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Accident and Design

May 08 through June 10, 1945

Accident and Design

artist(s)Constantin Brâncuși, Jacob Epstein, John Flannagan, Paul Gauguin, Gaston Lachaise, Jacques Lipchitz, Pablo Picasso

Robert Goldwater was asked by the MAS to select “primitive” works to be shown alongside and compared to modern artwork (The MAS, 37).

"It is because the primitive arts contain such possibilities of transformation and suggestion that they have fascinated the modern artist. Back in the days of the purist-cubist tradition, artists and critics united in praising the pure design achievement of the aboriginal artists and the child; the three-dimensional vision of the African sculptor; the genius for over-all pattern of the Congo cloth weaver and the Oceanic tapa-bark painter; the child's flair for contrasts of bold and vivid color. These are important attainments which we still admire . . . They were not the cause of his [contemporary artists] freedom from ninteenth century naturalism, but when he was ready they helped him to attain it" (Robert Goldwater, Accident and Design).

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