"4/9" left lower sheet verso, pencil, unknown hand. "4/9" lower left colophon, pencil, artist's hand.
This portfolio project derives from the 2003 mixed media sketchbook, also titled “Fugue,” that Bourgeois made using a music paper notebook. Of the 19 prints in the portfolio, 18 relate directly to pages in the sketchbook, which has 44 drawings in all. (See Related Works in Other Mediums below.) One of the prints, no. 6, is independent of the sketchbook.
The sheets in the portfolio were printed in lithography to resemble music paper, a drawing surface that can be found in Bourgeois’s work as far back as the early 1940s. She returned to music paper in 1994–95, at the time of her "Insomnia Drawings" series, when she listened to music during the night as she drew. She used it frequently in the years that followed.
Several of the compositions in the “Fugue” sketchbook and print portfolio resemble woven fabric. Bourgeois was working on fabric works at the same time as “Fugue” and, according to the artist’s assistant, Jerry Gorovoy, she was absorbed by the over-and-under movements inherent to weaving. Gorovoy also pointed out the interwoven tree branches in the 1998–2002 print, “The Three Graces.” (See Related Works in Other Mediums below.)
This composition is one of 19 that constitute a single work of art. All of these compositions are to be exhibited together and in the indicated sequence.
The two source drawings that are included in the Evolving Composition Diagram below were drawn on the front and back of the same page in the 2003 "Fugue" sketchbook. Bourgeois traced the image from the front of the page (no. 31 in the sketchbook) onto the back (no. 32), and the resulting drawing was then used as the source for the print seen here.
"Louise Bourgeois: Recent Projects." Milwaukee, WI: Haggerty Museum of Art, Marquette University, 2007.
Catalogue accompanying the exhibition "Louise Bourgeois: Recent Projects" held at the Haggerty Museum of Art, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI, from July 26–September 30, 2007.
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