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LOT 0019

Robert Delaunay (French, 1885–1941) - Portrait de Madame Jacques Heim

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Robert Delaunay (French, 1885–1941) - Portrait de Madame Jacques Heim

Oil on canvas
50 3/4 x 37 3/4 in.
Executed in 1928.

Provenance

The Artist.
Acquired directly from the above in 1929.
Collection of Mr. Jacques Heim, Paris.
Christie's, London, sale of November 28, 1989, lot 323.
Private Collection.
Sotheby's, London, sale of June 30, 1987, lot 65.
Acquired directly from the above sale.
The Collection of Sidney Rothberg, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Literature

Guy Habasque, Robert Delaunay: Du Cubisme à l'Art Abstrait, S.E.V.P.E.N., Paris, 1957, p. 292, no. 261 (not illustrated, dated as circa 1926-1927).

Lot Essay
We wish to thank Mr. Richard Riss for confirming the authenticity of the present Lot, which will come accompanied with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by Mr. Riss and M. Delaunay.

Madame Jacques Heim was the wife of the French costume and fashion designer Jacques Heim, for whom Sonia Delaunay, artist and wife of Robert Delaunay, worked. In this large scale three-quarter length portrait executed in 1928, the interplay of color and rhythmic forms produces a spiritual, transcendent quality which fits in squarely with the precepts associated with ‘Orphism,’ an art movement (and another art ‘ism’ in the pantheon of early 20th century avant-garde art movements) which was related to, but distinctly different from, Cubism.

Leading artists associated with the Orphism movement– including Robert and Sonia Delaunay, Franz Marc, Francis Picabia, Marcel Duchamp, and Fernand Le?ger–emphasized color and rhythm to beget a heightened sense of emotional perception and simultaneous states of being. There is, therefore, a kind of metaphysical component in Orphism compared to Cubism’s more analytical concerns, as artists sought to capture multiple perspectives via fragmentation.

The French poet Guillaume Apollinaire is credited with coining the term ‘Orphism’ in the decade prior to Robert Delaunay’s portrait of Madame Jacques Heim. Derived from the poet and singer Orpheus in Greek mythology, the name makes reference to the inherent musical qualities, chromatic scales, flux, and simultaneity conveyed by its practitioners. Robert Delaunay’s highly personal approach to composition and color harmonies have also been labeled in art movement parlance as “Simultanism,” wherein recognizable subjects are distilled down into a mosaic of flat, complementary light and dark translucent color planes gleaned from various vantage points simultaneously. Simultanism’s origins have been connected with writings on color theory proposed by the French chemist Michel Euge?ne Chevreul (1786-1889) concerning how the eye perceives juxtaposed hues, as well as the writings of the French philosopher Henri-Louis Bergson (1859-1941) regarding what he termed ‘process philosophy.’ Said Delaunay, “Simultaneity in light is harmony, the rhythm of colors which creates the Vision of Man.”

Robert Delaunay’s highly personal approach to composition and color harmonies have also been labeled in art movement parlance as “Simultanism,” wherein recognizable subjects are distilled down into a mosaic of flat, complementary light and dark translucent color planes gleaned from various vantage points simultaneously. Simultanism’s origins have been connected with writings on color theory proposed by the French chemist Michel Euge?ne Chevreul (1786-1889) concerning how the eye perceives juxtaposed hues, as well as the writings of the French philosopher Henri-Louis Bergson (1859-1941) regarding what he termed ‘process philosophy.’ Said Delaunay, “Simultaneity in light is harmony, the rhythm of colors which creates the Vision of Man.”

Select Simultanism and Orphism effects can arguably still be seen in several Delaunay paintings of Madame Heim which were executed in the 1920s, including the present work, specifically in the concentric circles behind the sitter, and in the colorful fabric (or sash) draped over her right arm across her torso. Madame Heim’s fabric may also, parenthetically, serve as a nod from Robert Delaunay to his wife, Sonia, a major modernist painter in her own right who was an important, early female designer of fabric assemblages, and who designed a ‘Simultaneous dress’ in 1913, prompting Robert Delaunay to deem her “a living sculpture.”

