Throughout his career, La Fresnaye demonstrated his great admiration for Paul Cézanne. In this early work, the idea to identify the sitter, Georges de Miré—the artist’s first cousin and friend—at the top of the canvas was inspired by the work of Cézanne. The faceted forms and reduced palette of this full-length portrait also reveal La Fresnaye’s awareness of the early Cubism of Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso. Exhibited at the 1910 Salon d’Automne (the annual exhibition held in Paris in the fall), the painting demonstrated— alongside canvases by Albert Gleizes, Jean Metzinger, and Robert Delaunay—the growing interest in a new kind of painting focused on form rather than on color, as was the case with Henri Matisse and the Fauves.
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Title:Georges de Miré
Artist:Roger de la Fresnaye (French, Le Mans 1885–1925 Grasse)
Medium:Oil on canvas
Dimensions:51 1/2 × 38 1/2 in. (130.8 × 97.8 cm)
Credit Line:Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Nathan Cummings, 1962
Inscription: Inscribed (top): GEORGES DE MIRE; signed (lower right): R. DE LA FRESNAYE
the sitter, Paris (from 1910); [Galerie Pierre, Paris, until 1930; sold on May 25, 1930, for Fr 80,000, to René Gimpel, Paris, for the Toledo Museum of Art]; Toledo Museum of Art (1930–55; accession no. 30.210; on consignment 1951–55 to M. Knoedler & Co., Inc., New York, consignment no. CA 3955; sold by Knoedler on April 14, 1955, for $7,000, to Chrysler); Walter P. Chrysler, Jr., New York and Warrenton, Va. (from 1955); [E. and A. Silberman Galleries, Inc., New York, in 1960; sold to Cummings]; Mr. and Mrs. Nathan Cummings, Chicago (until 1962; their gift to MMA)
Paris. Grand Palais des Champs-Élysées. "Salon d'Automne," October 1–November 8, 1910, no. 435 (as "Portrait de M. G. de Miré," lent by M. de Miré).
New York. Buchholz Gallery, Curt Valentin. "Roger de la Fresnaye, 1885–1925," October 23–November 10, 1945, no. 15 (as "Portrait of Georges de Mire," possibly 1917, lent anonymously).
Washington. National Gallery of Art. "Selections from the Nathan Cummings Collection," June 28–September 11, 1970, no. 21.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Summer Loan 1971: Paintings from New York Collections. Nathan Cummings Collection," July 1–September 7, 1971, no. 21 (New York venue, brochure no. 30).
Art Institute of Chicago. "Major Works from the Collection of Nathan Cummings," October 20–December 9, 1973, no. 50.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Selection Three: Twentieth-Century Art," October 22, 1985–January 26, 1986, no catalogue.
Canberra. Australian National Gallery. "20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," March 1–April 27, 1986, unnumbered cat. (p. 11).
Brisbane. Queensland Art Gallery. "20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York," May 7–July 1, 1986, unnumbered cat.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Painters in Paris: 1895–1950," March 8–December 31, 2000, extended to January 14, 2001, unnumbered cat. (p. 28).
André Salmon. "L'Oeuvre de Roger de la Fresnaye." L'Art vivant 2 (December 1, 1926), ill. p. 887, calls it "Portrait de M. de Miré".
Blake-More Godwin. The Toledo Museum of Art: Catalogue of European Paintings. Toledo, 1939, pp. 274–75, ill., calls it "Portrait".
Germain Seligman. Roger de la Fresnaye. New York, 1945, pp. 12, 42, no. 27, pl. XV, calls it "Georges de Miré, Portrait" and tentatively dates it about 1917; erroneously locates it in a private collection.
Burlington Magazine 102 (May 1960), ill. p. xxi (advertisement for E. A. Silberman Galleries).
Germain Seligman. Roger de la Fresnaye, with a Catalogue Raisonné. Greenwich, Conn., 1969, pp. 76, 138, no. 76, ill., calls it "Portrait: Georges de Miré"; reproduces a charcoal study for this painting (location unknown).
Carol Cutler. Selections from the Nathan Cummings Collection. Exh. cat., National Gallery of Art. Washington, 1970, p. 36, no. 21, ill.
Michael Lloyd in20th Century Masters from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Exh. cat., Australian National Gallery. Canberra, 1986, p. 11, ill. (color), dates it about 1910.
Roger Bevan. "Exhibition Reviews: The Metropolitan Museum: A New Wing for Modern Art." Apollo 127 (January 1988), p. 41.
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Roger de la Fresnaye (French, Le Mans 1885–1925 Grasse)
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