138
138

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE COLLECTION

Paul Cézanne
FEMME ALLAITANT SON ENFANT
JUMP TO LOT
138

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE COLLECTION

Paul Cézanne
FEMME ALLAITANT SON ENFANT
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale

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London

Paul Cézanne
1839 - 1906
FEMME ALLAITANT SON ENFANT
oil on canvas
23.2 by 23.2cm., 9 1/8 by 9 1/8 in.
Painted circa 1872. 
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Provenance

Henri Rouart, Paris (sale: Galerie Manzi-Joyant, Paris, 11th December 1912, lot 93)
Joseph 'Jos' Hessel, Paris
Auguste Pellerin, Paris
Jean-Victor Pellerin, Paris & Sweden (by descent from the above)
Professor D. Carlstrom, Sweden (acquired from the above in 1947; sale: Sotheby's, London, 4th April 1989, lot 30)
Purchased at the above sale by the present owner

Exhibited

Lausanne, Fondation de l'Hermitage, L'Impressionnisme dans Les Collections Romandes, 1984, no. 103, illustrated in the catalogue

Literature

Arsène Alexandre, La Collection Henri Rouart, Paris, 1912, p. 70 (titled as Femme et enfant)
Charles Louis Borgmeyer, The Master Impressionists, Chicago, 1913, illustrated p. 276 (titled as Woman and Child)
Evelyn Marie Stuart, 'Cézanne and his place in Impressionism,' Fine Arts Journal 35, no. 5, New York, May 1917, illustrated p. 330 (titled as Woman and Child)
Élie Faure, 'Toujours Cézanne', Amour de l'Art, December 1920, illustrated p. 269 (titled as Maternité)
Atzouji Zeisho, Paul Cézanne, Tokyo, 1921, illustrated fig. 32
Georges Riviére, Le Maître Paul Cézanne, Paris, 1923, illustrated p. 142 (titled as Femme et Enfant and dated 1873)
Élie Faure, P. Cézanne, Paris, 1926, illustrated pl. 3 (titled as Maternité)
Eugenio d'Ors, Paul Cézanne, Paris, 1930, New York, illustrated p. 37
Georges Riviére, Cézanne, La Peintre solitaire, Paris, 1933 and 1942, illustrated p. 29
Eugenio d'Ors, Paul Cézanne, New York, 1936, illustrated pl. 50
John Rewald, 'A propos du catalogue raisonné de l'œuvre de Paul Cézanne et de la chronologie de cette œuvre', La Renaissance 20, March-April 1937, illustrated p. 54
Gualtieri di San Lazzaro, Paul Cézanne, Paris, 1938, illustrated fig. 50 (cropped)  
André Leclerc, Cézanne, New York, 1948, n.n., illustrated p. 9
Paul Gachet, Deux Amis des Impressionnistes - Le Dr. Gachet et Murer, Paris, 1956, illustrated fig. 21
Sandra Orienti, Tout l'œuvre peint de Cézanne, Paris, 1975, no. 248, illustrated p. 97
Lionello Venturi, Cézanne, Son Art - son Œuvre, San Francisco, 1989, vols. I & II, no. 233, ilustrated pl. 63
John Rewald, Walter Feilchenfeldt & Jayne Warman, The Paintings of Paul Cézanne, A Catalogue raisonné, London, 1996, vols. I & II, no. 216, illustrated p. 72
Madame Cézanne (exhibition catalogue), Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2014, mentioned p. 4, listed p. 192, illustrated in colour p. 23
Walter Feilchenfeldt, Jayne Warman & David Nash, The Paintings of Paul Cézanne, an online catalogue raisonné, www.cezannecatalogue.com, no. 618

Catalogue Note

This wonderfully intimate portrait returns to the market amidst a flurry of re-appraisal for Cézanne’s paintings of his companion Hortense Fiquet: this important series is currently the subject of a major exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum in New York titled Madame Cézanne. Of the twenty-nine known paintings of Fiquet, the present work and one other, whose whereabouts remains unknown, are the earliest: both date from 1872, the year of Paul fils’ birth and a period of escape for Cézanne and his young companion. In 1870, fearful of angering his banker father and losing his allowance, Cézanne and Fiquet had fled Paris for the more remote rural surroundings of Auvers-sur-Oise, just a few miles from Pontoise where Pissarro was based at the time. Another sixteen years of risky subterfuge would ensue before Louis-Auguste Cézanne (the artist's father) finally found out about the existence of his son's companion and child.

Cézanne’s later disenchantment with his wife is well documented and indisputable. Looking at his portraits of her as a whole, critics have repeatedly cited the mainly sad and vacant images of Hortense as reflective of the emotional distance that famously built up between the couple. It is against this context of subsequent apathy, that this early and romantic work becomes all the more compelling. In contrast to the later more detached portraits, here we are caught in the frame of a close and private family moment; the baby Paul breast-feeding, his mother, only twenty-two years old, gently sleeping on her own shoulder, and Cézanne himself close at hand, making up the family trio. Knowing that Cézanne was living in secret, young, and with his first child, lends this work an extraordinarily poignant sense of romance and intimacy. It is painted with an energetic and gestural handling and a rich palette of dark ochre and dashed greens, blues and blacks: Rewald proposes that it ‘may very well have been one of the first pictures Cézanne painted inside after his ‘conversion’ to Impressionism; as such it strikes a new note in his work’ (J. Rewald, The Paintings of Paul Cézanne, A Catalogue raisonné, London, 1996, p. 158).

The provenance of this work is also of note: it was initially in the collection of Henri Rouart, industrialist, engineer, amateur pupil of Millet, and great collector. As well as several works by Cézanne, Rouart brought together pictures by Manet, Degas, Monet, Pissarro, Renoir, Daumier and over fifty painting by Corot. In his breadth and understanding, few could surpass this sympathetic and conoisseurial collector, and it was at the famous Rouart sale, upon his death in 1912, that the present work first changed hands. Rewald tells us this painting ‘was estimated at 3,000 francs but reached 10,000, at which price Jos Hessel purchased it, possibly for Auguste Pellerin’ (ibid., p. 158). There was great international interest in the Rouart auction, where Degas’s Danseuses à la barre sold to Louisine Havemeyer for the then unheard of price of 478,000 francs ($95,700). Hessel and Havemeyer were in good company, for the buyer of three of the five Cézannes on offer was Dr Albert Barnes, amongst the very earliest purchases for what was to become the Barnes Foundation. From one famed collector to another: Auguste Pellerin was the second owner of this work and overseer of the greatest collection of Cézanne pictures ever assembled, amassing close to 150 works over a quarter of a century.

The present work is one of very few portraits of Hortense to remain in private hands: twenty-one of the twenty-nine known oil paintings of her are in museum collections.

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