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Pablo Picasso. Harlequin. Paris, late 1915

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Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881–1973)

Paris, late 1915
Oil on canvas
6' 1/4" x 41 3/8" (183.5 x 105.1 cm)
Credit Line:
Acquired through the Lillie P. Bliss Bequest
MoMA Number:

Collection work meeting criteria specified in Introduction.

Acquired from the artist by Léonce Rosenberg (1879–1947), Paris, November 1915 [1]; sold to Alphonse Kann (1870–1948), Saint-Germain-en-Laye, January 22, 1918 [2]; confiscated during the Nazi occupation by the ERR (Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg), June 1940 [3]; restituted by the Commission de récupération artistique, Paris to Alphonse Kann, London, July 1947 [4]; Estate of Alphonse Kann (Hélène Bokanowski, his niece), 1948 [5]; sold to Paul Rosenberg, New York; acquired by The Museum of Modern Art, New York, January 1950 (Acquired through the Lillie P. Bliss Bequest) [6].
[1] Fonds Léonce Rosenberg, Bibliotheque Kandinsky, Musée National d'Art Moderne/ Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (no. 5108, ph.2).
[2] Ibid. Lender to the exhibitions Picasso, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, June 16- July 30, 1932 (no. 99: Arlequin; Collection Alphonse Kann, Paris); and Maitres de l’art indépendant 1895-1937, Petit Palais, Paris, 1937 (no. 2: Arlequin (1915) A M. Alphonse Kann). The painting was to be included in Alfred Barr’s exhibition Picasso, Forty Years of His Art, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, November 15, 1939-January 7, 1940, but was not shipped due to the outbreak of the War. It was reproduced in the catalog (Picasso, Forty Years of His Art, p. 88, no. 126), but not shown in the exhibition.
[3] Harlequin was stored at the Jeu de Paume in Paris. ERR inventory number: KA 1063. The painting was destined for transport to the ERR repository in Nikolsburg (Czech Republic) in August 1944, but the French Resistance was able to stop the train in Aulnay outside of Paris. See Database of Art Objects at the Jeu de Paume (
[4] "Liste des objets appartenant à M. Alphonse Kann;" and "Coll. Alphonse Kann - Restitution du 11 Juillet 1947," Dossier Kann, Archives de la récupération artistique, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, La Courneuve.
[5] "Reçu de la Direction des Musées de France les tableaux ci-après désignés provenant de la collection de M. Alphonse Kann," October 22, 1948/November 9, 1948, Archives des musées nationaux, Paris.
[6] Collection files, Department of Painting and Sculpture, The Museum of Modern Art, New York.


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