MoMA
A-|A+

LOUISE BOURGEOIS: COMPLETE BOOKS & PRINTS

Louise Bourgeois: Complete Books & Prints
Advanced Search

View Works Chronologically:

Compositions (1,574)
Sheets (5,410)



Showing 1 of 1

Cat. No. 575/I

Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well

State/Variant:
State I of X
Date:
1995
Themes:
Faces & Portraits, Objects
Techniques:
Drypoint
Description:
Drypoint, with pencil additions
Support:
Smooth, wove Somerset paper
Dimensions:
plate: 8 9/16 x 6 1/4" (21.8 x 15.8 cm); sheet: 15 5/16 x 10 1/8" (38 x 25.8 cm)
Signature:
Not signed
Inscription:
Verso: "+9 prints [underlined] / at moma set / no text:" center sheet, "Louise has the 9 plates at 347" lower center sheet, both pencil, both artist's hand.
Publisher:
unpublished
Printer:
Harlan & Weaver, New York
Edition:
1 known impression of state I
Impression:
Not numbered
Edition Information:
Proof before the editioning of state X.
Artist’s Remarks:
About the source drawing for plate 2 of 9, Bourgeois said: "We lived in Easton, where there was no city water and we were totally dependent on the well. The water table was low in Easton, so the well was quite deep.
The guilt feeling and the severity that inhabited the house were expressed by, 'You better be good or I'll push you down the well.' You see, that was the ultimate punishment. Certainly, I didn't push anybody into the well, but look at these here, one and two...my sons Jean-Louis and Alain. I did something wrong and sure enough, they pushed me in. I'm not accusing them....
The figure is screaming at the bottom of the well.
We have tunnel vision and we have bottom-of-the-well vision. If you visualize yourself down there, the question is, how are you going to get out? This philosophy is an optimistic philosophy. By hook or by crook, you are going to get yourself out. And I always did. But how? By drawing." (Quote cited in Bourgeois, Louise and Lawrence Rinder. "Louise Bourgeois Drawings and Observations." Berkeley: University Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive University of California, Berkeley; Boston: Bulfinch Press, 1995, p. 76.)

"When you are at the bottom of the well, you look around and you say, who is going to get me out? In this case, Jerry [Gorovoy, the artist's assistant,] comes and he presents a rope, and I hook myself on the rope and he pulls me out. You see I can conceive of a way of getting out of the well. I'm not drowning. I'm just waiting for somebody." Interview with Lawrence Rinder, 9 May 1995 (Quote cited in Morris, Frances. "Louise Bourgeois" London: Tate Modern, 2007, p. 150.)
Curatorial Remarks:
In 1941, Bourgeois and her family purchased a small country house in Easton, Connecticut, which remains in the family.
Other Remarks:
According to the artist's assistant, Jerry Gorovoy, this composition refers to Bourgeois's idea to use a magnet to pull the well cover up from the bottom of the well at her country house.
MoMA Credit Line:
Gift of the artist
MoMA Accession Number:
536.1996
This Work in Other Collections:
Graphische Sammlung ETH Zürich, Switzerland
National Gallery of Canada, Ontario, Canada
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
New York Public Library, NY

Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well
1995-1996

Source
sketchbook date: 1950s-1980s

NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, no. 20 of 34, from the sketchbook, Album à Dessin. sketchbook date: 1950s-1980s
NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Untitled, no. 20 of 34, from the sketchbook,...
Ink on paper
sketchbook date: 1950s-1980s

Studies

NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION Louise Bourgeois. Untitled (Study for Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well). 1995-1996
NOT IN MoMA'S COLLECTION 1995-1996

States

Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1995
State I of X
1995
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1995
State II of X
1995
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1995
State II of X, variant
1995
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State III of X
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State IV of X
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State V of X
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State VI of X, variant
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State VI of X, variant
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State VII of X, variant
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State VII of X, variant
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State VIII of X
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State IX of X
1996
Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State X of X, variant
1996
Published Louise Bourgeois. Untitled, plate 8 of 9, from the portfolio, The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
State X of X
1996

Portfolio
1996

Louise Bourgeois. The View from the Bottom of the Well. 1996
The View from the Bottom of the Well
1996
More About This Work