Exhibitions/ Art Object

Houses under the Trees

Artist:
Fernand Léger (French, Argentan 1881–1955 Gif-sur-Yvette)
Date:
1913
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
36 1/4 x 28 3/4 in. (92.1 x 73 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Promised Gift from the Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection
Rights and Reproduction:
© 2017 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Not on view
Léger was intrigued by the contrast between the billowing forms of the trees that frame this composition and the central rectangular buildings painted blue, white, and red—the colors of the French flag. Léger developed a language of basic geometric shapes, which signify different objects depending on their context. Here, the buoyant semicircles represent foliage, whereas elsewhere they become the anatomical curves of a nude figure or ethereal puffs of smoke rising in an urban landscape.
Inscription: Signed (lower left): F. Léger; signed, dated, and inscribed (verso, on stretchers): F. Léger (1913) / LES maisons sous les ARBRES; (verso): unidentified oil painting with cancellation marks by the artist, 1912
[Galerie Kahnweiler, Paris, in 1914; inv. no. 1[?]497; sequestered Kahnweiler stock, December 12, 1914–21; first Kahnweiler sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, June 13, 1921, no. 64, sold as "Paysage," 1912, for Fr 700, to Rosenberg]; [Galerie L’Effort Moderne (Léonce Rosenberg), Paris, from 1921; inv. no. 7481, photo no. 385]; Jacques Zoubaloff, Paris (until 1935; his sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris, November 28, 1935, no. 142, sold for Fr 2,200, to an unidentified bidder); [possibly Galerie Simon (Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler), Paris]; [Marie Sterner Gallery, New York, until 1936; her sale, Rains Galleries (Rains Auction Rooms, Inc.), New York, April 23, 1936, no. 100, sold to Chrysler]; Walter P. Chrysler, Jr., New York (1936–at least 1962); Bette and Neison Harris, Chicago (in 1987); Harris Family Foundation, Chicago (until 1990; the foundation’s sale, Christie’s, New York, November 14, 1990, no. 19, sold to Lauder); Leonard A. Lauder, New York (from 1990)

Arts Club of Chicago. "The Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. Collection," January 8–31, 1937, no. 10.

Detroit Institute of Arts. "Selected Exhibition of the Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. Collection," October 5–31, 1937, no. 36.

New York. Museum of Modern Art. "Art in Our Time: An Exhibition to Celebrate the Tenth Anniversary of the Museum of Modern Art and the Opening of Its New Building," May 10–September 30, 1939, no. 169.

San Francisco. California Palace of the Legion of Honor and M. H. de Young Memorial Museum. "Seven Centuries of Painting: A Loan Exhibition of Old and Modern Masters," December 29, 1939–January 28, 1940, no. Y–183.

Arts Club of Chicago. "Origins of Modern Art," April 2–30, 1940, no. 54.

Richmond. Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. "Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.," January 16–March 4, 1941, no. 69.

Philadelphia Museum of Art. "Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.," March 29–May 11, 1941, no. 69.

Provincetown, Mass. Chrysler Art Museum. "Inaugural Exhibition," July 1958, no. 36.

Dayton Art Institute. "French Paintings, 1789–1929, from the Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.," March 25–May 22, 1960, no. 105.

Provincetown, Mass. Chrysler Art Museum. "The Controversial Century, 1850–1950: Paintings from the Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.," June–September 1962, unnumbered cat.

Ottawa. National Gallery of Canada. "The Controversial Century, 1850–1950: Paintings from the Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr.," September–November 1962, unnumbered cat.

New York. Finch College Museum of Art. "French Landscape Painters from Four Centuries," October 20, 1965–January 9, 1966.

New York. Acquavella Galleries, Inc. "Fernand Léger: A Loan Exhibition for the Benefit of the New York Hospital Auxiliary," October 23–December 12, 1987, no. 8.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. May–November 1991 (on view in Gallery 913).

Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg. "Fernand Léger, 1911–1924: Der Rhythmus des modernen Lebens," May 29–August 14, 1994, no. 14.

Kunstmuseum Basel. "Fernand Léger, 1911–1924: Der Rhythmus des modernen Lebens," September 11–November 27, 1994, no. 14.

Philadelphia Museum of Art. "Léger: Modern Art and the Metropolis," October 14, 2013–January 5, 2014, unnumbered cat. (pl. 10).

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection," October 20, 2014–February 16, 2015, no. 34.

"Échos de l’Hôtel Drouot. Liste complète des prix atteints aux ventes Uhde et Kahnweiler: Vente Kahnweiler, 13 et 14 June 1921." L’Esprit Nouveau: Revue internationale illustré de l’actualité contemporaine no. 13 (1921), p. 1567, as "Les Maisons sous les arbres".

