Signed Picasso (lower right)
Executed in Spring 1914.
Galerie Kahnweiler, Paris (sold: 4th Kahnweiler sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, May 7-8, 1923, lot 331)
Jean Lurçat, Paris
Mme Marthe Hennebert, Paris (by 1942, probably acquired from the above)
Galerie Jeanne Bucher, Paris
Acquired from the above on November 19, 1952
Ann Arbor, University of Michigan, 20th Century Painting and Sculpture From the Winston Collection, 1955, no. 53
Detroit Institute of Arts; Virginia Museum of Art; San Francisco Museum of Art; MiIlwaukee Art Institute, Collecting modern art : paintings, sculpture and drawings from the collection of Mr. and Mrs. Harry Lewis Winston, 1957-58, no. 83
Minneapolis, Walker Art Center, 1958
Detroit Institute of Arts, The Varied Works of Picasso, 1962
Richmond, Virginia Museum, 1964
Detroit Institute of Arts, Selections from the Lydia & Harry L. Winston Collection, 1972-73
New York, The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Futurism: a modern focus: the Lydia and Harry Lewis Winston Collection, Dr. and Mrs. Barnett Malbin, 1973-74, no. 81
Christian Zervos, Pablo Picasso, oeuvres de 1912 à 1917, vol. 2**, Paris, 1961, no. 453, illustrated pl. 212
Pierre Daix and Joan Rosselet, Le Cubisme de Picasso, Neuchâtel, 1979, no. 659, illustrated p. 316
Malcolm Gee, Dealers, Critics, and Colectors of Modern Painting, New York & London, 1981, Appendix F, listed p. 34
Josep Palau i Fabre, Picasso Cubism, 1907-1917, New York, 1990, no. 1117, illustrated p. 383
Of all the manifestations of Picasso’s art throughout his long career, his Cubist compositions are among his most inventive and aesthetically original. Picasso, along with Georges Braque, pioneered this artistic movement and introduced the avant-garde to new levels of pictorial abstraction. Still-lifes were usually the favored subjects of these depictions, and never before had this age-old theme been interpreted with such a radical approach. Picasso experimented with the deconstruction and reconstruction of form and the manipulation of space in these compositions, exposing the physical properties of the objects he was depicting. Verre sur une table, executed in the spring of 1914, is a wonderful rendition of this theme. In this picture, Picasso presents the objects on the table as they would appear from several different vantage points, providing a spectacle that would not otherwise be possible in a two-dimensional representation.
Over the course of the 1910s, Picasso’s Cubism developed from fractured, highly abstract “analytical” depictions of form to more legible “synthetic” compositions that incorporated elements of collage. Verre sur une table exemplifies the tenets of this later phase of Cubism.
The sticker 331 that appears at the bottom of this composition was placed on the collage when it was sold at the Kahnweiler sale in 1923. The work bears this sticker in the reproduction in the catalogue raisonné. Palau i Fabre states that the Kahnweiler sale catalogue mentioned a signature on the verso, not the recto. He concludes that signature on the recto must have been added after the Kahnweiler sale. The verso signature cannot presently be seen due to the framing.
One of the first owners of the picture was the artist Jean Lurçat, whose Cubist inspired paintings were later made into tapestries by the Hennebert workshops in Toulon. It is most likely that Mme Hennebert acquired this work directly from Lurçat.
Lydia Winston Malbin, who acquired this work in 1952, was the daughter of the famed Detroit-based architect, Albert Kahn. She began collecting Cubist and Futurist art in the 1930s with the advice of Alfred Stieglitz and Alfred H. Barr, Jr. In May 1990, Sotheby's sold a large portion of her original collection, and the event became known as one of the single greatest sales in modern auction history.
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