Search Results for 'henri matisse'

Henri Matisse, Graphite Sketch, Nude Females

Graphite study on paper, two females by Henri Matisse, c. 1910

14 x 10 inches

35.6 x 25.4 cm


Henri Matisse, Lithograph, La Danse, 1938

Henri Matisse The Dance

Original color lithograph of Matisse’s famous painting of the same name, published by Revue Verve in 1938 in an edition of approximately 1200.   There are two linoleum cuts printed on the  verso.

21 x 14 inches

53.3 x 35.6 cm




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Nina Diaz, Willem deKooning’s Girlfriend.

1926 was a remarkably important year.

In the entertainment world, Norma Jeane Mortensen, who later changed her name to Marilyn Monroe was born and “The Son of the Sheik”, Rudolph Valentina’s last movie debuted just before he died at age 31.

In sports, Gertrude “Trudy” Ederle became the first woman to swim the English Channel and the St. Louis Cardinals won their first of 11 World Series Championships by beating the New York Yankees in 7 games.

And in the world of art, 22 year-old Willem DeKooning ( 1904 – 1997) was a stowaway aboard a British freighter from his hometown of Rotterdam, Netherlands to America, bringing a dream of adventure, fast women, movie stars, and a chance to become a commercial artist. Never could the man who left school at age 12 imagine one of his future paintings, Interchange -created in 1955, would eventually sell for $300 million, the most money ever paid for a work of art.

After landing in Newport News, VA, he worked his way to New Jersey and then to New York, where he arrived early the following year. Shortly thereafter, he met a vaudeville entertainer Virginia “Nina” Diaz, who became his first American girlfriend and moved into a small studio with him on West Forty-forth Street. He worked wherever he found work, as a carpenter, house painter, and commercial artist, for which he’d apprenticed for back in Rotterdam.

In his spare time, he painted, but rarely kept any of his early works, repainting over most, since he couldn’t afford new canvases. About the same time, he went to an exhibition of paintings by Henri Matisse at The Pierre Matisse Gallery, Matisse’s youngest son’s gallery of contemporary and modern art in Manhattan. DeKooning was so inspired by Matisse’s vibrant colors, especially cobalt-violet, he immediately went to a hardware store and purchased a tube of violet oil paint to experiment.

His romantic relationship with Nina lasted until 1935, but was rekindled repeatedly over next the next few years.

In 1938, DeKooning met his future wife, Elaine, who became a recognized artist on her own and was, ironically, already a friend of Nina. By this time, Willem, along with Jackson Pollock, were the recognized leaders of the Abstract Impressionism Movement in New York, which, partially due to the political situation in Europecent , quietly supplanted Paris as the new center for art in the world.

This painting was acquired from the estate of Elaine DeKooning. It is a portrait of a woman wearing a hat, reminiscent of the style of the 20’s. The portrait, itself, has an overall look and feel similar to some of Matisse’s portraits from 1915 -1920. The hat is cropped off at the top. Vibrant colors are used, including violet blue on the inside of the collar. Pencil lines are visible through the paint. And the painting is very dimensionally flat.

Numerous paper stickers applied at different times in both pencil and ink refer to the subject as, “Nina Diaz, Bill’s first American girlfriend”. All are affixed to the frame on the back. One is marked “By: ?” That is scratched over and marked “self?” in pencil. The stretcher is marked “Collection of Elaine DeKooning”

Bill and Elaine never divorced and she died in 1989. I spoke with an important sculptor friend of theirs who lived with Elaine several times in the 50s, Anita Huffington. When I asked for her thoughts on the painting’s artist, she relied, “What woman would keep a painting of her husband’s first girlfriend for more than 50 years? I will tell you this, though, Elaine never got rid of anything Bill did.”

So, who did it? Bill? Elaine? Nina? Perhaps we’ll never know, but at least it is a remarkable story and interesting mystery.

