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Society of Independent Artists

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Title: Society of Independent Artists  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Fountain (Duchamp), Clara Tice, Charles Prendergast, Walter Conrad Arensberg, Appropriation (art)
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Society of Independent Artists

Society of Independent Artists was an association of American artists founded in 1916 and based in New York.

Based on the French Société des Artistes Indépendants, the goal of the society was to hold annual exhibitions by avant-garde artists. Exhibitions were to be open to anyone who wanted to display their work, and shows were without juries or prizes. In order to enter, one had to pay a six-dollar membership and entry fee. Founders of the Society were Walter Arensberg, John Covert, Marcel Duchamp, Katherine Sophie Dreier, William J. Glackens, Albert Gleizes, John Marin, Walter Pach, Man Ray, John Sloan and Joseph Stella.

The "First Annual Exhibition" of the society at the Grand Central Palace, New York, April 10-May 6, 1917, included more than 2,000 art works, which the catalog indicates were hung in alphabetical order by the artist's last name. Although there were entries from all over the world, they were predominantly by artists of New York and other East Coast cities.[1]

Marcel Duchamp resigned as a director after the Society refused to include in the exhibition his Fountain — a readymade in the form of a urinal and signed with the pseudonym "R. Mutt." The incident pointed out that the exhibition was not truly open.

Following the first president, William Glackens, John Sloan was president from 1918 until his death in 1951. From 1918 to 1934 A.S. Baylinson served as secretary.[2]



  1. ^ Catalogue of the First Annual Exhibition of the Society of Independent Artists
  2. ^ "Finding Aid". A Finding Aid to the A. S. Baylinson Papers, 1929-1955, in the Archives of American Art, by Jean Fitzgerald. Archives of American Art. 2005. Retrieved 30 Jun 2011. 

External links

  • Documenting the Gilded Age: New York City Exhibitions at the Turn of the 20th Century A New York Art Resources Consortium project. Exhibition catalogs of the Society of Independent Artists.

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