Juan Gris (José Victoriano González Pérez), Spanish, 1887 - 1927
Carved and painted plasterDimensions:
21 1/4 x 13 x 10 inches (54 x 33 x 25.4 cm)Curatorial Department:
Modern and Contemporary ArtObject Location:
Currently not on viewAccession Number:
A. E. Gallatin Collection, 1952
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This standing figure is the only sculpture that Juan Gris ever made. The polychrome sculpture is balanced on a protruding wedge-shaped slab that reinforces the strong vertical axis and volume of the torso. The body was carefully constructed of curved and sharply angled forms whose proportions were built up according to the rules of the Golden Section; it was then painted in muted colors once the plaster had dried. In the autumn of 1917, Gris encountered technical problems with the work and completed it with the help of the Cubist sculptor Jacques Lipchitz, whom he had met and befriended the previous year.
Léonce Rosenberg, Galerie de L'Effort Moderne, Paris; private collection, Paris; sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, March 26, 1928, lot 96 ; with Galerie Simon, Paris (stock no. 10402, photo no. 5730), probably 1928 and certainly by 1931 ; sold to A. E. Gallatin, New York, summer 1934 ; bequest to PMA, 1952.
1. Sale listed in Cooper, Juan Gris: catalogue raisonné, Paris, 1977, v. 2, p. 442-443, but not verified.
2. Exhibited at the 1928 Galerie Simon Gris retrospective, no collection listed, so presumably it was purchased by Kahnweiler from the 1928 auction. The 1931 edition of Carl Einstein's Die Kunst des 20. Jahrhunderts lists the owner as Galerie Simon. A Galerie Simon label was formerly on the bottom of sculpture (see note in curatorial file).
3. See letters to Gallatin from Rosenberg, August 20, 1934 and Kahnweiler, August 17 and 20, 1934, concerning the provenance of the sculpture (Gallatin Papers, New York Historical Society, microfilm; copies in curatorial file).