Abraham Walkowitz (1880-1965)
At the Opera (formerly In the Opera), 1908
Oil on canvas, 18 1/8 x 14 3/16 in. (46 x 36 cm)
Julie Gottlieb

The subject
At the Opera dates to 1908, the year Walkowitz returned to New York from Paris. The subject recalls Impressionist works by Mary Cassatt and Edgar Degas, but the elongated forms reflect more contemporary trends.

At the Armory Show
Walkowitz was well represented at the Armory Show, lending five oils, five drawings, one monotype print, and one watercolor. At the Opera hung in Gallery E with American works by Charles Sheeler, Joseph Stella, Julian Alden Weir, and the exhibition’s co-organizers Walt Kuhn and Arthur B. Davies.

Little attention
Like most of the American Modernists, Walkowitz’s contribution was overshadowed by the contemporary European works on view and did not receive much attention in the press. The critic for the New York American wrote that two of his oils, Anticoli Corrado and A Bit of Venice, “illustrate the subtle refinement of his color sense,” but did not mention At the Opera at all. [1]

[1] [Charles H. Caffin], “American Section Still Reflects the Naturalistic Motive,” New York American, March 10, 1913, 7.

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