REFERENCE: Brunhammer 146
Created in 1954, this original low relief glazed terracotta plaque has a detailed pencil inscription that has been handwritten on the reverse: ‘Visage aux 2 mains | Edition d’apres | l’œuvre | originale | de | F. Leger [signature] | N=10/250 | N. Leger’; we do not believe the edition was completed. Another example of this work is featured in the collection at the Musée National Fernand Léger, Biot.
Having been continuously inspired by his wife, Nadia, this work represents her visage which is partly hidden and slightly framed by the manner of her hands and the positioning of the brilliant bands of color which bisect the composition. It is an intriguing and engaging ceramic piece – its low relief of the black line is slightly raised to create a stunning effect.
According to Y. Brunhammer (2005), “The first low reliefs of 1950-52 were inspired by paintings and still lifes painted in 1936, 1937 and 1938 in strongly contrasted colours, in which the object and colour had replaced the ‘subject’ inherited from the Renaissance. These were the years that Léger was exploring mural decoration with his architect friends Robert Mallet-Steves, Le Corbusier, Charlotte Perriand, and later Paul Nelson, who had moved to Paris, for the Hanging House in 1939. His ceramic work was due to an unusual affinity with Roland Brice, who had moved to Biot in 1949 to work full-time on pottery” (132).
ABOUT THE FRAMING:
Conservation framed with archival materials and museum quality, this work is set in a modern black shadowbox frame with a square profile. The tone of the moulding and matte finish accentuates the bright hues and contrasting colors in this piece. Completed with black, linen-wrapped liners.