Chez Mondrian, Paris

Object Details

Title:

Chez Mondrian, Paris

Artist/Maker:

André Kertész (American, born Hungary, 1894 - 1985)

Culture:

American

Place:

Paris, France (Place created)

Date:

1926

Medium:

Gelatin silver print

Dimensions:

10.9 × 7.9 cm (4 5/16 × 3 1/8 in.)

Copyright:

© Estate of André Kertész

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I went to [Piet Mondrian's] studio and instinctively tried to capture in my photographs the spirit of his paintings. He simplified, simplified, simplified. The studio with its symmetry dictated the composition. He has a vase with a flower, but the flower was artificial. It was colored by him to match the studio.
-- André Kertész

Decades after this photograph was made, André Kertész recalled the circumstances surrounding its creation. The composition is neatly divided in half: on the left is the intimate interior of the room in which Kertész stood, showing Mondrian's straw boater on a peg and a table with the flower mentioned above. The vase perches precariously near the edge of the table, as if Kertész moved it to include it in the photographic frame. On the right, seen through a doorway, the curving banister and stairs soften the profusion of right angles and straight lines in the foyer.

Exhibitions
Rare States and Unusual Subjects: Photographs by Paul Strand, Andre Kertesz, and Man Ray (July 7 to September 6, 1987)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), July 7 to September 6, 1987
The 1920s: Age of the Metropolis (June 20 to November 10, 1991)
  • Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal, June 20 to November 10, 1991
André Kertész: A Centennial Tribute (June 28 to September 4, 1994)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), June 28 to September 4, 1994
Arrows of Time: Photographs from the J. Paul Getty Museum (January 24 to April 2, 1995)
  • Armand Hammer Museum of Art and Cultural Center at UCLA (Los Angeles), January 24 to April 2, 1995
Capturing Time: A Celebration of Photographs (December 1, 1997 to March 1, 1998)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), December 1, 1997 to March 1, 1998
Photographers of Genius (March 16 to July 25, 2004)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), March 16 to July 25, 2004
André Kertész Photographs: Seven Decades (December 18, 2007 to April 13, 2008)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), December 18, 2007 to April 13, 2008
André Kertész (September 28, 2010 to September 11, 2011)
  • Jeu de Paume (Paris), September 28, 2010 to February 6, 2011
  • Fotomuseum Winterthur, February 25 to May 22, 2011
  • Martin-Gropius-Bau (Berlin), June 11 to September 11, 2011
Bibliography

Naef, Weston J. and Judith Keller. Rare States and Unusual Subjects: Photographs by Paul Strand, Andre Kertesz, and Man Ray, exh. brochure (Malibu: The J. Paul Getty Museum, 1987) cover.

The J. Paul Getty Museum Handbook of the Collections. 7th ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2007) p. 310, ill.