Changes from state V, in engraving: several horizontal lines added to upper triangle.
For Bourgeois, this imagery recalled the house she lived in as a child in Antony. "The attic was very large because of the slope of the house. Antique chair frames were hung from the ceiling everywhere. My father collected them. He would take them down from the ceiling very delicately and examine them." Bourgeois talked about supporting sculptures and different ways of achieving that. If a sculpture is standing and there is "a fear of it falling," it could always be hung from the ceiling instead. "It is a form of reassurance." (Quote cited in Wye, Deborah and Carol Smith. "The Prints of Louise Bourgeois." New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 1994, p. 126.)
The artist appears to have incorrectly dated this impression, possibly in later years, as it conflicts with the date inscribed on a number of previous states.
The sheet dimensions of this impression could not be documented because this impression is not in MoMA's Collection and could not be examined in person. The plate dimensions are from the state VI impression in MoMA’s Collection. This image has been cropped and does not show the full sheet.
An amendment has been made here to the cataloguing found in Wye and Smith, "The Prints of Louise Bourgeois," 1994, p. 126. At that time, cataloguers were unaware of an earlier state, which surfaced in 2012. With the discovery of state I, each successive state is later (state I is now state II, state II is now state III, etc.).
In the second half of the 1940s, Bourgeois spent time at Atelier 17, the print workshop of Stanley William Hayter. The workshop had transferred operations from Paris to New York during the war years. It is not known precisely which prints she made at the workshop since she also worked at home on a small press. The designation of “the artist at Atelier 17” as printer means that the impression was likely made at the workshop. The designation is based on dates, inscriptions, techniques favored at Atelier 17, and/or stylistic similarities to images in the illustrated book “He Disappeared into Complete Silence,” which the artist repeatedly cited as having been made at Atelier 17. It is also possible that Bourgeois worked on certain plates both at home and at the workshop, or pulled impressions at both places.
Former Cat. No.:
W & S 56
New York Public Library; The Metropolitan Museum of Art
This Work in Other Collections:
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs, The New York Public Library (state III) The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (state VI)
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