Artists who work with found materials are frequently described as making something out of nothing. This characterization is based on the estimation that the salvaged materials are ordinary, their value transitory or forgotten, and their existence ephemeral until the artist has intervened and provided them with a new reality or reason for being. Cornell's interest in the ordinary and fleeting was so elevated that he named it the 'metaphysique d'ephemera,' suggesting that literal things can create an elaborate and subtle form of magic. - Lynda Roscoe Hartigan, Joseph Cornell: Shadowplay... Eterniday, p. 23*
Where Does the Sun Go at Night? (circa 1963)
*Text and images are courtesy of Artnet's Artist Works Catalogues. See here, where it says:
"This body of Modern
and Contemporary artists' sites brings insight into the depth and scope of
extraordinary artists' oeuvres, and it serves as a research tool for students,
faculty, museum curators, researchers, dealers and collectors.