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Writing About WWII “events” and Their Effect on Maillol’s Friends and Work

Item: 22908
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MAILLOL, ARISTIDE. (1861-1944). French sculptor. ALS. (“Aristide Maillol”). 1p. 4to. Banyuls-sur-Mer, November 10, 1940. To a gentleman. In French with translation.

“I have to recommend to you one of my friends, a very talented sculptor, who had prepared large crates of sculptures to go to New York for an exhibition – he was prevented by events – but he would like to follow up on this project, and to succeed, he is asking for a letter from you with which he would be given the visa to return to America – could you ask for it? I vouch for his excellent mind and his very great talent, which would have certainly been a big hit in New York. If you could do this for him, you would give me great pleasure.

For my part, I was unable, also because of events, to follow up on your stone statue order – we will see later. I am always at your disposal when it interests you. Receive, Sir, with my remembrance of Marly-le-Roi, the expression of my dedication…”

Portrait of Maillol

Aristide Maillol

At age 20, Maillol moved to Paris to study painting at l’Ecole des Beaux-Arts and was encouraged by Paul Gauguin to work in tapestry, a decorative art effectively revived by Maillol. In the 1890s, as a follower of Gauguin, he joined the ranks of the Nabis, artists who pursued pure form rather than Symbolism or Impressionism. In 1900, an eye disease halted his painting and tapestry work, prompting him to pursue sculpture. His classically inspired nudes are robust, like the work of his contemporary Auguste Rodin, but while their subject matter is often similar, Maillol’s nudes are presented in a reserved manner akin to ancient Greek sculpture.

Our letter mentioning “events” refers to the recent invasion of France by the Nazis; Paris fell in June 1940. It also mentions Maillol’s studio in Marly-le-Roi, a suburb of Paris, and was written from Banyuls-sur-Mer where, in his later years, he lived on his farm “La Métairie,” now the Musée Maillol de Banyuls-sur-Mer.

Lightly folded and creased; in overall fine condition. Uncommon.

Writing About WWII “events” and Their Effect on Maillol’s Friends and Work

$750 • item #22908

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