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Stuart Davis
Memo
1956
oil
36 x 28 1/4 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Sara Roby Foundation



Stuart Davis devised a kind of artistic shorthand for this "memo" about Gloucester Harbor. Ship masts are briefly noted in white line on black; the foreground is reduced to simple color planes. The cropped letters of the word "ANY" at the bottom left refer to Davis's theory that any subject can be transformed into art.