Nu Assis à la Chaise Verte
Date 1944
Medium Oil on canvas
Dimensions 102 x 83.4 x 3 cm
Inventory ID UID 102-235
This painting from the war period clearly expresses the torment and anguish of the painter faced with loneliness, pain and the darkest aspects of human nature, as revealed by the war and the German occupation. It shows a bleak interior, with a garden or terrace chair, a wooden plinth marking the edge of an undefined space and a precarious wooden table. The body is not gaunt, yet it is angular, the muscles are tensed, the lines of the neck overly prominent, the hair tousled. The remains of a withered branch seem pathetic. The woman appears to be withdrawn, her gaze is absent. The model was Georges Bernstein, the painter’s wife from 1942. Also in 1944, Francis Gruber painted a large version of Job (Tate Modern, London), an allegory of suffering but also of survival and hope during the occupation. Along the same lines, he painted Les Cadavres [The Corpses] in 1946, at a time when his health problems were becoming serious. AC
Galérie Galanis-Hentschel, Paris; Eric Estorick, London; The Mayor Gallery, London; acquired in 1995.