c1933 Picasso Vollard Suite XXI Signed Study Print


A very unusual edition of the images from Pablo Picasso’s famous Vollard Suite.

The print is slightly smaller than the originals and is annotated in pencil and bears Picasso’s signature, also in pencil. There is a red gallery stamp on the bottom left, with ‘SOMMET DE LA TOUR EIFFEL’ (Summit of the Eiffel Tower). The image is titled ‘Le sculpteur et son modele devant une sculpture representant un combat entre un taureau et deux chevaux -1933’ and is numbered XXI. On the reverse is written in ink ‘Paris 30 Mars XXXIII – Eau forte - 1933 – ‘Vollard Suite’ (in pencil) Reference Number: XXI GALERIE 5 D’ART – RUE LA FAYETTE – PARIS’. No amount of research seems to reveal any information about these prints or the Art Gallery, but they are of good quality and highly decorative. The print has been tastefully mounted, framed and glazed. Condition is good.

It is a representation of one of 100 images from the famous Vollard Suite. Picasso created the etching plate that was used to print this etching in 1933. The suite of 100 images was named for Picasso's art dealer and publisher, Ambroise Vollard (1867-1939). Vollard was responsible for giving Picasso his first one-man show in Paris in 1901. Vollard also gave the first solo shows for artists Cezanne and Matisse in the Paris gallery he created in 1893, where he also exhibited art by Degas, Rodin, Gauguin, and Van Gogh, among others. In most of these early shows Vollard defied public taste, supporting avante-garde artists, all of whom later painted portraits of Vollard in appreciation for his early support. In 1913 Vollard began to purchase the copper etching plates that Picasso prepared with the intention of producing a limited number of etchings. In 1937 Vollard was given 97 copper etching plates by Picasso in trade for some paintings (by other artists) that Picasso wanted. The etching plates were created in the period 1930 to 1936. Picasso later created three etchings of Vollard, bringing the total number of etching plates to 100. Vollard died in an auto accident in 1939 and soon after the etching plates were acquired by Henri Petiet.

The 100 Suite Vollard images are generally categorized by themes: The Battle of Love (5 images), The Sculptor's Studio (46), Rembrandt (4), The Minotaur and The Blind Minotaur (15), and the Portraits of Vollard (3). The remaining 27 images deal with various themes such as women dressing and women sleeping, the circus, bullfight, and love (both tender and otherwise), among others. Evident among all the prints in the Vollard Suite is a unity bound by the nod to neoclassism, influenced by Picasso's earlier trips to art centers in Italy including Rome, Florence, Naples and Pompeii.

Size image: 25.5 x 19 cm (10 x 7 ½ inches)
Size frame: 42 x 35.5 x 1.5 cm (16 ½ x 14 x 5/8 inches)
Weight: 1023 g