Bulletin de "l'effort moderne" no. 9 (November 1924), unpaginated, ill., as "Paysage", 1912.

Blaise Cendrars. "Fernand Léger." Cahiers d'art 8 (1933), ill. p. 96, as "Paysage," 1912.

Exhibition of the Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. Collection. Exh. cat., Arts Club of Chicago. Chicago, 1937, unpaginated, no. 10.

Selected Exhibition of the Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. Collection. Exh. cat., Detroit Institute of Arts. Detroit, 1937, p. 9, no. 36.

Art in our Time. Exh. cat., Museum of Modern Art. New York, 1939, unpaginated, no. 169, ill.

Seven Centuries of Painting: A Loan Exhibition of Old and Modern Masters. Exh. cat., California Palace of the Legion of Honor and M. H. de Young Memorial Museum. San Francisco, 1939, p. 53, no. Y–183.

Origins of Modern Art. Exh. cat., Arts Club of Chicago. Chicago, 1940, unpaginated, no. 54.

Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. Exh. cat., Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Richmond, 1941, p. 53, no. 69, ill.

Bertina Suida Manning. Inaugural Exhibition. Exh. cat., Chrysler Art Museum. Provincetown, 1958, pp. 21, 76, no. 36, ill.

French Paintings, 1789–1929, from the Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. Exh. cat., Dayton Art Institute. Dayton, 1960, pp. 113, 138, no. 105, ill.

The Controversial Century, 1850–1950: Paintings from the Collection of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. Exh. cat., Chrysler Art Museum. Provincetown, 1962, unpaginated, ill.

French Landscape Painters from Four Centuries. Exh. cat., Finch College Museum of Art. New York, 1965, unpaginated, no. 59, ill.

Werner Schmalenbach. Fernand Léger. New York, 1976, p. 84, pl. 7.

Malcolm Gee. Dealers, Critics, and Collectors of Modern Painting: Aspects of the Parisian Art Market Between 1910 and 1930. PhD diss., Courtauld Institute of Art. New York, 1981, appendix F, p. 61, no. 11.

Gaston Diehl. F. Léger. Paris, 1985, p. 19, as "Les arbres dans les maisons".

Werner Schmalenbach. Fernand Léger. Concise ed. (1st ed., 1976). New York, 1985, p. 58, pl. 6.

Fernand Léger: A Loan Exhibition for the Benefit of the New York Hospital Auxiliary. Exh. cat., Acquavella Galleries, Inc. New York, 1987, p. 76, no. 8, ill. p. 33.

Georges Bauquier assisté de Nelly Maillard. Fernand Léger: Catalogue raisonné. Vol. 1, 1903–1919. Paris, 1990, p. 120, no. 65, ill. p. 121.

Dorothy M. Kosinski, ed. Fernand Léger, 1911–1924: The Rhythm of Modern Life. Exh. cat., Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg. Munich, 1994, p. 244, no. 14, ill. p. 97.

Christian Derouet, ed. Correspondances Fernand Léger–Léonce Rosenberg, 1917–1937. Paris, 1996, p. 269, inv. no. 7481.

Kristen Erickson in Carolyn Lanchner. Fernand Léger. Exh. cat., Museum of Modern Art. New York, 1998, p. 277.

"Objects Promised to the Museum during the Year 2012–2013." The Metropolitan Museum of Art, One Hundred Forty-third Annual Report of the Trustees for the Fiscal Year July 1, 2012, through June 30, 2013 (2013), p. 46.

Anna Vallye, ed. Léger: Modern Art and the Metropolis. Exh. cat., Philadelphia Museum of Art. Philadelphia, 2013, pp. 2, 12, 267, pl. 10.

Emily Braun and Rebecca Rabinow in Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection. Ed. Emily Braun and Rebecca Rabinow. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2014, pp. 226–27, 315(1)n.3, fig. 95 (verso, showing an unidentified oil painting with cancellation marks by the artist, 1912).

Dorothy Kosinski in Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection. Ed. Emily Braun and Rebecca Rabinow. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2014, pp. 164, 167, 169, no. 34, ill. p. 165 (color).

Anna Jozefacka and Luise Mahler in Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection. Ed. Emily Braun and Rebecca Rabinow. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2014, pp. 269–70, fig. 34 (installation photo, Exh. New York 1939).

Emily Braun and Leonard A. Lauder in Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection. Ed. Emily Braun and Rebecca Rabinow. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2014, pp. 15–16.