The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Thursday, October 23, 2014


Fernand Léger work brings peace to Russian tiger girl at Bonhams Impressionist and Modern Art sale
Fernand Léger, Composition aux quatre figures, affiche pour l’entente entre les peoples pour le désarmement contre la guerre microbienne. Estimate: £70,000 – 100,000. Photo: Bonhams.
LONDON.- A striking and intense painting by Fernand Léger is one of the highlights of Bonhams Impressionist and Modern Art sale on 5th February 2013. Estimated at £70,000 – 100,000, the painting is a highly personal work that communicates the artist’s strong stand on disarmament and against biological warfare. Painted in a graphic style which lends the figures a statuesque presence, the painting is titled ‘Composition aux quatre figures, affiche pour l’entente entre les peoples pour le désarmement contre la guerre microbienne’.

Léger’s strong internationalism is emphasised by his gift of this painting to famous Russian actress Lyudmila Ivanovna Kasatkina (1925-2012) in 1955. Celebrated worldwide, the movie starlet had played the title role in the film ‘Tiger Girl’ in 1954 to great acclaim. Kasatkina was wildly popular in Russia, and in 2010 was invested into the Order for Merit to the Fatherland by President Medvedev. The painting has not been seen on the market since Léger publically presented it to the actress at a dinner in the Soviet embassy during a visit to Paris.

Léger was deeply concerned about increasing militarism during the 1950s and was a member of the International Peace Movement and the French Communist Party. Prior to 1952, when the work is likely to have been painted, Léger frequently exhibited at peace exhibitions in France and abroad as well as attending the first Peace Congress in Poland, with fellow artists Picasso and Aimé Cesaire. His involvement in peace movements had a significant influence on many of his paintings at this time and had a direct impact on ‘Composition aux quatre figures’.

In 1952 the artist made an important statement on peace at the Vienna Congress, condemning the waste of human life for political ends. It was an emotional speech in which Léger drew on his personal experiences of two World Wars, especially alluding to the horrific scenes he had witnessed in the trenches as a stretcher bearer during the First World War.

In ‘Composition aux quatre figures’ Léger distilled his views on warfare into a striking and emotive image, which also addressed the rising contemporary fear of biological weapons. The group of figures represents the restoration of harmony between different races of the world. It is at once a yearning for world peace and a warning against the perils ahead, if disarmament was not achieved. While the main figures hold a peace treaty between them and a flower symbolising peace, a motionless child lies in the arms of another figure. The viewer is left to question whether the child is an innocent victim of warfare or a symbol of foreboding for the future of humanity.

William O’Reilly, Director of the Impressionist and Modern Art Department said, “Fernand Léger’s striking image is an extraordinary work which deals with issues that were at the very heart of society during this period. The 1950s were a deeply unsettling time with anxieties over the Cold War and the ramifications of the Korean War. Peace movements were just beginning to take shape and Léger was an important figure in the campaign for disarmament.

“As well as the historical context of this painting, it is fascinating to think that it was a personal gift from the artist to a glamorous Russian film star. After half a century in private hands, it is a real pleasure to offer this great work for sale.”





Today's News

January 15, 2013

In new study, Mexican researchers extract intact DNA from Palenque's Red Queen

The Morgan presents new exhibition series showcasing highlights from its collections

20th century emblem of love to highlight Sotheby's Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale

Antiques Roadshow appraiser Colleene Fesko's million-dollar Diego Rivera discovery

Masterworks Sale at Sotheby's New York on 1 February 2013 as part of Old Masters Week

Dr. Janne Sirén will become next Director of Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo

Shard, Olympic cauldron, and a non-stick ketchup bottle: Design Museum 2013 Designs of the Year

New cemetery endangers Egypt's more than 4,500-year-old pharaonic necropolis

Kraftwerk's Robots: Photographs by Peter Boettcher at NRW-Forum Düsseldorf

Fernand Léger work brings peace to Russian tiger girl at Bonhams Impressionist and Modern Art sale

New York City's Grand Central Terminal, the country's most famous train station, marking 100 years

Celebrating man's best friend at Bonhams New York's annual auction Dogs in Show & Field

Labor mural removed by Maine Governor Paul LePage back on display at Maine State Museum

Master Paintings Week and Master Drawings London come together to create London Art Week

Fresh and beautiful, the dolls came out to play at Morphy's $480,000 auction

Dallas tears down ex-home of JFK assassin Oswald

Ground formally broken for new David H. Koch Plaza at The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Israel investing in disputed West Bank sites

Ed Atkins and Naheed Raza present "Tomorrow Never Knows" at Jerwood Visual Arts

New York heart art made with boardwalks damaged by Sandy

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Image of a Christ without a beard, short hair and wearing a toga unearthed in Spain

2.- Giant mosaic unearthed in mysterious tomb in Amphipolis in northern Macedonia

3.- Bonhams sale of 18th century French decorative arts to benefit Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco

4.- Paris flustered by erection of 'sex-toy' sculpture; Paul McCarthy slapped by a passer-by

5.- High art or vile pornography? Marquis de Sade explored in Orsay museum exhibition

6.- 'Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection' opens at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

7.- Greek culture minister says Elgin Marbles return a matter of 'global heritage'

8.- Vandals deflate Paris 'sex-toy' sculpture by American artist Paul McCarthy after outrage

9.- Exhibition at National Gallery in London explores Rembrandt's final years of painting

10.- 'Hans Memling: A Flemish Renaissance' opens at the Scuderie del Quirinale in Rome



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site