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(after) Fernand Léger
Fernand Leger School Prints Colorful Modernist King of Hearts Drawing Lithograph

c.1949

$1,800

About

Bright vibrant blue, orange, red, yellow, green lithograph in color. This is signed in the plate and dated. Leger's abstract drawing lithograph was drawn by the artist direct on to plastic plates newly developed by Cowell's of Ipswich, and proofed under his supervision. The original edition called for 3000. I do not know how many were actually printed. The sheer logistics of the operation, the costly effort of distribution to over 4000 schools, finally ended the great adventure of the School Prints scheme. The expensive endeavor peaked in 1949 with the magnificent European series, made possible by the plastic portable plates, which, in addition to Moore, featured Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Fernand Leger, Raoul Dufy and Georges Braque. Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (French 1881 – 1955) was a French painter, sculptor, and filmmaker. In his early works he created a personal form of cubism which he gradually modified into a more figurative, populist style. His boldly simplified treatment of modern subject matter has caused him to be regarded as a forerunner of pop art. Léger was born in Argentan, Orne, Lower Normandy, where his father raised cattle. Fernand Léger initially trained as an architect from 1897 to 1899, before moving in 1900 to Paris, where he supported himself as an architectural draftsman. After military service in Versailles, Yvelines, in 1902–1903, he enrolled at the School of Decorative Arts after his application to the École des Beaux-Arts was rejected. He nevertheless attended the Beaux-Arts as a non-enrolled student, spending what he described as "three empty and useless years" studying with Gérôme and others, while also studying at the Académie Julian. He began to work seriously as a painter only at the age of 25. At this point his work showed the influence of impressionism, as seen in Le Jardin de ma mère (My Mother's Garden) of 1905, one of the few paintings from this period that he did not later destroy. A new emphasis on drawing and geometry appeared in Léger's work after he saw the Cézanne retrospective at the Salon d'Automne in 1907. In 1909 he moved to Montparnasse and met Alexander Archipenko, Jacques Lipchitz, Marc Chagall, Joseph Csaky and Robert Delaunay. In 1910 he exhibited at the Salon d'Automne in the same room (salle VIII) as Jean Metzinger and Henri Le Fauconnier. In his major painting of this period, Nudes in the Forest, Léger displays a personal form of Cubism that his critics termed "Tubism" for its emphasis on cylindrical forms. In 1911 the hanging committee of the Salon des Indépendants placed together the painters identified as 'Cubists'. Metzinger, Albert Gleizes, Le Fauconnier, Delaunay and Léger were responsible for revealing Cubism to the general public for the first time as an organized group. The following year he again exhibited at the Salon d'Automne and Indépendants with the Cubists, and joined with several artists, including Le Fauconnier, Metzinger, Gleizes, Francis Picabia and the Duchamp brothers, Jacques Villon, Raymond Duchamp-Villon and Marcel Duchamp to form the Puteaux Group—also called the Section d'Or (The Golden Section). Léger's paintings, from then until 1914, became increasingly abstract. Their tubular, conical, and cubed forms are laconically rendered in rough patches of primary colors plus green, black and white, as seen in the series of paintings with the title Contrasting Forms. Léger made no use of the collage technique pioneered by Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso.As an enthusiast of the modern, Léger was greatly attracted to cinema, and for a time he considered giving up painting for filmmaking. In 1924, in collaboration with Dudley Murphy, George Antheil, and Man Ray, Léger produced and directed the iconic and Futurism-influenced film Ballet Mécanique (Mechanical Ballet). Neither abstract nor narrative, it is a series of images of a woman's lips and teeth, close-up shots of ordinary objects, and repeated images of human activities and machines in rhythmic movement. In collaboration with Amédée Ozenfant he established a free school where he taught from 1924, with Alexandra Exter and Marie Laurencin. He produced the first of his "mural paintings", influenced by Le Corbusier's theories. His varied projects included book illustrations, murals, stained-glass windows, mosaics, polychrome ceramic sculptures, and set and costume designs. He was active as a teacher for many years, first at the Académie Vassilieff in Paris, then in 1931 at the Sorbonne, and then developing his own Académie Fernand Léger, which was in Paris, then at the Yale School of Art and Architecture (1938–1939), Mills College Art Gallery in Oakland, California during 1940–1945, before he returned to France. Among his many pupils were Hananiah Harari, Asger Jorn, Michael Loew, Beverly Pepper, Marcel Mouly, Louise Bourgeois, Tsuguharu Foujita, Sam Francis, Serge Gainsbourg, Hans Hartung, Florence Henri, Asger Jorn, William Klein, Maryan, Jules Olitski, Erik Olson, and Richard Stankiewicz. In 1952, a pair of Léger murals was installed in the General Assembly Hall of the United Nations headquarters in New York City. In 1960, the Musée Fernand Légerwas opened in Biot, Alpes-Maritimes, France. In May 2008, his painting Étude pour la femme en bleu (1912–13) sold for $39,241,000 (hammer price with buyer's premium) United States dollars.

Details

  • Creator
  • Creation Year
    c.1949
  • Dimensions
    Height: 25.25 in. (64.14 cm)Width: 35.5 in. (90.17 cm)
  • Medium
  • Movement & Style
  • Period
  • Condition
    the piece is mounted to another paper for support, as issued. minor wear. the lithograph is in good condition with minor age toning commensurate with age. please see photos.
  • Gallery Location
    Bal Harbour, FL
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU3824185912

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    Rates vary by destination and complexity. We recommend this shipping type based on item size, type and fragility.
    Ships From: Bal Harbour, FL
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 3 days of delivery.

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