Svetoslav Nikolaevich Roerich (Russian, 1904-1993) Indian Dieby
Lot 55*
Svetoslav Nikolaevich Roerich (Russian, 1904-1993) Tibetan costume, 1923
Sold for £13,200 (US$ 21,970) inc. premium
Auction Details
Lot Details
Svetoslav Nikolaevich Roerich (Russian, 1904-1993)
Tibetan costume, 1923
signed with monogram and dated '23' (lower right)
pencil, gouache and watercolour on card
59.5 x 41cm (23 7/16 x 16 1/8in).

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE:
    Roerich Museum, 1928-1935
    Collection of Louis and Nettie Horch, New York
    Acquired from above by the family of the present owner, c. 1970s
    Thence by descent

    The present work was executed in 1923 in France where Svetoslav Roerich was spending the summer working on costume designs for the American dancer Ruth Page. His experience with theatre design and stage costumes inspired the artist to create an entire series of works depicting exotic national costumes from far-away lands: Indian, Turkish, Greek and Tibetan among others. Roerich studied the period costume drawings in the museums and libraries of France and after working at the Musée Guimet in Paris, the artist created 'Persian costume', and his research at the Musée Rodin resulted in the creation of 'Eastern Headpiece'. In the middle of June 1923, