paper, Graphite

STUDY OF A MAN WITH A HAT AND OVERCOAT
By Joseph Stella
Located in Portland, ME
Stella, Joseph. STUDY OF A MAN WITH A HAT AND OVERCOAT. Blue, red and black crayon on tan wove paper, c. 1920. 6 7/8 x 4 3/4 inches; 173 x 120 mm. Signed in pencil. Provenance: The P...
Category

1920s American Realist Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Crayon

Study for "The Jade Necklace"
By Joseph Stella
Located in Fairlawn, OH
Stamp lower right: "J Stella/JML Coll" Provenance: Collection of the artist Mrs. Giovanni Stella, the artist's sister-in-law Josephine M. Lattera (stamp: "J Stella/JML Co...
Category

20th Century Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Pencil

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Previously Available Items
"The Conversation"
By Joseph Stella
Located in Southampton, NY
Joseph Stella Joseph Stella (born Giuseppe Michele Stella, June 13, 1877 – November 5, 1946) was an Italian-born American Futurist painter best known for his depictions of industria...
Category

1920s American Modern Joseph Stella Art

Materials

Color Pencil

  • "The Conversation"
  • "The Conversation"
  • "The Conversation"
  • "The Conversation"
H 4 in. W 6.25 in. D 1.25 in.

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