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LOUISE BOURGEOIS: COMPLETE BOOKS & PRINTS

Louise Bourgeois: Complete Books & Prints
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NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION

Cat. No. 1276, unique variant 2, in 1255

Untitled, no. 2 of 4, from the series, What Why When Where Who and How!!

State/Variant:
Unique variant
Date:
2008
Series:
What Why When Where Who and How!! (View All)
Themes:
Abstraction, Fabric Works
Techniques:
Etching
Description:
panel (a): Soft ground etchings, with hand additions
panel (b): Pencil
panel (c): Soft ground etching, with hand additions
Support:
panel (a): Fabric mounted on paper
panels (b) and (c): Paper
Dimensions:
plate (a) (in 2 vertical parts) (overall): 55 1/16 × 16 11/16" (139.9 × 42.4 cm); plate (a and c) (each): 60 × 12" (152.4 × 30.5 cm); sheet (approx.): 60 1/4 × 57" (153 × 144.8 cm)
Signature:
panel (a): "Louise Bourgeois" lower center comp.
panel (c): "Louise Bourgeois" lower center comp., pencil.
Inscription:
panel (b): "What is it you want? / Do you know what it is? / Is it possible? / ? / why not?" center sheet, pencil, artist's hand.
Publisher:
Osiris, New York
Printer:
Wingate Studio, Hinsdale, NH
Edition:
Unique
Impression:
Not numbered
State Changes and Additions:
Matrices:
This 3-panel composition is made up of 2 plates that were issued as separate editions. They are noted below and can be seen in Related Works in the Catalogue.

panel (a): plates from "Pendule" and "My Secret Life"
"Pendule" is printed on sheer fabric that overlaps "My Inner Life" printed on paper. The hand additions are on the impression "My Inner Life" and are obscured by the sheer fabric.

panel (c): plate from "My Secret Life"
Background:
Benjamin Shiff, the director of the Osiris imprint, collaborated with Bourgeois in a highly experimental phase of printmaking that occupied the last years of her life, from 2005 to 2010. He first established a working relationship with the artist in the 1990s, but the late period is particularly noteworthy for the innovative and complex large-scale projects that evolved at that time. Shiff made use of professional workshops for printing, but he oversaw the creation of the printing plates as Bourgeois worked on them in her home studio. He also provided assistance as she added extensive hand additions and texts, and as she combined individual compositions into multi-panel works and illustrated books.
Installation Remarks:
This composition is one of 4 that constitute a single work of art. All of these compositions are to be exhibited together in the indicated sequence.
Curatorial Remarks:
The hand additions and paper type could not be documented because this work is not in MoMA's Collection and could not be examined in person. The plate dimensions are from an impression in MoMA's Collection. The overall mediums and sheet dimensions for the series were provided by the Louise Bourgeois Studio.

On panel (a), the hand additions are obscured by sheer fabric and can not be determined. The medium of the signature could also not be determined.

No. 5 of 5, from the series, The Vocabulary of Seduction; No. 2 of 4, from the series, What...
2007

Unique Variants

Published NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, no. 5 of 5, from the series, The Vocabulary of Seduction. 2007
NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Untitled, no. 5 of 5, from the series, The Vocabulary of Seduction
Unique variant
2007
Published NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, no. 2 of 4, from the series, What Why When Where Who and How!! 2008
NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Untitled, no. 2 of 4, from the series, What Why When Where Who and How!!
Unique variant
2008

Series
2007

NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Louise Bourgeois. The Vocabulary of Seduction. 2007
NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION The Vocabulary of Seduction
2007
More About This Work

Series
2008

NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Louise Bourgeois. What Why When Where Who and How!! 2008
NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION What Why When Where Who and How!!
2008
More About This Work

Louise Bourgeois,

What Why When Where Who and How!!,

New York, Osiris, 2008

Bourgeois's entire text for this series appears on the panels cited below.

No. 1:
what
why
when
where
who
and how!
A
story
by
Louise Bourgeois

No. 2:
What is it you want?
Do you know what it is?
Is it possible?
?
why not?

No. 3:
love
love
what I love
love
what I love most
what I love
I love love
Are you looking for a
substitute?
?
?
?
of love
of rejection
of anger
of depression
of optimism
of abundance
of silence

No. 4:
my
need
to repair
is
a plea
for a second chance
I have come of age