19
19

PROPERTY FROM A FRENCH PRIVATE COLLECTION

Fernand Léger
L'ATELIER DE CHEVREUSE
Estimate
400,000600,000
LOT SOLD. 463,500 EUR
JUMP TO LOT
19

PROPERTY FROM A FRENCH PRIVATE COLLECTION

Fernand Léger
L'ATELIER DE CHEVREUSE
Estimate
400,000600,000
LOT SOLD. 463,500 EUR
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Modernités : de Rodin à Soulages

|
Paris

Fernand Léger
1881 - 1955
L'ATELIER DE CHEVREUSE
signed F.LEGER and dated 53 (towards lower right); signed F.LEGER, titled L'ATELIER DE CHEVREUSE and dated 53 (on the reverse)
oil on canvas
50 x 64,5 cm ; 19 3/4 x 25 3/8 in.
Painted in 1953.
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Provenance

Galerie Louis Carré, Paris
Fine Arts Associates, New York
Frances Gershwin Godowsky, New York
Galerie Boulakia, Paris
Private collection, France

Exhibited

Paris, Galerie Louis Carré, F. Léger Peintures, 1953, no. 23
Hartford, Wadsworth Atheneum, The Music Makers, 1959, no. 28
New York, Fine Arts Associates, Paintings, watercolors, sculpture, 1956-57, no. 33, illustrated in the catalogue

Literature

Pierre Descargues, Fernand Léger, Prague, 1960, no. 56, illustrated n.p.
Georges Bauquier, Irus Hansma & Claude Lefebvre du Prey, Fernand Léger, Catalogue de l'oeuvre peint, 1952-53, Paris, 2013, no. 1542, illustrated p. 138

Catalogue Note

In 1953, the date of the present painting, Fernand Léger regularly stayed in Chevreuse to cure his rheumatism. During one of his stays he noticed near Chevreuse an abandoned building situated in an old dance hall built in 1811 called the Gros Tilleul (The Big Lime Tree) in reference to the majestic tree growing in the courtyard. Leger decided to transform the dance hall into his studio. It was in this large, calm space, surrounded by nature, that Fernand Léger was to paint the major large compositions of the last years of his life. The present painting depicts this place of intense creation which saw the birth of some of the artist's most emblematic paintings, beginning with La Grande Parade and Constructeurs series.

The last years of Léger's life were intensely creative. At the same time as his monumental compositions, the painter returned to the tradition of the still-life that he had already explored many times during the years 1920-1930. He thus developed a new conception of the still-life where everyday objects, - crockery, the painter's tools –acquire a sculptural dimension which magnifies them. To quote Christian's Zervos's words on the subject of Léger's still-life paintings: "There is no object in the physical world, as insignificant as it may seem, that is not capable of awakening in us a series of associations. Each thing can become an object of poetry, because the tiniest part of the world is linked to the rest of the universe. Decoding an object, as humble as it may be, its role in the life of things and the relations it keeps with the world, this is what the art of the poet must be, whether he writes or paints."

Painted two years before his death, L'Atelier de Chevreuse (The Chevreuse Studio) is a synthesis of the different techniques invented by the artist. The objects emerge in all their monumentality, isolated by a black contour characteristic of the painter's style. Fernand Léger also applies here the artistic theories emblematic of the last years of his creation through the dissociation of form from colour. The objects are thus painted in the diminished colours of black and white whilst large stripes of colour are placed on the composition. Léger called this the principle of "outside colour" which embodied the modernity and innovation of his art.

Modernités : de Rodin à Soulages

|
Paris