- Pablo Picasso
- Le Fou
- inscribed Picasso
- height: 41cm.
- 16 1/8 in.
Lucien Vollard, Paris (acquired from the above)
Private Collection, Switzerland (acquired from the above in 1948)
Sale: Galerie Kornfeld, Bern, 23rd June 2000, lot 115
Galerie Beyeler, Basel (purchased at the above sale)
Acquired from the above by the late owner in 2007
Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler, Les Sculptures de Picasso, Paris, 1948, no. 2, another cast illustrated p. 2 (titled Harlequin)
Guilio Carlo Argan, Scultura di Picasso, Venice, 1953, another cast illustrated pl. IV
Wilhelm Boeck & Jaime Sabartés, Picasso, New York, 1955, no. 32, another cast illustrated p. 460
Christian Zervos, Pablo Picasso, œuvres de 1895 à 1906, Paris, 1957, vol. I, no. 322, another cast illustrated pl. 148
Roland Penrose, Picasso, Amsterdam, 1961, another cast illustrated pl. 2
Roland Penrose, Picasso Sculpture, New York, 1965, another cast illustrated, pl. 2
Gjon Mili, Picasso's Third Dimension, New York, 1970, detail of another cast illustrated pp. 82-83
Werner Spies, Picasso Sculpture with a Complete Catalogue, London, 1971, no. 4, another cast illustrated pp. 17-18
Frank Elgar & Robert Maillard, Picasso, New York, 1972, another cast illustrated p. 35
Jean Leymarie, Picasso, The Artist of the Century, Lausanne, 1972, another cast illustrated p. 26
Roland Penrose & John Golding (eds.), Picasso, New York, 1973, no. 206, another cast illustrated p. 126
Ron Johnson, The Early Sculpture of Picasso, 1901-1914, New York, 1976, no. 5, another cast illustrated p. 165
Werner Spies, Picasso, Das plastische Werk, Berlin, 1983, no. 4, another cast illustrated pp. 326 & 372
Marie-Laure Besnard-Bernadac, Michele Richet & Helene Seckel, The Picasso Museum: Paintings, Papiers collés, Picture reliefs, Sculptures, and Ceramics, New York, 1985, no. 272, another cast illustrated p. 150
Werner Spies, Picasso: The Sculptures. Catalogue Raisonné of the Sculptures, Stuttgart, 2000, no. 4, another cast illustrated p. 346
The Picasso Project (ed.), Picasso's Paintings, Watercolors, Drawings and Sculpture. The Rose Period, 1905-1906, San Francisco, 2012, no. 1905-527, another cast illustrated p. 146
Picasso Sculpture (exhibition catalogue), The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2015, another cast illustrated in a photograph p. 40; wax original illustrated p. 40 & another cast illustrated p. 297
In his biography of the artist Roland Penrose described the origin of Le Fou (or The Jester): ‘The Jester, the most accomplished of these (early) bronzes, has a rugged solidity due to its rough modelling which catches the light and spreads it over the form. The face is sensitive and the jester's cap and crown spring from the head like a flower. It was begun late one evening after returning home from the circus with Max Jacob. The clay rapidly took on the appearance of his friend, but next day he continued to work on it and only the lower part of the face retained the likeness. The jester's cap was added as the head changed its personality’ (R. Penrose, Picasso His Life and Work, Berkeley & Los Angeles, 1981, p. 116).
An unknown number of casts, probably not more than fifteen, were made by Picasso's dealer Ambroise Vollard from 1905 until the dealer's death in 1939. These 'Vollard' casts vary in patination and definition but are of uniform size. Una E. Johnson writes ‘It is doubtful that Vollard himself knew the total issue of each bronze. His practice was to keep in his shop an example of each of the bronzes. When a collector or dealer wished to obtain one, Vollard would order a cast made’ (U. E. Johnson, op. cit., 1977, p. 41).