Auction 1078, Modern Art, 02.12.2016, 18:00, Cologne Lot 226

Léonard-Tsuguharu Foujita, Autoportrait à la pipe

Léonard-Tsuguharu Foujita, Autoportrait à la pipe, 1924, Auction 1078 Modern Art, Lot 226

Léonard-Tsuguharu Foujita

Edogawa Tokio 1886 - 1968 Paris

Autoportrait à la pipe


Pencil drawing on two pieces of very light Japan paper, mounted on firmer cream-coloured paper support by the artist. 28.2 x 20.6/25.4 cm (33 x 28.5 cm). Framed under glass. Signed and dated 'Foujita Sep.1924' lower right and additionally signed in Japanese. - With foxing.

Buisson 24.42


Belgian private collection; Private collection, North Germany

Léonard-Tsuguharu Foujita, who completed his studies at the Academy in Tokyo, emigrated to Europe early on. Following a stay in London where he worked as a designer for the tradition steeped department store Selfridges, he then permanently settled in Paris. Within only a short period of time he was integrated into the existing artists' community where he stood out not only due to his very own European style influenced by Asian painting tradition but also because of his eccentric appearance.

As is the case with many artists, in Foujita's work the self-portrait, as a continual validation of one's personal position and emotional state, occupies an important space up until old age. Through the collage of the two papers, the present drawing is a graphic example for the process of picture composition as it developed during the preparation for a watercolour painting on silk, whereby the stronger flexion of the right hand in the final version illustrates a greater cohesion of the composition (cf. Sylvie Buisson/Dominique Buisson, Léonard-Tsuguharu Foujita, Paris 1987, vol. 1, cat. no. 24.38, illus. p. 372).

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