description of Bridge by Joseph Stella

This four-foot-tall, two-and-a-half foot wide oil painting places us inside a streamlined suspension bridge, looking from one end to the other. The perfectly centered perspective and the bridge’s structure make the painting nearly symmetrical. Thick, smooth, cables swoop in from the lower edges of the canvas as they arch up toward the center. Off of the cables hang thin black wires that stretch down toward the bottom of the painting. On either side of the center are gothic archways, through which shiny silver towers and a blue sky can be found. Framing the bottom of the painting is a horizontal black bar, adorned with a row of seven glowing circles. A matching circle, which is split in two by the vertical line between the archways, hangs two-thirds of the way up the canvas.

Joseph Stella, Bridge, 1936
Joseph Stella, Bridge, 1936; oil on canvas, 50 1/8 in. x 30 1/8 in. (127.32 cm x 76.52 cm); Collection SFMOMA, The United States General Services Administration, formerly Federal Works Agency, Works Projects Administration, allocated to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

Artwork Info

Artwork title
Bridge
Artist name
Joseph Stella
Date created
1936
Classification
painting
Medium
oil on canvas
Dimensions
50 1/8 in. x 30 1/8 in. (127.32 cm x 76.52 cm)
Date acquired
1943
Credit
Collection SFMOMA
The United States General Services Administration, formerly Federal Works Agency, Works Projects Administration, allocated to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Permanent URL
https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/3760.43
Artwork status
On view on floor 2 as part of Open Ended: Painting and Sculpture Since 1900

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