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Joseph Stella
Metropolitan Port
about 1935–37
oil
35 1/8 x 29 1/4 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Transfer from General Services Administration



In awe of modern engineering, Joseph Stella felt "as if on the threshold of a new religion or in the presence of a new DIVINITY" when he stood on the Brooklyn Bridge. Metropolitan Port—one of many paintings inspired by this immigrant artist's New York experiences—captures the bridge's dramatic cable structure, illuminated here with theatrical footlights.