This example of the latter genre is particularly grand and impressive, a major work of its period. Once the fiery leader of the fauves, an early champion of primitive art and a contender for modernist pre-eminence, Derain made the first of his many stylistic backflips around 1910. When Picasso and Braque were at their most experimental, he chose to investigate early Renaissance art as exemplified in the classical values of order, harmony and detachment. From the 1920s his work was regarded as conservative by his contemporaries, though it coincided with the 'return to order' that characterised post-war European culture. Derain is now regarded as a postmodernist before the fact. Some of his figural and still life subjects influenced painters in the 1980s. Recalling an altar set with ritual items, Derain presents his simple objects with a sacramental sense of their placement and interrelation.
AGNSW Handbook, 1999.
oil on canvas
87.2 x 124.5 cm stretcher; 125.5 x 153.5 x 8.0 cm frame
Signature & date
Signed l.r., black oil "A. Derain". Not dated.
Not on display
© Andre Derain/ADAGP. Licensed by VISCOPY, Australia
Shown in 5 exhibitions
Paintings of the French School from a private collection, Temple Newsam House, England, 27 Jul 1944–27 Aug 1944
Seven Decades, 1895-1965: Crosscurrents in Modern Art, Galleria Odyssia, New York, New York, 26 Apr 1966–21 May 1966
Andre Derain Paintings and Drawings, Theo Waddington & Co. Inc., New York, 30 Oct 1981–20 Nov 1981
Favourites: Margaret Olley and Barry Humphries choose from Australian collections (2000), S.H. Ervin Gallery, Sydney, 15 Jan 2000–27 Feb 2000
H.J.P. Bomford, circa 1944, Wiltshire/England, by 1944, lent by Bomford to the 1944 exhibition 'Paintings of the French School from a private collection' at Temple Newsam House. Bomford a London stockbroker, moved to Aldbourne, Wiltshire in 1938 purchasing 2000 acres of farmland. His success at farming due to the outbreak of the Second World War and the demand for food enabled him to pursue his interests in buying and selling art.
Allan Frumkin Gallery, New York, circa 1967-20 Mar 1987, New York/New York/United States of America, Purchased by the AGNSW from Allan Frumkin Gallery 1987. Lent by Allan Frumkin Gallery to the 1967 exhibitions 'Derain' at the Royal Academy and the Royal Scottish Academy.
Referenced in 8 publications
Arts Council of Great Britain and Royal Scottish Academy, Derain: an exhibition of paintings, and theatre designs, London, 1967, 67 (illus.). cat.no. 68
Council for the Encouragement of Music and the Arts, Paintings of the French School from a private collection, London, 1944, (illus.). cat.no. 44, plate 22
Terry Ingram, The Australian financial review, 'A Modern Old Master', Sydney, 19 Mar 1987.
Bruce James, Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, 'Western Collection: Paintings and Sculpture', pg. 17-77, Sydney, 1999, 58 (colour illus.).
Terence Maloon, Look, 'Acquisitions: Derain's Antique Inspirations', Heidelberg, Nov 1987, 12-13, 13 (colour illus.).
Margaret Olley and Barry Humphries, Favourites: Margaret Olley and Barry Humphries choose from public and private collections, Sydney, 2000. Catalogue entry appears in inserted list to printed catalogue
Peter Selz, Seven decades 1895-1965: crosscurrents in modern art, California, 1966, 110 (illus.).
Editor Unknown (Editor), New York Times, 'Theo Waddington', New York, 1981.