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Homage to the Romantic Ballet: The Poetics of Joseph Cornell

* Mary Camille Beckman *
Even if Joseph Cornell’s artworks—his signature “shadow box” constructions, his montages (what he termed his two-dimensional collages), and his films—are visual, not literary, Robert Motherwell, abstract expressionist and friend and pen pal of Cornell, claimed that “his true parallels are not to be found among the painters and sculptors, but among our best poets.”