MINA LOY (1882–1966)

Surreal Scene, n.d.
Collage on painted peach background
Jean Farley Levy Estate

If Julien Levy claimed Stieglitz and Duchamp as his godfathers in the art world, then the poet-artist Mina Loy was his secret godmother, teacher, and muse. Levy met the English expatriate in Paris in 1927, and married her daughter, Joella, the same year. Mina Loy propounded modernist values that became guiding principles for Levy’s gallery even before she began acting as his Paris representative. Levy gave Loy her first solo show in the United States in 1933. He corresponded with his mother-in-law throughout her life, long after his divorce from Joella. On April 3, 1931, he wrote to her: “I have found a beautiful location, size about 20 feet x 50 feet, with a good show window, very bon marché because of the depression, and I am on the point of signing the lease.”