Georges Rouault, Etching and Aquatint, Plate LVI from Miserere, 1928

Georges Roualt Aquatint

In 1893, Frenchman Ambroise Vollard (1866-1939) opened an avant-garde art gallery in Paris’ influential Rue Lafitte. His first exhibition, in 1895, included nearly 150 paintings by Paul Cezanne and was followed by exhibitions of Edward Manet, Paul Gauguin, and Vincent Van Gogh. He went on to hold Pablo Picasso’s first exhibition in 1901 as well as Henri Matisse’s in 1904. He was also the sole representative and employer for Georges Rouault (1871-1958).

Rouault’s early apprenticeship in stained glass, which employed heavy borders to frame brightly colored images, was readily adapted into his own style which was exhibited throughout his lifetime. Along with Matisse and Andre Derain, he helped form the short lived Fauvist movement, which used wild strokes of vivid, bold colors to express their work.

In 1916, Vollard commissioned him to produce a series of prints known as Miserere et Guerre (Misery and War) in two volumes of 50 prints each. The poet Andre Suares (1866-1948) was to have produced the text, however the project was never completed when Suares quit the project and advised Rouault to do the same. At the time, Vollard rarely offered any of Rouault’s work to the public and kept most of his work to himself thereby limiting Rouault’s exposure.

The unprecedented horrors of World War I, along with Rouault’s compassion for the underprivileged and marginalized, were combined with his profound Catholic faith to produce this monumental work. The images were originally drawn as sketches in ink before they were painted and subsequently photographed and transferred onto copper plates for printing. Rouault used almost every known intaglio (typically etching or engraving) technique up to 15 times on each image before he was satisfied each piece was technically as good as the rest. By 1928, 65 images were completed.

All of the images were printed in an addition of 450 prints in 1928, however the prints were never released by Vollard. When Vollard died in an automobile crass in 1939, Rouault sued the estate for possession of his artworks. At the time of his death, Vollard had more than 10,000 paintings from various artists in his estate which he was trying to hide from the German Army.

Rouault finally won in court and 58 of his images, printed 20 years earlier, were finally published by Editions de I’Etoile in Paris. The edition in its entirety is unquestionably the most monumental religious artistic accomplishment of the 20th century.

This original aquatint with drypoint, scraper, roulette, and burnisher, titled, “In these dark times of vainglory and unbelief, Our Lady of the Ends of the Earth keeps watch.”, is one of an edition of 450 prints and is signed in the plate and dated 1927. There are no known hand signed prints.

22.8 x 14.8 inches

is plate LVI of Rouault’s monumental two part series, Miserere et Guerre, an etching with aquatint.  Titled,  Our Lady of the Ends of the Earth keeps watch.  This series was  never completed in its original intent, but is considered one of the most important graphic works of the 20th century.  The only printing, done 20 years after the plates were produced, was produced by Editions de I’Etoile in Paris and was limited to 450 images.

22.8 x 14.8 inches

58 x 37.6 cm



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Artists by Name


Appel, Karl

Aust, Carol

Bale, Charles Thomas

Bassano, Francesco

Beihong, Xu

Berchem, Nicholaes

Blatas, Arbit

Braque, Georges

Buffet, Guy

Calder, Alexander

Cezanne, Paul

Chagall, Marc

Chikubosai II

Cocteau, Jean

Col, David

Culter, Richard Vincent

Dali, Salvador

de Goya, Francisco

Denny, Gideon J.

Duboy, Paul

Eder, Gyula


Estivalet, Elizabeth

Fisher, HM


Hall, Robin

Huffington, Anita


Jenkins, George Washington

Kalf, Willem

Kleitsch, Joseph

Kuang, Ting Shao

Kusakabe, Kimbei


Loates, Bernard

Matisse, Henri

Miro, Joan

Motonobu, Kano


Patri, Giacomo

Picasso, Pablo

Renoir, Auguste

Rivera, Diego

Rouault, Georges

Shaoyou, Bao

Shinn, Everett


Storr, Paul

Ting, Walasse

Toulouse-Lautrec, Henri de

Tobey, Mark

von Schneidau, Christian

Whistler, James

Wilms, Joseph


Yoshida, Hiroshi

Yuichi, Monden

Zuniga, Francisco

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