Description & Technical information

As one of the major painters of the French contemporary artistic scene of the 20th century's second half, Georges Mathieu is often considered as the founder of the European lyrical abstraction.
On large monochrome backgrounds, Mathieu crushed paint directly from the tube to the canvas, then reworked it with his fingers or thanks to diverse painter tools. The backgrounds of this works, often called calligraphic,
became more consistent from 1949; it had the consequence to make the inscribed signs more independent. At the same time, the curved and
sinuous shapes progressively became sharper and more precise, while the gesture accelerated.

"Raguenni" was painted in 1965, at the summum
of the critical acknowledgement of Mathieu's career, whose œuvre had been consecrated two years before that during a great retrospective at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. Here, the black on the yellowish/orange background evokes the Asian universe which fed his
imagination, but the most remarkable thing is this exceptional formal pureness, emphasized by a wonderful economy of both gesture and colour.
Mathieu's shapes, with their distant Chinese-like accents, sustain André Malraux's thought, who, from 1950, deemed the painter to be "the greatest Western calligrapher".

The authenticity of this work was confirmed by Mr Jean-Marie Cusinberche. Certificate of authenticity issued by Mr Edouard Lombard, January 11th 2020.

Date:  1965
Period:  20th century
Origin:  France
Medium: Oil on canvas
Signature: Signed and dated lower right: Mathieu 65

Dimensions: 73 x 46 cm (28³/₄ x 18¹/₈ inches)
Provenance: Dominion Gallery, Montréal.
Private collection (acquired by the mother of the former owner from the above).

Categories: Paintings, Drawings & Prints