I feel ya on that Florine. ;)
This is week 3 of my study of Florine Stettheimer. I love the portrait below and I had it saved on Pinterest and didn’t even know it was Florine’s. :)
Florine and Marcel Duchamp were good friends and he appears in several of her works. He (along with Georgia O’Keeffe) often encouraged Florine to show her work.
Florine’s sister Carrie Stettheimer created a 2 story, 12 room dollhouse from 1916 to 1935 which is now in the Museum of the City of New York. Probably the most notable feature of the dollhouse is its art collection, miniature paintings and sculptures made by Florine and her artist friends like Marcel Duchamp, George Bellows, and William Zorach.
Florine’s sisters Ettie in 1918 and Carrie in 1932. Ettie was a writer, the conversationalist of the family, witty and charming. It’s because of Ettie that the world knows about Florine. Carrie managed the household, planned menus, was the hostess, etc. And she created that amazing dollhouse.
The Stettheimer sisters “declared men impossible but worthy of flirtation. They wore pants, smoked cigarettes, disdaned marriage, romance, and children, and were constantly surrounded by artists and writers who were drawn to their gatherings.”
I read somewhere that Florine’s piece A Model, 1915, was the first for a female and that didn’t sound quite right to me. I remembered reading otherwise in Broad Strokes and it looks like Paula Modersohn-Becker is recognized as the first female nude self portrait in 1906. Florine’s is from 1915. And then just because I like to look for connections among the artists I study, here’s one of Georgia O’Keeffe’s from 1917, one of Frida Kahlo’s from 1944, and my fave, Alice Neel’s from 1980.
In her lifetime, Florine was best known for her work on Four Saints in Three Acts, 1934, an opera: the libretto by Gertrude Stein, the music by Virgil Thompson, the choreography by Frederick Ashton and the scenery and costumes by Florine Stettheimer. She made no sketches but conceived the costumes and sets in 3D with handmade figurines and miniature stages. Notable is her use of materials: cellophane, feathers, lace. It was a big success for the artist at the age of 63.