sticker on wooden frame - Catherine Viviano Gallery, 42 East 57th Street, New York 22, N.Y.; Artist: Kay Sage; Title: Bounded on the West by the Land Under Water; Date: 1946; Medium: oil on canvas; Size: 28 x 26 inches
In pencil on wood frame - Bounded on the West by the Land Under Water, 1946, Kay Sage, Woodbury, Conn. 1963/2.1
Four spare industrial structures rise at different angles into an empty landscape. On the viewer's right, a scaffolding rises from the lower corner and angles to the left. On the left, another scaffold structure runs from the bottom corner along the left edge. In the middle, a building-like structure rises from the bottom of the composition and leans into the visual space, resting on a long rectangular solid that is draped with a cloth.
An expansive, lonely, empty space is occupied only by the spare presence of scaffolds and buildings whose physical structures do not quite make logical sense. The image expresses the melancholy, desolateness, and crazy logic potential in human-made landscapes, like industrial sites and cities.
Multiple color screenprint of an abstracted industrial landscape. In the foreground is a small strip of land, and in the middle ground are buildings of various geometric shapes and sizes. In the background, the rooflines of the buildings start to blend in and emerge from the cloudy sky.
According to Mark Rawlinson's book, Charles Sheeler: Modernism, Precisionism and the Borders of Abstraction, Sheeler's work after 1943 was thought to return to a simplified realism that he pursued in his early career. Sheeler began to consistently rework old themes, a trend that many critics saw as a decline in his talent. During this later period in his work, Sheeler would sift through various images and forms that he already knew and produce new and sometimes awkward compositions through a layering and combining of this past content. The layering of this work by Sheeler demonstrates a possible combining of various architectural forms he had worked with in the past.