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Germaine Richier’s investigation of the composition and decomposition of organic materials situates her work in the vitalist current of twentieth-century sculpture, which concerns itself with natural processes. In an assault on closed form, she breaks through her heavily worked surfaces to expose the structural armature and hollow spaces within the bodies they describe. In subject matter and style this sculpture recalls both Pablo Picasso’s Surrealist bullfight imagery of the 1930s and his sculptures of the early 1950s. Richier shared with Picasso an interest in the mythic, archaic implications of bullfights, which she attended as a child in Provence, where she grew up. Moreover, the figure's head has been transformed into a trident, a small metal prod attached to a wooden stick the horsemen who guard bulls still use today in the Camargue. Richier, like Henry Moore during the same year, places her forms in situational relationships.
|Dimensions||figure 111.5 cm high; base 95.7 x 52.5 x 3 cm|
|Credit line||Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice (Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York)|
|Accession||76.2553 PG 205|
|Collection||Peggy Guggenheim Collection|