374
374

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE PARISIAN COLLECTION

Tamara de Lempicka
DEUX NUS EN PERSPECTIVE
Estimation
1 000 0001 500 000
Lot. Vendu 815,000 USD (Prix d’adjudication avec commission acheteur)
ACCÉDER AU LOT
374

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE PARISIAN COLLECTION

Tamara de Lempicka
DEUX NUS EN PERSPECTIVE
Estimation
1 000 0001 500 000
Lot. Vendu 815,000 USD (Prix d’adjudication avec commission acheteur)
ACCÉDER AU LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale

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Tamara de Lempicka
1898 - 1980
DEUX NUS EN PERSPECTIVE
Signed T. de Lempicka. (upper right)
Oil on canvas
21 3/4 by 13 in.
55.2 by 33 cm
Painted circa 1925.
Lire le rapport d'état Lire le rapport d'état

Provenance

Alain Blondel, Paris (acquired from the artist)
Acquired from the above in 1990

Exposition

Nantes, Galerie d'Art Decré frères, Exposition, 1928, n.n. 
Hiroshima, Museum of Fine Arts, Tamara de Lempicka, 1997, no. 17, illustrated in the catalogue
Milan, Palazzo Reale, Tamara de Lempicka, 2006-07, no. 7
Mexico City, Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, Tamara de Lempicka, 2009, no. 11
Rome, Complesso del Victoriano, Tamara de Lempicka: The Queen of Modern, 2011, no. 22, illustrated in color in the catalogue 
Paris, Pinacothèque, Tamara de Lempicka: La Reine de l'art déco, 2013, no. 33

Bibliographie

Alain Blondel, Tamara de Lempicka. Catalogue raisonné 1921-1979, Lausanne, 1999, no. B.59, illustrated in color p. 130

Description

Distorted perspectives, monumentally sculptural bodies, an ultra-stylized treatment of light and flesh, a hushed stillness and hieratic glorification of female figures: Deux nus en perspective possesses all the iconic characteristics of the art of Tamara de Lempicka. This picture was painted in 1925, the pivotal year when the artist definitively established her aesthetic system and swiftly took her place in the pantheon of great Art Deco figures.

The very low angle from which the spectator observes the figure of the bather in the foreground exaggerates the proportions of the lower half of her body, as if we are seeing her reflection in a distorting mirror. The second nude on the right could also be the same figure seen from the back. This play of invisible mirrors shows the new sophistication of the paintings by the young Polish artist who was fascinated by the mirages of Modernism and their social and cultural apparitions: motorcars, cinema, fashion and all the hedonistic pleasures to which the liberated women of the Années Folles aspired. At the same time, the iridescence of the blue towel, the complexity of the pose of the left figure, the flash of red lipstick on a deliberately anonymous face and the artist’s manifest delight in arranging of the silhouettes according to the principle of linea serpentina also echo the Mannerist painting of the Italian Renaissance that Lempicka admired on her frequent visits to the Louvre. These effects attest to the great artistic cultivation of a painter who wanted to reveal the modern woman in a pictorial style steeped in the tradition of Bronzino and Rubens. One of her direct sources of inspiration could also have been Leonardo de Vinci’s Leda, housed in the Galerie Borghese.

The giant proportions of the bodies, here pushed to the extreme by Lempicka in keeping with all of her nudes from the late 1920s, emerged as one of the great trends in figurative art of the time period. “This approach was a trend of the time, a derivation of the sculptural woman Picasso had depicted in 1921. In 1925, the ‘Nudes’ presented at various salons all had the same Rubenesque exuberance of flesh, from Derain to Ottman, to mention the most frequently illustrated examples from numerous reviews. Lempicka’s nudes have a singularity that critics did not fail to notice: the distortion of perspective and rendering of complexions is remarkably well achieved” (Tamara de Lempicka, the Queen of Modern (exhibition catalogue), op. cit., p. 160).

Deux nus en perspective
is one of Lempicka’s first confirmed masterpieces, painted several months after her first personal exhibition at the Bottega di Poesia in Milan, a veritable springboard for a career that would soon bring her considerable fame.

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