There was a trial held in NY City back in 1927. Edward Steichen, an American photographer,bought this sculpture from the artist herself while she was living in France. He imported the piece to the US where normally the law does not require customs duty on original works of art as long as they are declared. But when the customs official saw this piece he denied it. He said it was not art! No matter how much Steichen protested, the piece was admitted into the US under the catagory of "Kitchen Utensils and Hospital Supplies". So because it was not declared as art, Steichen was now charged $600 in order to import the sculpture.
After time and with the help of an American sculpture and patron of the arts, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, Steichen appealed the ruling. The trial brought a lot of publicity and had a lot of people questioning if the piece was in fact a bird or just metal.
Finally the court decided in Steichen's favor and the bird was declared a work of art after all.
Did you miss Part one? You can still read it here..
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