Artist : Fernand LEGER (1881-1955) Landscape with two birds, 1955 Title : Medium : Lithography on Japanese paper Original print monogrammed FL by hand by the artist in pencil at the bottom right and numbered III/VI. This artist's proof was published in addition to the unsigned edition of 120 copies of the frontispice 3 of the tribute book to Paul Eluard "A poem in each book" published by Louis Broder in 1956. The work comes from the album called "Album A", Reprinted from the book in 20 copies. Each album contains, like the book, 16 prints (including this work by Fernand Léger) but they were printed with wide margins and unlike the prints in the book, they are all signed or monogrammed by the artists. The album we have was the property of the publisher Louis BRODER. It stands out from the others because it is enriched in addition to the 16 large-margined illustrations with many other prints collected by the publisher throughout his collaboration with the artists on this book. Type of work : Dimensions : 33 x 52 cm (image 12 x 18 cm) Good, two small almost invisible holes of barely 0.1 mm, probably linked to the printing matrix of the print but which will be completely invisible to the frame. See picture 5. Condition : Genevieve and Jean Paul Kahn collection Provenance :
Fernand Léger and Paul Eluard is the story of a reciprocal admiration which begins with frequenting avant-garde circles in the 1920s. The poet collects the artist's works and the artist does not hesitate to integrate the poet's verses into his works. It is therefore not surprising to find this magnificent lithograph in "a poem in each book" illustrating the "hunted" poem by Paul Eluard. In 1952, ten years after the artist's death, Fernand Leger illustrated the 21 stanzas of the famous poem "Liberté". Expert's comment :
The Album and the Book : Explanatory photo 1: Comparison between Album A offprint of "a poem in each book" printed in 20 copies and the book "a poem in each book" printed in 120 copies. Explanatory photo 2: Album A offprint of 20 copies having belonged to the publisher Louis Broder contained in a gray canvas box with a label stuck on the back and the first cover. Explanatory photo 3: Proof of printing of Album A which indicates the maximum number of copies of prints contained in total in the 20 albums as well as the names of the artists. It is annotated in red pencil "Editor's copy B" because it belonged to Louis Broder. Explanatory photo 4: Original print signed and printed with wide margins by Pablo Picasso, contained in album A Explanatory photo 5: Original print signed and printed with large margins by Max Ernst, contained in album A Explanatory photo 6: Book "a poem in each book" printed in 120 copies, containing the 16 prints unsigned by the artists (signatures on the proof of printing of the book) Explanatory photo 7: Print by Pablo Picasso on double page, unsigned contained in the book "a poem in each book" Explanatory photo 8: Print by Max Ernst unsigned contained in the book "a poem in each book"
Biography of the artist : Fernand Léger, born February 4, 1881, in Argentan is a French painter, representative of the cubist movement. He studied art in Paris, at the School of Decorative Arts. His early works were influenced by Impressionism, but after discovering the work of Paul Cézanne, he moved towards Cubism. In 1907, he moved to La Ruche where he met many painters, including Paul Cézanne, Braque and Picasso. His first major exhibition took place in Chicago in 1935. In 1945, he joined the Communist Party, of which he would become, with Picasso, the star artist. He will defend ideas such as new realism in Art. Later, he will direct the painting schools of Montrouge and Montmartre, which have trained many artists such as Louise Bourgeois or Serge Gainsbourg.
History of the book and the album : We advise you to read our blog "THE ALBUM OF LOUIS BRODER: A LEGENDARY PORTFOLIO".
About Paul ELUARD : We advise you to read our blog "PAUL ELUARD: THE CHOSEN ONE OF THE ART".