Fernand Leger, Le Puits (The Well), 1951
|Artist:||Fernand Leger (1881 - 1955)|
|Title:||Le Puits (The Well), 1951|
|Medium:||Original Color Lithograph|
|Image Size:||17 1/4 in x 13 1/16 in (43.8 cm x 33.3 cm)|
|Sheet Size:||25 5/8 in x 19 11/16 in (65 cm x 50 cm)|
|Framed Size:||39 1/2 in x 35 in (100.3 cm x 88.9 cm)|
|Edition:||Numbered from the edition of 75 in pencil in the lower left; printed by Mourlot, Paris and published by Galerie Louise Leiris, Paris.|
|Signature:||This work is hand-signed by Fernand Léger (Argentan, 1881- Gif-sur-Yvette, 1955) in ink in the lower right.|
|Condition:||This work is in great condition, with bright fresh colors|
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Item # 3024
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Historical Description of this artwork
A glistening well rests amidst a landscape of cactus-like shrubbery. In this work, Léger once more combines elements of nature with manmade machinery. The well consists of a silver bucket chained to a wheel that, when spun, can be used as leverage for raising and lowering the bucket to retrieve water. The stark white/silver color of this manmade contraption pops out amidst the chartreuse green and burnt sienna background. Léger here appears to comment on man’s cleverness and his ability to manipulate nature for his own well-being. This well does not seem terribly intrusive or destructive amidst the natural landscape but rather fits in harmoniously, resting across a tree with the inhabitant’s house nestled off into the distance.
Created in 1951, this work was printed by Mourlot, Paris and published by Galerie Louise Leiris, Paris. This work is hand signed by Fernand Léger (Argentan, 1881- Gif-sur-Yvette, 1955) in ink in the lower right margin and numbered from the edition of 75 in pencil in the lower left margin.
Catalogue Raisonné & COA:
This work is fully documented and referenced in the below catalogue raisonnés and texts (copies will be enclosed as added documentation with the invoices that will accompany the final sale of the work).
1. Saphire, Lawrence, Fernand Léger, The Complete Graphic Work, 1978, listed as cat no 110 on pg. 174-175, another example from the same edition illustrated.
2. A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany this work.
About the Framing:
This work is framed to museum-grade, conservation standards, presented in a complimentary moulding and finished with silk-wrapped mats and optical grade Plexiglas.
What Do I Get With My Purchase?
The Certificate of Authenticity accompanies this work, guaranteeing its authenticity for as long as you own it.
All catalogue raisonné and historical documentation is included with your purchase.
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Fernand Leger's unique Cubism contains its own populist vocabulary. The French artist's monumental figures speak to everyone; his strong color work and graphic sensibility characterize his prints, lithographs, paintings, sculptures and art.
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Fernand Leger Biography
French painter and designer. From c.1909 Fernand Leger participated in the Cubist movement. He is generally considered one of its major masters but his curvilinear and tubular forms (he was for a time called a ‘tubist‘) contrasted with the fragmented forms preferred by Picasso and Braque. The First World War, during which he was gassed whilst serving as a stretcher-bearer, had a profound effect on Leger. His contact with men of different social classes and different walks of life came as a revelation: ‘I was abruptly thrust into a reality which was both blinding and new,’ he said. Henceforward he made it his ambition to create an art which should be accessible to all ranks of modem society.
In 1920 he met Le Corbusier and Ozenfant and in the early 1920s he was associated with their Purist movement. Fernand Leger’s paintings were static, with the precise and polished facture of machinery, and he had a fondness for including representations of mechanical parts.During the late 1920s and 1930s he also painted single objects isolated in space and sometimes blown up to gigantic size, In the inter-war years he expanded his range beyond easel painting, with murals and designs for the theatre and cinema. He was also busy as a teacher, notably at his own school, the Academie de I’Art Contemporain, and he traveled widely, making three visits to the USA in the 1930s. The connections he had made there stood him in good stead when he lived in America. During the Second World War he lived in the USA, teaching at Yale University, and at Mills College, California. Acrobats and cyclists were favorite subjects in his paintings of this time. From his return to France in 1945 his painting reflected more prominentlyhis political interest in the working classes. But its static, monumental style remained, with flat, unmodulated colours, heavy black contours, and a continuing concern with the contrast between cylindrical and rectilinear forms. in his later career Fernand Leger worked much on large decorative commissions, notably the windows and tapestries for the church at Audincourt (1951). Many honours came to him late in life, and a museum dedicated to him opened at Biot in France in 1957. In the catalogue of the exhibition Leger and Purist Paris’ (Tate Gallery, London, 1970), John Golding wrote of Leger: ‘No other major twentieth-century artist was to react to, and to reflect, such a wide range of artistic currents and movements . . . And yet he was to remain supremely independent as an artistic personality. Never at any moment in his career could he be described as a follower … But his originality lay basically in his ability to adapt the ideas and to a certain extent even the visual discoveries of others to his own ends.’ He saw the poetic value that lies in the clear delineation of everyday objects, the in trinsic beauty of modem machinery and the things which are mass-produced by machinery, and he favoured proletarian subjects, depicting them with the same clarity and precision as the themes taken from machine culture.