Lot Details

Throughout her career, Bourgeois perceived her artwork as a visual autobiography, using sculpture and drawing as a reflective and recuperative tool through which she expressed personal themes of trauma, relationships, sexuality, and femininity. Using a range of symbolic objects and varied materials that challenge notions of scale, balance, weight, and durability, Bourgeois found a way to subtly yet overtly reference her intimate struggles. During the 1960s and 70s, Louise Bourgeois became heavily involved in socialist feminist movements, which was reflected in her art from this time period. In ‘Cunt I’, Bourgeois uses pink alabaster to delicately evoke the female sex organ, conjuring allusions to the female form, psyche, and character. Although carved from the hard stone material, the pink, polished sculpture conveys a softness and beauty that invites curiosity and encourages a connection and consolation in its candor.

Please note that the sculpture recently broke roughly in half in a clean break along a natural vein in the stone so there was no major chip loss. The work was restored to mint condition with no visible signs of restoration. (see treatment report)

Revered as the matriarch of Contemporary art, renowned French-American artist Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) was best known for her sculptures that convey a range of personal and abstract themes, but which always place an emphasis on the relationship between the entity and its surroundings. Finding inspiration from the formative experiences of her childhood and her relationship with her parents, her artwork often conveys feelings of anger, betrayal, and jealousy but in playful manifestations. A sense of eroticism and sexual exploration commonly appeared in motifs such as “cumuls”, round figures that remind of cumulus clouds.

Bourgeois has studied at the Ecole du Louvre, the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, and the Art Student’s League of New York. She has studied with such influential artists as André Devambez, Yves Brayer, and Fernand Leger. In 2007, the Tate Modern, London, England organized a major retrospective of Bourgeois’ work, which travelled to the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA; and the Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC between 2007-2009. Currently, her work is the subject of two solo exhibitions at the Heide Museum of Modern Art, Bulleen, Australia and the Faurschou Foundation, Beijing, China, which will be on view through March, 2013.

Selected Public Collections:
Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, NY)
Museum of Modern Art (New York, NY)
Tate Modern (London, England)
Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris, France)
Museo Nacional Centro de Arte/Reina Sofia (Madrid, Spain)
Uffizi Museum (Florence, Italy)
Kunstmuseum Basel (Basel, Switzerland)
Museum Ludwig (Cologne, Germany)
The State Hermitage Museum (St. Petersburg, Russia)
Mori Art Museum (Tokyo, Japan)

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The seller has recorded the following condition for this lot:
Are there any restorations?
Date: 2012/y
Location: Down the center, perpendicular to the long axis
Notes: The sculpture broke roughly in half in a clean break along a natural vein in the stone so there was no major chip loss. The work was restored to mint condition with no visible signs of restoration.
See attached conservator's report on repair
Degree: Major
Further information unavailable – contact Specialist for details

Definition Key
Image The central image area, composition, or focal point; the area inside the margins/plate marks.
Margin Areas bordering the central image, outside the plate marks, or the perimeter area.
Edge The farthest edge of the object.
Verso The reverse/back of the object.

Minor An existing condition which generally does not involve risk of loss.
Moderate Noticeable damage, increasing in severity and/or size; should be monitored or corrected by a conservator.
Major Distinct, recognizable damage; the stability of the work is questionable and risk is a factor. Requires the attention of a conservator.
Extreme Advanced and severe damage; work is insecure and at great risk.

  • The artist Private Collection, California
  • Pickup Location: California, USA
  • Shipping Dimensions: 6 x 2.5 x 1.5 in. (15.24 x 6.35 x 3.81 cm.)

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