1913 Armory Show

The Smithsonian Institution's Archives of American Art commemorates the centennial of the International Exhibition of Modern Art, known as the 1913 Armory Show. It was the first major exhibition of European modern art in the U.S. The show opened in New York in February and traveled to Chicago in March and Boston in April. The Archives holds the official records of the Association of American Painters and Sculptors (AAPS), the group who organized it. The Archives also holds the papers of key organizers. This timeline features more than 150 primary sources from these and other materials. The letters, telegrams, minutes of meetings, memos, and other documents offer insight into the development and presentation of the show. Many reveal details about the organizers; others provide information about how artists, critics, and others responded to the exhibition.

Letter to Vera from Paris

Walt Kuhn reviewed his working relationship with Arthur B. Davies and reported with great confidence that their efforts would result in a new movement.

Borglum Resigned His "Farcical Position"

Gutzon Borglum, a sculptor, resigned his position as AAPS Vice President in a lengthy, single-spaced letter. He raised concerns about AAPS's positions and procedures.

Art Purchased

Walter Pach's notebook included detailed sales records. On April 7, he sold Duchamp's "Nu-esquisse" for $162 to Manierre Dawson.

Instructions to Pach

This letter illustrates the ways in which the principal organizers collaborated and divided responsibilities. Arthur B. Davies and Walt Kuhn wrote detailed instructions to Walter Pach.

Publicity Preparations

Arthur B. Davies telegrammed Walter Pach in Paris for photographs to use in advertising.

Armory Divided into Galleries

Organizers subdivided the Armory's interior space into separate rooms.

AAPS Convened

Henry Fitch Taylor, an artist who managed the Madison Gallery, invited more than a dozen other artists (all men) to meet at the gallery at 305 Madison Avenue. These men formed the core of what became the Association of American Painters and Sculptors (AAPS).

AAPS Convened

Fourteen members of AAPS assembled. They nominated men, and discussed a draft of the constitution.

News of 'Revolt'

The New York Times published an article about the formation of AAPS on page two of the daily newspaper.

AAPS Looked to Europe

AAPS leadership looked abroad to developments in contemporary art and exhibitions as they planned their show for the United States. By August 1912, they decided to dispatch Walt Kuhn to tour Europe. Kuhn's itinerary included major exhibitions and major art capitals.

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