In the mid 1950’s Picasso created 50 or so Gemmaux paintings at the Malherbe Studio in France. This particular painting, found in the basement of the Evansville Museum of Arts, History, and Science in storage for nearly 50 years. The piece is titled “Seated Woman With Red Hat” and is presumably a portrait of Picasso’s French mistress, Marie-Theresa Walter. A photograph from the mid-50’s (see above) also helps to identify the piece and seal its legitimacy.
“Gemmaux are made of multicolored pieces of glass, layered and then fused together with liquid enamel, a technique first developed by the French artist Jean Crotti. “Seated Woman With Red Hat” is encased in a wooden shadow box so that it can be illuminated from the back…’It’s just a wonderful thing to see,’ said Mr. Ettinger, who visited Evansville. ‘Unlike flat canvas, it really sparkles; 2-D pictures don’t do it justice.‘” (via NY Times.)
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