Henri Hayden Chess Board in Ochre 1961

Artwork details

Artist
Henri Hayden 1883–1970
Title
Chess Board in Ochre
Echecs en ochre
Date 1961
Medium Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions Support: 736 x 923 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Presented by Victor and Mabel Waddington through the Institute of Contemporary Prints in memory of Eliza Heygate 1975
Reference
T00818
Not on display

Catalogue entry

Henri Hayden 1883-1970

T00818 Echecs en Ochre (Chess-Board in Ochre) 1961

Inscribed 'Hayden | 61' b.l.
Oil on canvas, 23 1/4 x 36 (73 x 91.5)
Presented by Victor and Mabel Waddington through the CAS in memory of Eliza Heygate 1966
Prov: Victor and Mabel Waddington, London (purchased from the artist 1963)
Exh: Henri Hayden: Soixante Ans de Peinture 1908-1968, Musée National d'Art Moderne, Paris, May-June 1968 (83, repr.)

The artist wrote (8 May 1966) that this was a picture he had originally intended to keep for himself. It was painted shortly after another still life with a chess-board against a green background, 'Green Chess-Board' 1961, which was sold by the Waddington Galleries in 1962 to an American private collector. Although he used chess-boards as a motif in 'The Chess Players' of 1913 and in several still lifes, there was no series strictly speaking.

The tables in his still lifes are, he said, related to a plastic problem which preoccupied him. 'First of all, to my mind, my tables are tables without being so. They are flat coloured surfaces taking vaguely the form of a table superimposed on another flat coloured surface forming the ground - this is a way of creating space. The table itself is only suggested, the objects seem to the spectator to be resting on a flat surface (table?). Sometimes I add certain attributes of a table (legs, ornaments, sculpture) in order to reinforce the suggestion.

'There is certainly a connection with my cubist paintings in which the supports (the table, stools ...) were always very distinct. And in my cubist works I already had recourse to attributes - a realistic accent used to reinforce an allusion to an object (a label on a lozenge = bottle, an eye or a moustache on a square = a figure, for example).'

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.357, reproduced p.357


About this artwork