Watercolor and gouache on paper by Raoul Dufy
Executed around 1934 – Artwork size : 50,8 x 66,8 cm
Sold £50,000 at Sotheby’s London on Feb 6, 2014
In 1926, while watching a little girl running on the dock of Honfleur, Raoul Dufy realizes that the mind records color faster than the outline. He will then dissociate the colors and the drawing. Dufy adds his drawing to large bands of horizontal or vertical colors, or to large colored spots.
Watercolor and gouache become more and more important after 1930. The “puddles of color” of the background are spread on a paper previously wet and stretched on a drawing board. When they are dry, he draws with a fine brush the various elements of the subject.
When I talk about color, I do not talk of the colors of nature, but of the colors of painting, the colors of our palette which are the words of which we form our language of painter […]
I consider color as the creative element of light, since, in my view,
the color being only generator of light.
Raoul Dufy (1877-1953) is a painter, draftsman, engraver, book illustrator, ceramist, creator of fabrics, tapestries and furniture, decorator of interior, public spaces and French theater.
In 1893, when he is 16 years old, he starts taking evening art classes at Le Havre’s École des Beaux-Arts (municipal art school). His first exhibition takes place at the Salon of French Artists (Salon des Artistes Français) in 1901.
Raoul Dufy is first influenced by Eugène Boudin and Impressionism, then by Fauvism, particularly through Matisse’s work. Dufy finally falls under the spell of Cézanne’s cubism, but he will not ultimately allow himself to be locked up in any pictorial current.