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USA, Philadelphia, PA
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[ translate ]

Robert Delaunay (French, 1885–1941) - Portrait de Madame Jacques Heim

Oil on canvas
50 3/4 x 37 3/4 in.
Executed in 1928.

Provenance

The Artist.
Acquired directly from the above in 1929.
Collection of Mr. Jacques Heim, Paris.
Christie's, London, sale of November 28, 1989, lot 323.
Private Collection.
Sotheby's, London, sale of June 30, 1987, lot 65.
Acquired directly from the above sale.
The Collection of Sidney Rothberg, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Literature

Guy Habasque, Robert Delaunay: Du Cubisme à l'Art Abstrait, S.E.V.P.E.N., Paris, 1957, p. 292, no. 261 (not illustrated, dated as circa 1926-1927).

Lot Essay
We wish to thank Mr. Richard Riss for confirming the authenticity of the present Lot, which will come accompanied with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by Mr. Riss and M. Delaunay.

Madame Jacques Heim was the wife of the French costume and fashion designer Jacques Heim, for whom Sonia Delaunay, artist and wife of Robert Delaunay, worked. In this large scale three-quarter length portrait executed in 1928, the interplay of color and rhythmic forms produces a spiritual, transcendent quality which fits in squarely with the precepts associated with ‘Orphism,’ an art movement (and another art ‘ism’ in the pantheon of early 20th century avant-garde art movements) which was related to, but distinctly different from, Cubism.

Leading artists associated with the Orphism movement– including Robert and Sonia Delaunay, Franz Marc, Francis Picabia, Marcel Duchamp, and Fernand Le?ger–emphasized color and rhythm to beget a heightened sense of emotional perception and simultaneous states of being. There is, therefore, a kind of metaphysical component in Orphism compared to Cubism’s more analytical concerns, as artists sought to capture multiple perspectives via fragmentation.

The French poet Guillaume Apollinaire is credited with coining the term ‘Orphism’ in the decade prior to Robert Delaunay’s portrait of Madame Jacques Heim. Derived from the poet and singer Orpheus in Greek mythology, the name makes reference to the inherent musical qualities, chromatic scales, flux, and simultaneity conveyed by its practitioners. Robert Delaunay’s highly personal approach to composition and color harmonies have also been labeled in art movement parlance as “Simultanism,” wherein recognizable subjects are distilled down into a mosaic of flat, complementary light and dark translucent color planes gleaned from various vantage points simultaneously. Simultanism’s origins have been connected with writings on color theory proposed by the French chemist Michel Euge?ne Chevreul (1786-1889) concerning how the eye perceives juxtaposed hues, as well as the writings of the French philosopher Henri-Louis Bergson (1859-1941) regarding what he termed ‘process philosophy.’ Said Delaunay, “Simultaneity in light is harmony, the rhythm of colors which creates the Vision of Man.”

Robert Delaunay’s highly personal approach to composition and color harmonies have also been labeled in art movement parlance as “Simultanism,” wherein recognizable subjects are distilled down into a mosaic of flat, complementary light and dark translucent color planes gleaned from various vantage points simultaneously. Simultanism’s origins have been connected with writings on color theory proposed by the French chemist Michel Euge?ne Chevreul (1786-1889) concerning how the eye perceives juxtaposed hues, as well as the writings of the French philosopher Henri-Louis Bergson (1859-1941) regarding what he termed ‘process philosophy.’ Said Delaunay, “Simultaneity in light is harmony, the rhythm of colors which creates the Vision of Man.”

Select Simultanism and Orphism effects can arguably still be seen in several Delaunay paintings of Madame Heim which were executed in the 1920s, including the present work, specifically in the concentric circles behind the sitter, and in the colorful fabric (or sash) draped over her right arm across her torso. Madame Heim’s fabric may also, parenthetically, serve as a nod from Robert Delaunay to his wife, Sonia, a major modernist painter in her own right who was an important, early female designer of fabric assemblages, and who designed a ‘Simultaneous dress’ in 1913, prompting Robert Delaunay to deem her “a living sculpture.”

[ translate ]
Sale price
Unlock
Estimate
Unlock
Reserve
Unlock
Time, Location
27 Feb 2024
USA, Philadelphia, PA
Auction House
Unlock