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on Sep 1, 2014 in | 0 comments

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Indian Ink and Gouache on Paper
18 7/8 x 16 visible paper inches
26 1/2 x 23 inches matted behind glass in nondescript frame
Signed Helene Perdriat in graphite lower right
Vertical rippling to paper; some toning; limited stable craquelure
Last origin: New England estate

This painting is attributed as “The Young Bird Seller” and was used for the costume design of a mid 1920s ballent, Le Marchand d’Oiseaux. The full sheet dimensions vary from those listed in the ballet archives but the difference is probably due to the visual composition through matting/framing.

Hélène Marie Marguerite Perdriat (1894 – 1969) was born in La Rochelle, France in 1894. In 1915 at the age of 21 she became ill and believed she was going to die. In her sick bed she had a longing to paint a self-portrait, this was the beginning of a long successful career. She recovered from her illness but required a long convalescence, this gave her the opportunity to continue painting. She painted more self-portraits, portraits of friends and her sisters. She painted from childhood dreams, and memories of ships from the Breton coast, and she wrote poems. She painted animals, ships, and sailors, but always return to self-images, often incorporating her fantasy characters.

When Perdriat recovered she married the Norwegian artist Thorwald Helleson; they went to Oslo, Norway on their honeymoon. She took her paintings with her, and for amusement she exhibited them, they were received well and she sold many canvases. Perdriat went on to exhibit in London, Berlin, New York, and Chicago. She continued to live in Paris, she exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants beginning in 1919, the Salon des Tuileries, Salon d’Automne, and the Salon de la Folle Enchére in 1923. She exhibited at the Galerie Monyaigne in Paris in 1920, the Gallery Neumann, and Gallery Chambrun in New York in, Brown-Robertson Gallery in Chicago in1930. She exhibited at l’Exposition des Femmes Artistes Modernes at the Théatre Pigalle in 1931.

Charm and originality, naïve and modern, all good, but inadequate words to describe Perdriat’s work. Maybe because she had no formal training Perdriat’s paintings are very personal. She came from a wealthy family, traveled in artistic circles in Paris even before she painted, and she wrote poetry, her paintings are rich with poetry. Like many successful artists she had a style that could be identified as her own, thus her paintings are very recognizable. Perdriat illustrated several books, and executed engravings. Her works are in important collections and museums, including the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia. Source:papillongallery.com

Related information for the ballet this painting was used for appears below.
Le Marchand d’Oiseaux / Marchand d’Oiseaux / Fågelhandlaren /
The Bird Seller / The Snare / The Bird Merchant
Ballet librettos and descriptions
“Scenario – Rideau” for Marchand d’oiseaux, 1 page.
Marchand d’oiseaux, ballet en un acte par Hélène Perdriat, 2 pages.
Correspondence
Letter to Monsieur Rolf de Maré from Heugel, June 18, 1926.
Letter to Monsieur Heugel from Le directeur Général Rolf de Maré, June 21, 1926.
C.A.S.A., invitation to dinner & modern ballet June 11 from CANUDO, May 30, 1923.
Letter to Monsieur Jacques Hébertot from Germaine Tailleferre, March 19, 1923.
Costume designs
DM 194 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The young bird seller, Indian ink, gouache, 43×31, photo.
DM 195 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The older sister, pencil, gouache, 43×29, photo.
DM 196 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The younger sister, pencil, gouache, 43×29,5, photo.
DM 197 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The un-known de-masked and masked, Indian ink, gouache,
35×41,5, photo.
DM 198 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The garden girls, pencil, water-colour, gouache, 38×55,
photo.
DM 199 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The school girls, gouache, 37×57,5, photo.
DM 200 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, Les Enfants de Maries, pencil, water-colour, gouache,
40×60,5, photo.
DM 201 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, gouache, 30×20, photo.
DM 202 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, gouache, 30×20, photo.
DM 203 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The younger sister’s bouquet of flowers, gouache, 23,5×19,
photo.
DM 204 Hélène Perdriat, 1923, The older sister’s bouquet of flowers, gouache, 35,5×33,5,
photo.
Source: www.dansmuseet.se. At the heart of Stockholm is Dansmuseet, a museum dedicated to world dance. Dansmuseet was established in 1953 in a basement of the Royal Opera House in Stockholm. The collections and activities have developed a great deal over the years, and the museum has moved several times up until 1999 when it was housed in a magnificent bank palace on Gustav Adolfs torg, built in 1918. In spring 2013 the museum moved to Drottninggatan 17. The museum has its origin in the Archives Internationales de la Danse, founded in Paris in 1933 by Rolf de Maré. Another important figure is Bengt Häger, who was the first director of Dansmuseet. In 1989, the post was taken over by Erik Näslund.