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American Paintings and Sculpture
Photo credit: Yale University Art Gallery
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Artist: Kay Sage, American, 1898–1963

The Answer Is No


Oil on canvas

39 × 32 in. (99.1 × 81.3 cm)
Bequest of Alexandra I. Darrow, B.F.A. 1933, in memory of Judson S. Darrow
The “no” answer is to Kay Sage’s continuance of oil painting. The blank canvases and easels wall off any possible passage through the tortuous and impossible maze. Scaffolding, which for Sage had represented creation in other earlier works, now signifies a blocking, a kind of futility.
Made in Waterbury, Connecticut, United States
On view
20th century

Jonathan Stuhlman and Stephen Robeson Miller, Double Solitaire: The Surreal Worlds of Kay Sage and Yves Tanguy, exh. cat. (Katonah, N.Y.: Katonah Museum of Art, 2011), 97, no. 43, ill.

Mark Mitchell et al., The Art of American Still Life: Audubon to Warhol, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2015), 240, fig. 113.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.