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Femme de Venise II

Photo: Spike Mafford / Zocalo Studios. Courtesy of the Friday Foundation

Femme de Venise II

1956

Alberto Giacometti

Swiss, 1901-1966

Alberto Giacometti’s mature style, of which Femme de Venise II is an example, was predicated on a new concept of the figure, which he developed during and after World War II. The hieratic stance and the artist’s characteristic use of a heavy, rectangular pedestal are derived from studies of ancient Greek and Egyptian statues.

The Women of Venice were a group of ten upright silhouettes made for the French Pavilion of the 28th Venice Biennale in 1956. Giacometti created approximately fifteen figures, modeled in clay and cast in plaster by his brother and frequent assistant, Diego Giacometti. Of these, he selected ten plaster casts for the Biennale. Some of the Women of Venice were closely related to life studies from the model, while others were marked by a greater degree of abstraction. Within this group, Femme de Venise II is among the most abstract, with both arms melting into the body. Only nine of the Women of Venice were later cast in bronze.
Bronze
47 3/8 x 5 3/4 x 12 7/8 in. (120.2 x 14.8 x 32.7 cm)
Gift of the Friday Foundation in honor of Richard E. Lang and Jane Lang Davis
2020.14.8
Provenance: Aimé Maeght, Paris; [Sidney Janis Gallery, New York]; purchased from gallery by Jane and Richard Lang, Seattle, Washington, 1975
Photo: Spike Mafford / Zocalo Studios. Courtesy of the Friday Foundation
location
Not currently on view

Resources

Exhibition HistoryNew York, New York, Sidney Janis Gallery, Picasso to Pollock: Two Generations, 1967. Cat. no. 37, reproduced.

New York, New York, Sidney Janis Gallery, Giacometti-Dubuffet, 1968. Cat. no. 5, reproduced.

New York, Sidney Janis Gallery, Twentieth Century European Art, 1970. Cat. no. 41, reproduced.

Seattle, Washington Seattle Art Museum, The Richard and Jane Lang Collection, Feb. 2 - Apr. 1, 1984. Text by Bruce Guenther and Barbara Johns. Cat. no. 11, p. 25.

Los Angeles, California, David Tunkl Fine Art, Definitive Moments of the 20th Century, Sept. 13 - Oct. 28, 2001.

Seattle, Seattle Art Museum, SAM at 75: Building a Collection for Seattle, May 5 - Sept. 9, 2007.
Published ReferencesA Community of Collectors: 75th Anniversary Gifts to the Seattle Art Museum. Seattle: Seattle Art Museum and University of Washington Press, 2008. Reproduced p. 105.

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