Joseph Cornell began to make collages of engravings in 1929, without any art training; these were included in the first Surrealist group exhibition in the USA at the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, in 1935. His work was included in the exhibition Fantastic Art, Dada, Surrealism at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1936. He had his first solo exhibition at the Julien Levy Gallery in 1939. Cornell made series of boxed assemblages that reflected his various interests: the Soap Bubble Sets, the Medici Slot Machine series, the Pink Palace series, the Hotel series, the Observatory series, and the Space Object Boxes.
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