Maria Helena Vieira da Silva

The Tiled Room

1935

Artist
Maria Helena Vieira da Silva 1908–1992
Original title
La Chambre à carreaux
Medium
Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions
Support: 604 x 913 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Accepted by HM Government in lieu of tax with additional assistance from the Nicholas Themans Trust 2014
Reference
T14206

Display caption

The Tiled Room was a breakthrough work for Vieira da Silva. It shows what the critic Michel Seuphor described as the ‘absorption in space itself’ that was characteristic of her structured paintings in the 1940s and later. The compelling web of lines has been associated with the artist’s feverish imaginings when suffering from jaundice. Vieira da Silva was haunted by memories of her lonely childhood following the death of her father and her mother’s withdrawal into mourning. The deeper psychological charge in these spatial illusions seems to have derived from those personal experiences.

Gallery label, July 2015

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