Danseuse de Cabaret. Drawing with watercolor, gouache, pen and India ink made around 1912 by Umberto Brunelleschi (1879-1949). Signed lower right. Size (oval) approx. 32,5 x 24 cm (frame: 56,5 x 46,5 cm).
The Italian Umberto Brunelleschi worked in Paris from 1900 until his death. His activities as a painter and especially as a costume and set designer make him a defining figure in the history of theater costumes and scenography of the 20th century.
From 1910, Brunelleschi set the tone by creating works inspired by the 18th-century Venice of poet Paul Verlaine‘s Fêtes Galantes. These paintings were full of jealous Harlequins, mischievous Columbines and betrayed Pierrots, immersed in an atmosphere of comic languor or sadness.
By choosing these subjects, Brunelleschi embarked on a new path very different from that of the various avant-garde movements in painting, which sought to glorify modern technology on the one hand and defined new spatial dimensions on the other. But this fondness for fables and dreams was the result of special historical and spiritual needs. Europe was torn apart at that time and there was great social and political unrest. The middle class basked in the last warmth of the Belle Époque and was overcome by a sense of insecurity. They sought refuge in the easy but entertaining attraction of an unreal fairytale world. This search for escapism and spiritual seclusion suited Brunelleschi’s nature, and he became one of its most gifted and successful interpreters.
Themes such as bravery, sentiment and 18th century grace, merged in these years with a daring and imaginative East. Beautifully depicted here in this drawing of a danseuse.
In 1928 a Parisian critic wrote: “Brunelleschi’s art has nothing realistic about it. He wouldn’t know how to cope with modern life, with its huge factories and streets full of people. But he makes the world of fiction reality, which is so much more beautiful than the human world.”
Price: Euro 6.500,- (incl. frame)