Modern and Contemporary Art
Portrait of Moïse KislingMade in France, Europe
Chaim Soutine, French (born Lithuania), 1893 - 1943
Oil on cardboard on Masonite© Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris
39 x 27 1/4inches (99.1 x 69.2cm)
Framed: 44 x 33 x 3 1/4 inches (111.8 x 83.8 x 8.3 cm)
Currently not on view
1943-101-1Gift of Arthur Wiesenberger, 1943
LabelChaim Soutine moved to Paris in 1913 and worked in relative obscurity until 1923, when the noted American art collector Dr. Albert C. Barnes purchased fifty-two of his expressionist paintings for his foundation in Merion, Pennsylvania. Barnes was attracted to his thickly painted portraits and turbulent landscape paintings, and his unprecedented acquisition of almost the entire contents of the artist's studio meant that Soutine suddenly achieved fame and financial security after almost a decade of poverty and struggle for recognition. This portrait of the Polish-born artist Moïse Kisling is an incisive likeness of his close friend, although the energetic paint handling imbues the work with a startling expressionist force.
With Paul Guillaume (1891-1934), Paris, to 1934 ; his widow Domenica Guillaume, Paris; with Valentine Gallery (Valentine Dudensing), New York, by February 1936 . Possibly with M. Knoedler & Co., New York? . Arthur Wiesenberger, Philadelphia, by 1940, to 1943 ; gift to PMA, 1943.
1. See letter of September 23, 1997 from Pierre Georgel, Director, Musée de l'Orangerie, in curatorial file, stating that their records indicate that the painting was at one time in Guillaume's possession or passed through his hands. Guillaume bought at least some of his Soutines directly from the artist. The Musée de l'Orangerie owns the Jean Walter and Paul Guillaume Collection.
2. The painting was included in the Valentine Gallery's 1936 exhibition, "Paintings by Soutine," no. 18. According to the Valentine Gallery records (originals in Museum of Modern Art, NY, archives), seven of the works in the exhibition came from Madame Guillaume -- apparently purchased from her, as a total price is given (communication from Julia May Boddewyn, Oct. 21, 2002). See also Tuchman, Soutine catalogue raisonné, 1993, vol. 1, no. 97, and vol. 2, nos. 26, 52, and 67.
3. The back of the painting has a rectangular label reading "No. 32018 / Picture", which resembles other labels possibly belonging to Knoedler & Co.
4. The date is from Maurice Tuchman, et al., Chaim Soutine (1893-1943): Catalogue Raisonné/ Werkverzeichnis, vol. 2, Cologne, 1993, no. 36, p. 570 (without reference).
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