Lot 21
  • 21

JUAN GRIS | Siphon et verre

Estimate
500,000 - 700,000 GBP
bidding is closed

Description

  • Juan Gris
  • Siphon et verre
  • coloured crayons, pencil and gouache on paper

Provenance

Estate of the artist (Josette Gris & Georges Gonzales-Gris; until 1965)

Galerie Louise Leiris, Paris (acquired in 1965)

Saidenberg Gallery, New York (1965-66)

Heinz Berggruen, Paris (1966-82)

Private Collection (acquired in 1982) 

Sale: Sotheby's, London, Looking Closely: A Private Collection, 10th February 2011, lot 4

Purchased at the above sale by the father of the present owner

Exhibited

Paris, Galerie Louise Leiris, Juan Gris: dessins et gouaches 1910-1927, 1965, no. 18, illustrated in the catalogue; illustrated in colour on the catalogue cover

Los Angeles, The Los Angeles County Museum of Art & New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Cubist Epoch, 1970-71, no. 135, illustrated in the catalogue

Paris, Orangerie des Tuileries, Juan Gris, 1974, no. 128, illustrated in the catalogue

London, The Tate Gallery, The Essential Cubism, 1907-1920, 1983, no. 87, illustrated in the catalogue

Martigny, Fondation Pierre Gianadda, De Picasso à Barceló. Les artistes espagnols, 2003, no. 3, illustrated in colour in the catalogue

Literature

Zeichnungen und Collagen des Kubismus: Picasso, Braque, Gris (exhibition catalogue), Kunsthalle, Bielefeld, 1979, no. 225, illustrated

Catalogue Note

Gris created his Siphon et verre in the midst of World War I, just when Cubism was at the high point of its 'synthetic' pictorial reconstruction. No longer satisfied with collage, Gris translated all of his constructive ideas through his draughtsmanship, relying upon convincing pictorial recreations of patterns and texture to convey the assembled appearance of papier collés. Over the course of the 1910s, several artists would attempt to adopt the perspectival and compositional devices that the Cubist founders Braque and Picasso had started using at the end of the first decade, but few would be as highly regarded for their talent and vision as Gris. As a result, Gris was considered one of the leaders of the Cubist movement, along with Picasso, Braque and Léger. Recalling this period and her association with the Cubists, Gertrude Stein identified Gris as an artist of foremost importance among these figures: 'The only real Cubism is that of Picasso and Juan Gris. Picasso created it and Juan Gris permeated it with his clarity and exaltation' (G. Stein, The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas, New York, 1933, p. 111).

Probably executed in April-May 1916, Siphon et verre is closely related to the oil version Le Siphon (fig. 1), painted in May of that year. Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler, Gris' dealer and the founder of the Galerie Louise Leiris, provided the following analysis of Gris' particular Cubist style: '[T]he emblems which Juan Gris invented 'signified' the whole of the object which he meant to represent. All the details are not present. The emblems are not comprehensible without previous visual experiences... The picture contains not the forms which have been collected in the visual memory of the painter, but new forms, forms which differ from those of the 'real' objects we meet within the visible world, forms which are truly emblems and which only become objects in the perception of the spectator' (D.-H. Kahnweiler, Juan Gris: His Life and Work, London, 1947, p. 90). 

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