Image description

Fernand Leger (1881 - 1955) - Prints and Multiples

Fernand Leger L Enfant et L Acordeon

L’Enfant a L”Acordion (Child with an Accordion)

Original aquatint with colour screen print, 1953, on watermarked BFK Rives paper,  with signed by the artist  in ballpoint pen below right.

Edition: 75 copies

Printed by: Etched and printed at the studio of Haasen, Paris, 1953

Published by:  The artist himself (in association with Editions Falaize).

Size: Sheet: 556 x 707 mms. Plate 471 x 565mm.

Reference: Saphire - Leger The complete Graphic Work no 127.

Note: This work exhibits a tender moment captured between parent and child. The child dances in the foreground, playing an accordion, while his mother lounges behind him, gazing on with pride and adoration.  The artist uses his signature style of bold, black outlines to convey his subjects and then slashes thick blocks of bright, vibrant colours, in this case, red, yellow, and green, over them. Léger over exaggerates the difference in size between parent and child; the mother appears as a giant, larger than life, while the child appears somewhat minute. This contrast is particularly noticeable where the child places his tiny food atop his mother’s large hand to the lower right, for his foot in its entirety equates the size of two of his mother’s fingers. The child appears wise beyond his years with a mature face and an advanced sense of coordination as he plays his musical instrument, yet his body appears as that of an extremely young child.

Condition Report: Damage to margins consisting of abrasions, piercings, stains and paper losses. These are far from the image and not apparent when framed. Some marks on the image occasioned by bad folding or broken glass.


Fernand Leger Les Constructeurs

 Les Constructeurs (The Builders)

Original Lithograph on Johannot paper, 1955, , signed by the artist in ink (lower left)

Size: Image: 59.3 x 44.2 cm. (23 3/8 x 17 3/8 in.)

Sheet Size: 63.5 x 50.8 cm. (25 x 20 in.)

Edition: 250

Reference: L Saphire, Fernand Leger: The Complete Graphic Work, New York, 1978, no. 141, p. 234 (another example illustrated) and further discussed pp. 285-86.

Published by:  The Folkorelsernas Konstframjande, Stockholm, Sweden

Note:  This shows two men seated in the scaffolding of a building, Léger carefully constructs an image defined by structure and weightlessness, qualities that characterizes the construction of multistoried building. Of this series Léger has stated: “I took Les Constructeurs down to the Renault factory, and they were hung on the walls of the canteen. The blokes came in at twelve. They looked at the pictures whilst they were eating. Some of them sniggered 'Just look at them! Those blokes could never move with hands like that!' In fact they were making judgments and comparisons. My pictures seemed funny to them. They didn't understand them. Sadly eating my soup I listened to them. I went back to eat at the canteen eight days later. The atmosphere was different. The blokes weren't laughing any more, they weren't looking at the paintings. Nevertheless, quite a few of them, while eating, glanced up, had a quick look at the pictures before digging into their plates again. Who knows if the canvases intrigued them or not. But when I was getting ready to go one of the blokes came up to me: 'You're the painter, aren't you? You'll see. My mates are going to notice the difference when you take your paintings away. When they'll be looking at blank wall in front of them, my mates are going to realize what your colours are like…' that’s the kind of statement that gives one pleasure" (Francia, 204 - 205).


Private Collection, Sweden

Private Collection, London, UK

Condition: The signature slightly faed (as normal) otherwise in good condition.


Fernand Leger Composition aux deux oiseaux

 Composition aux deux Oiseau

Original Lithograph on Arches paper, 1954,  signed with monogram and dated 53 in the stone, signed by the artist in ink (lower left)

Size: 502 x 657 mms (19 ¾” x 25 ⅞” inches)

Edition: 75

Reference: L Saphire, Fernand Leger: The Complete Graphic Work, New York, 1978, No 134

Note: The present lithographic print comes from a series that Léger created in the early 1950s featuring two doves, the symbol of love and peace. The delineated doves are set within an illustrated city-scape that depicts telephone poles, wires, buildings and abstract foliage foregrounded against bold strokes of yellow, red, purple and green. This modernist and schematic treatment of an essentially natural scene embodies Léger's mature oeuvre and captures his colourful, joyful vision at this late stage in his career.


Private Collection, Sweden

Private Collection, London, UK

Museum Collections: 

Metropolitan Museum, New York

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Condition: The signature slightly faed (as normal) otherwise in good condition.