HANS BELLMER (1902 - 1975)
Signed Bellmer (lower left)
Pencil on paper
8¼ by 5¼ in. (20.9 by 13.3 cm)
Framed: 16⅞ by 13⅞ in. (42.8 by 35.2 cm)
Executed circa 1955.
This work is in excellent condition. Executed on cream wove paper which has been hinged to a backing board at all four corners. The medium is fresh and well preserved. Some light handling creases and the sheet undulates very slightly. Some evidence of staining from a previous mounting on the upper edge. Otherwise, fine.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.
Galerie Saint Germain, Paris
Gallery of Surrealism, New York
Acquired from the above on April 10, 2005
Andre Pieyre de Mandiargues, Le Trésor cruel de Hans Bellmer, Paris, 1980, illustrated p. 197
The German artist Hans Bellmer began his career as a draughtsman at his own advertising agency. He began producing his famed Surrealist dolls as a rebellion against the authority of his father and the rising fascist state. These biomorphic, purposefully disturbing forms with multiple extremities sometimes appeared headless or missing limbs, and were often presented nude in vaguely sexual poses. When the Nazis declared his work degenerate Bellmer fled to France, where he found artistic camaraderie with the Surrealist circle. Following the War, he abandoned doll making, focusing on photographs, etchings and paintings of figures in sexually explicit positions.