DancerArtist(s)Paul RandArtist NationalityAmerican (North American)Object Creation Date1939Medium & Supportsilkscreen on paperDimensions
38 in x 26 in (96.52 cm x 66.04 cm);36 ¼ in x 24 ¼ in (92.07 cm x 61.6 cm)Credit LineGift of Franc Nunoo-Quarcoo and Maria PhillipsSubject matterDirection Magazine
was an avant garde arts and culture periodical Paul Rand designed for from 1939 through 1943. The magazine did not have a lot of money, so Rand was not paid for his work and, thus, had to resort to cheaper alternatives for his designs. For example, many of the covers employed handwriting and collage rather than type. This particular poster presents the full image of a dancer in the upper left hand corner, and enlarges and fragments the same image across the surface of the poster. Overall, the the fragments compose theform the dancer, but the fragments also seem dissociated from each other because they are not physically attached. Furthermore, Rand cut each fragment into various shapes and symbols; thus, adding another layer of meaning to the isolated forms. For example, the torso is cut into the shape of a heart and the head into the shape of a lightbulb. The torso contains the heart, but the added symbolism of the heart associates the torso with love and openness. Not only is the lightbulb a similar shape to the human head, but also both are associated with innovation and intelligence. A dancer is representative of movement and physical prowess, so the association of the dancer’s body parts with certain character attributes suggests an identity beyond the performance the viewer sees.
EC 2017Physical Description
A black and white image of a dancer appears against a red background in the upper left; fragments of that dancer appear enlarged in other areas of the poster.Primary Object ClassificationPrintCollection AreaModern and ContemporaryRights
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fragments (object portions)