10 March 2017
Pablo Picasso, 1881-1973
Inès et son Enfant. Inès and her Child. 1947.
Original chalk and pen-drawn lithograph in black ink. January 1947. Signed in pencil. Numbered 19 from the edition of 50. (There were also 18 proof impressions retained by Picasso). Drawn from life in Picasso's studio at the Rue des Grands Augustins and worked onto the litho stone, retouched and completed, and the edition printed, at the Atelier Mourlot, 1947.
Ref: Mourlot - Picasso Lithographs no 60.
Bloch – Picasso L’Oeuvre Gravée no 414
Hatje-Rau - Picasso Lithographs no 155.
Provenance: Private Collection, Switzerland
Beautiful impression with the subtle variations of line tone superbly effective. On pale cream wove Arches paper. Excellent condition. Full margins. Sheet: 654 x 502mm. Image virtually to full sheet size: 635 x 390mm.
Inès Sassier became Picasso's housekeeper at the Rue des Grands Augustins in Paris in 1937. Picasso had met her the year before at Mougins on the introduction of Dora Maar’s sister. She was never Picasso's lover or mistress, but she was one of the most important women in his life in the period from the late 1930's to 1967. She was housekeeper, nanny, cook, model and confidante - described by Maya, Picasso's daughter, as 'our fairy godmother' - not least for her ability to find and cook food during the deprivations of wartime. Inès married in Paris in the early 1940's and this is a study of her with her child.
The emotional bonding between mother and child in this study of Inès resonated very strongly with Picasso in the late 1940’s, echoing his own domestic emotions and his very close relationship with Paloma and Claude, his children with Françoise. Inès became the inspiration for many other works on the maternity theme at this date.
‘Inès et son Enfant’ was drawn in very early 1947. In the early summer of 1946 he had worked extensively at the Mourlot studio on a series of lithograph portraits of Françoise but he returned to the South for the later part of the year. The Christmas period was spent at Antibes but immediately it was over Picasso had a strong urge to return to work on lithographs. By the 20th January he was deeply involved again at the Atelier Mourlot on a theme of a young owl and an arm chair. Then on the 28/29th of January he drew this study of Inès on litho paper at home and went directly to Mourlot’s to develop it with overworking on the stone.
Picasso made two versions of this composition – the first, as here, in the pure spontaneous line of drawing from life, and a second reworking the theme, away from Inès, at the studio.
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