Julio González

Figure in Glory


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Not on display

Julio González 1876–1942
Original title
Personnage en gloire
Ink, graphite and watercolour on paper
Support: 264 × 190 mm
Presented by Mme Roberta Gonzalez-Richard, the artist's niece 1972

Display caption

González used drawing as a primary way of exploring his ideas. These drawings, made over a six-year period, show how his abstract idiom was rooted in reality and, especially, in the figure. González concentrated on upright structures that, if translated into sculpture, would make use of the strength and balance available from welded iron. This group gives a sense of his inventiveness as he worked towards images with a high emotional charge.

Gallery label, August 2004

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Catalogue entry

Julio González 1876-1942

T01622 Personnage en Gloire (Figure in Glory) 1940

Inscribed '1-1-40 | J.G.' b.r.
Paint wash, pen and ink and pencil on paper, 10 3/8 x 7 1/2 (26.4 x 19)
Presented by Roberta González 1972
Exh: Dessins de Sculpteurs Français de Rodin à nos Jours, Maison Pulliérane, Pully, September-October 1968 (76); Dessins de Sculpteurs de Rodin à nos Jours, Palais de la Méditerranée, Nice, December 1968-January 1969 (74)
Lit: Josette Gibert, Julio González Dessins: Projets pour Sculptures: Personnages (Paris 1975), p.115 repr.
Repr: Ronald Alley, The González Gift to the Tate Gallery (London 1974), p.39

This was made on New Year's Day 1940, early in the Second World War, which may account for its exceptionally dramatic and visionary character, perhaps an affirmation of faith in victory.

There is a sketchy pencil drawing of sculptural forms on the verso rather similar to 'Figure with a Daisy' made several months later, on 26 August 1940 (Gibert, op. cit., p.107).

[All the drawings by Julio González given to the Tate are authenticated on the back by his daughter Roberta González and inscribed with a title and date, or approximate date. The titles are used in the catalogue entries, but the dating has been made more precise wherever possible. (Julio González's drawings are usually dated from about 1934 onwards, but the great majority of the early drawings are undated).]

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, pp.320-1, reproduced p.320

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