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American Radiator Building

A painting of the American Radiator Building at night, in an abstract style that emphasizes geometric shapes and flat colors. The building is a tall black rectangle punctuated by lit windows. The top of the building is a stylized crown-like structure silhouetted against a larger white structure of similar shape illuminated by bright white lights. Beams of light break the dark blue sky. A plume of smoke rises from a rooftop on the right, turning green as it intersects a light beam. A red neon light advertisement on the left spells out the name Stieglitz.

Georgia O’Keeffe, 1887–1986
Radiator Building—Night, New York, 1927
Oil on canvas
48" × 30"
Alfred Stieglitz Collection
Co-owned by Fisk University, Nashville, Tennessee and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas
Photography by Edward C. Robison III

Prominent painter Georgia O’Keeffe noticed the lighting from her apartment on the 30th floor of the nearby Shelton Hotel on Lexington Avenue and 49th Street, where she lived with her husband, the photographer Alfred Stieglitz from 1925–1936.

In a painting she depicted the building’s luminous crown, floodlights shooting up into the night sky, some catching a neighbor’s heating fumes, and a red neon light advertising her publicity-shy husband.