Málaga 1881 - 1973 Mougins
Découpage, double-sided pencil drawing on brownish light card. 10.1 x 3.6 cm. Framed under glass resp. acrylic glass (double-sided). Unsigned. Inscribed '2' and '1' in pencil verso on soles of feet. - Mounted on acrylic glass with transparent adhesive tape on the back of the figure. Some minor traces of studio.
With a photo-certificate from Galerie Jan Krugier, Geneva, dated December 1973
Formerly Collection Marie-Thérèse Walter (collection stamps on the photo-certificate); Galerie Jan Krugier, Geneva; Private collection, Austria
Geneva 1973 (Galerie Jan Krugier), Une Collection Picasso, No. 87; Düsseldorf 1977 (Galerie Schmela), Picasso privat
Although - considered in technical terms - it is a sheet of cut paper with drawing, the present work by Picasso is nonetheless to be understood in terms of an original sculpture. The two-sided design of the nude figure conforms to this decidedly spatial conception of the work. Smaller traces from the studio additionally allow the assumption that the artist used folding to also develop the initially two-dimensional object into the third dimension. Werner Spies has pointed out how far-reaching an effect these folded works - seemingly casually cut and torn out of paper - presumably had on Picasso's work: Anticipating the folded sheet-metal sculptures, the experiment of these small-format works from the period around 1940 pre-annonounces a central constructive principle in the late work of Picasso as sculptor (see Werner Spies, Picasso, Das plastische Werk, Stuttgart 1971, p. 144).
The special relevance of this adorable piece is also underscored by its extraordinary provenance. Before entering an Austrian private collection by way of Jan Krugier and Alfred Schmela, it was owned for many years by Pablo Picasso's model and lover Marie-Thérèse Walter.