- Emil Filla
- Seated Woman
- signed and dated Emil Filla 48 lower right
- oil on canvas
- 146 by 98cm., 57½ by 38½in.
Purchased from the above by the present owner in 1993
Filla’s love of Cubism was enduring and while his style evolved, cubist elements are evident in his paintings throughout his career. Seated Woman portrays an exceptionally self-confident sitter, looking straight at the viewer. She dominates the composition in a strikingly relaxed pose, leaving only little room for a chair in the background. The painting is characterised by rich colours, strong expressionistic outlines and shadows, which are more dynamic and flowing than many works from the early days of Cubism.
Comparing Filla’s Seated Woman with Picasso’s Dora Maar au chat (fig. 1), both painted in the 1940s, the similarities are striking. Both women command the picture plane, Dora sitting in a wooden chair and Filla’s inconnue posing in front of one. Their bodies are sharply outlined and modelled in shades of green, grey and blue. Dora wears an elaborate, chic outfit that highlights the cubist treatment of the figure, as well as a decorated hat. She is accompanied by a little black cat, the face of which has been scratched out from the wet paint. Filla’s model wears nothing but red lipstick and carefully applied nail varnish. She may not be alone either, as a red rose on top of the chair behind her seems to suggest a visitor.
A photograph of the present work by František Krejčí is recorded in the Filla archive.