323
323

PROPERTY OF A DISTINGUISHED COLLECTOR

Félix Labisse
HOMMAGE À GILLES DE RAIS
ACCÉDER AU LOT
323

PROPERTY OF A DISTINGUISHED COLLECTOR

Félix Labisse
HOMMAGE À GILLES DE RAIS
ACCÉDER AU LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale

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Félix Labisse
1905 - 1982
HOMMAGE À GILLES DE RAIS
signed Labisse (lower left); signed Labisse, dated 1957 and titled on the reverse
oil on canvas
130.5 by 162.8cm., 51 3/8 by 64in.
Painted in 1957.
Lire le rapport d'état Lire le rapport d'état

Provenance

Galerie Isy Brachot, Brussels
Sale: Hôtel Drouot, Paris, 29th June 1999, lot 34
Private Collection (acquired in 2003; sale: Christie's, South Kensington, 22nd June 2012, lot 127)
Purchased at the above sale by the present owner

Exposition

Paris, Musée d'art moderne de la Ville de Paris, 13ème Salon de mai, 1957
Paris, Galerie de France, Labisse, 1957
Knokke, Casino de Knokke, Labisse, Rétrospective, 1960
Paris, Musée Galliéra, Labisse, 1962
Charleroi, Palais des Beaux-Arts, Labisse, Rétrospective, 1969
Culan, Château de Culan, L'Art fantastique et le surréalisme du XVe au XXe siècle, 1969
Knokke-Le Zoute, Galerie Isy Brachot, Labisse, 1973
Brussels, Galerie Isy Brachot, Les 400 coups du Diable, 1975
Ostende, Kursaal d'Ostende, Labisse, Rétrospective, 50 ans de peinture, 1979
Paris, Galerie Isy Brachot, Félix Labisse, Peintures de 1952 à 1981, 1982
Douai, Musée de la Chartreuse, Labisse, Rétrospective 1927-1980, 1986
Cordes-sur-Ciel, Maison Fonpeyrouse, Hommage à Félix Labisse, 2005
Douai, Musée de la Chartreuse & Carcassone, Musée des beaux-arts, Félix Labisse, Rétrospective du centenaire de sa naissance, 2005-06
Portland, Maine, Portland Museum of Art, 2012-15 (on loan)

Bibliographie

La Lanterne, Brussels, 1960
Patrick Waldberg, Félix Labisse, Brussels, 1970, illustrated p. 131
Isy Brachot, Labisse, Catalogue de l'œuvre peint, 1927-1979, Brussels, 1979, no. 299, illustrated p. 162

Description

A painter, illustrator and stage designer, Félix Labisse was of Flemish and Polish descent and worked both in France and Belgium. A self-taught artist, he was associated with the Surrealist movement and was strongly influenced by James Ensor, whom he met in 1922. In his work, Labisse renders his poetic reveries in a Surrealist style, using a technique of smoothly painted and strongly outlined colours to make them appear almost as a form of hallucination before the viewer. In particular, he specialised in images of women, who haunt his pictures like mythical goddesses. In 1928, he co-founded the Ciné Club in Ostend, which disseminated avant-garde films by Man Ray, Carl Dreyer and Fritz Lang, and he made a film of his own, La Mort de Vénus. He settled in Paris in 1932, and exhibited in group shows devoted to Surrealism with his friends including Robert Desnos, Jean-Louis Barrault, Antonin Artaud, Jacques Prévert, André Masson, Max Ernst, Raymond Queneau and André Breton, although he was never an official member of the Surrealist group.

The source of inspiration for this work was the figure of Gilles de Montmorency-Laval, Baron de Rais (1405-1440), a knight and Lord of Brittany, Anjou and Poitou. A leader in the French army and a companion-in-arms of Joan of Arc, Gilles de Rais was heir to a vast fortune and forged a distinguished military career. He was, however, later denounced by his family as a spendthrift with a penchant for alchemy and the occult. In 1440, Gilles de Rais was sentenced to death for murder and heresy although the debate regarding his guilt or innocence has long since raged.

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