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Saul Steinberg: Outsider Extraordinaire

Judith Brodie, curator and head, department of modern prints and drawings, National Gallery of Art. In this lecture held on January 14, 2018, Judith Brodie presents the special installation of 18 drawings, two photographs, and an assortment of small sculptures by Saul Steinberg (1914–1999). This installation is part of an initiative—dating from the reopening of the East Building galleries in 2016—to include selected modern drawings, prints, and photographs as part of the permanent collection display. Revered by millions for his outstanding covers for the New Yorker magazine, Steinberg was an extraordinary draftsman whose line, according to the art critic Harold Rosenberg, was “delectable in itself.” Whether making independent works or ones for publication, Steinberg brought a mordant wit and a sharp eye to all his art, creating works that disarm, enchant, and electrify. On view from September 12, 2017, through May 18, 2018, Saul Steinberg spans the years 1945 to 1984 and includes a wide range of subjects and types: from World War II air raids to New York hipsters, from collages incorporating real stationery to bogus documents enhanced with fake signatures and seals.