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Thérèse Dreaming

Balthus (Balthasar Klossowski) (French, Paris 1908–2001 Rossinière )

Date:
1938
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
59 x 51 in. (149.9 x 129.5 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection, 1998
Accession Number:
1999.363.2
Rights and Reproduction:
©Balthus
  • Description

    With closed eyes, Balthus's pubescent model is lost in thought. Thérèse Blanchard, who was about twelve or thirteen at the time this picture was made, and her brother Hubert were neighbors of Balthus in Paris. She appears alone, with her cat, or with her brother in a series of eleven paintings done between 1936 and 1939.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Signed and dated (lower left): Balthus. 1938.

  • Provenance

    [Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York, 1938–51; stock no. 823; purchased from the artist on September 30, 1938, for $438.40, as "Young Girl Resting"; sold in 1951, for $2,500, to McLane]; The Reverend James McLane, Los Angeles (1951–d. 1979); his son, Louis McLane (1979; sold to Pierre Matisse); [Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York, 1979; sold to Gelman]; Jacques and Natasha Gelman, Mexico City and New York (1979–his d. 1986); Natasha Gelman, Mexico City and New York (1986–d. 1998; her bequest to MMA)

  • Exhibition History

    New York. Pierre Matisse Gallery. "Balthus," March 8–April 1, 1949, no. 16.

    Museum of Modern Art, New York. "Balthus," December 19, 1956–February 3, 1957, no. 10.

    Cambridge, Mass. New Gallery, Hayden Library, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. "Balthus," February 10–March 2, 1964, no. 10.

    London. Tate Gallery. "Balthus," October 4–November 10, 1968, no. 12.

    Marseilles. Musée Cantini. "Balthus," July–September 1973, no. 5.

    Paris. Centre Georges Pompidou. "Balthus," November 4, 1983–January 23, 1984, no. 14/52.

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Balthus," February 29–May 13, 1984, no. 19.

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Twentieth Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection," December 12, 1989–April 1, 1990, unnumbered cat. (p. 203).

    London. Royal Academy of Arts. "Twentieth Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection," April 19–July 15, 1990, unnumbered cat.

    Mexico City. Centro Cultural Arte Contemporáneo. "La Colección de Pintura Mexicana de Jacques y Natasha Gelman," June 23–October 11, 1992.

    Martigny. Fondation Pierre Gianadda. "De Matisse à Picasso: Collection Jacques et Natasha Gelman," June 18–November 1, 1994, unnumbered cat. (p. 227).

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Painters in Paris: 1895 1950," March 8–December 31, 2000, extended to January 14, 2001, unnumbered cat. (p. 111).

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Balthus Remembered," March 27–May 27, 2001, no catalogue.

    Cologne. Museum Ludwig. "Balthus," August 18–November 4, 2007.

    Martigny. Fondation Pierre Gianadda. "Balthus: 100e anniversaire," June 16–November 23, 2008, no. 43.

    New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Balthus: Cats and Girls—Paintings and Provocations," September 25, 2013–January 12, 2014, no. 9.

  • References

    Yves Bonnefoy. "L'invention de Balthus." L'Improbable et autres essais. Rev. and enl. ed. (1st ed., 1959). Paris, 1980, p. 49.

    Jean Leymarie. Balthus. 2nd enl. ed. New York, 1982, ill. p. 130.

    Stanislas Klossowski de Rola. Balthus. London, 1983, pl. 22.

    Jacques Paul Dauriac. "Paris, Centre Georges Pompidou. Exposition: Balthus." Pantheon 42 (1984), ill. p. 186.

    René Micha. "Balthus: des gloses essentielles sur l'un des grands peintres de ce temps." Art International 27, no. 2 (1984), ill. p. 6.

    Sabine Rewald. Balthus. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1984, pp. 41–42, no. 19, fig. 67, and ill. p. 93.

    Sabine Rewald in Twentieth Century Modern Masters: The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection. Ed. William S. Lieberman. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1989, pp. 201–3, 293, ill. (color and bw).

    Judith H. Dobrzynski. "20th Century Art Treasures Are Left to Met." New York Times (May 6, 1998), p. B6, ill.

    William S. Lieberman. "Donation Gelman: l'École de Paris au Metropolitan." Connaissance des arts, no. 554 (October 1998), p. 106, fig. 6 (color).

    Roberta Smith. "In a Brash Yet Refined School, Everyone Belongs Together." New York Times (June 15, 2001), p. E37.

    Sabine Rewald. Balthus: Cats and Girls—Paintings and Provocations. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 2013, pp. 11, 37, 74, 78–81, 88, 98, 102, no. 9, ill. (color).

  • See also
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    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
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