1902 - 1976
Générosité des herbes, 1959
Signed 'Lanskoy' lower right; titled and dated verso
Oil on canvas
39 3/8 x 28 3/4 in, 100 x 73 cm
André Lanskoy became a leading figure of Abstraction and Tachisme after moving to Paris in 1921. He was born into an aristocratic elite family favoured by Queen Catherine the Great...
André Lanskoy became a leading figure of Abstraction and Tachisme after moving to Paris in 1921. He was born into an aristocratic elite family favoured by Queen Catherine the Great and had fought for the White Army before fleeing the Russian revolution. When Lanskoy arrived in Paris he began to paint, explaining, ‘literally in the first night I started to paint and I haven’t stopped since’.
During the 1940s and 50s Lanskoy rigorously experimented with a form of lyrical abstraction that stood opposed to the cold geometric style around him. Having abandoned figuration in the 1930s, Lanskoy was driven to pursue a new means of expression, inspired by his growing friendship with fellow Parisian-based Russian artist Nicholas de Staël. Lanskoy met the young de Staël in 1944 at the Jean Bucher Gallery and formed an immediate connection, hosting a joint exhibition together in 1948.
By the time Générosité des herbes was painted in 1959 Lanskoy had reached great international acclaim and regularly exhibited with such artists at Dubuffet, Riopelle, Poliakoff and Appel. Générosité des herbes displays Lanskoy’s exciting ability to make his paintings a sensory experience. Layers of thick opaque oil paint are applied upon each other, creating a composition built around the physicality of paint and colour contrasts that vibrate off one another. Lanskoy’s gestural representation of external sensations established his reputation, according to influential critic Pierre Guégen, as ‘one of the greatest of all abstract painters’.
Lanskoy’s work can now be found in numerous major public collections, including the Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Recognised as one of the leading post-war abstract artists in Europe, Lanskoy exhibited at the landmark exhibition Documenta II at Kassel in 1958 and at the major New York Fine Art Associates show in 1956. In the year Lanskoy created Générosité des herbes he exhibited alongside Soulages, Viera de Silva, Appel, and Hartung in ‘The Internationals’ at Walker Art Centre, Minneapolis (1959).
Galerie Louis Carré, Paris
This work is accompanied by a certificate issued by the Comité Lanskoy dated 3 October 2018 and will be included in the forthcoming catalogue raisonné.