Neal Baer Collection

Paul Thévenaz

L’après midi d’étéou L’insatisfaite [The summer afternoon or, the Unsatisfied]

n.d. (c. 1910s)

Ink on paper

9.5 × 12.25 in (24 × 31 cm)

Given to the American artist Florine Stettheimer, this drawing features a female figure lounging under a palm tree in a leisure setting. Her four legs recall the representation of motion by the Futurists but in a decidedly more campy style. It is representative of Thévenaz’ drawings of highly stylized figures in “jardins d’amour” or fantastic landscape settings. 

Paul Thévenaz (1891-1921) was born in Geneva, Switzerland and lived in New York and Paris during his lifetime, cut short by a ruptured appendix in 1921. He mostly worked as a mural decorator but associated with international members of the avant-garde, such as artist Jean Cocteau, composer Igor Stravinsky, and poet Witter Bynner. Thévenaz was interested in expressing the musical and rhythmic forms of the ballet through decoration. “No matter what the subject is, decoration is related to music and the higher mathematics.”  He produced many sketches and drawings for theater and costume designs.

Artist gift to Florine Stettheimer

Rago Auctions

See also
Paul Thévenaz in the Cooper Hewitt collection

Jean Cocteau in the Neal Baer collection

Florine Stettheimer in the MoMA collection

Marie Laurencin’s costume designs for “Les Biches” in the Metropolitan Museum of Art collection

Henri Rousseau in the National Gallery of Art collection

Vasily Kandinksy in the Guggenheim collection

Francis Picabia, Udnie (1913)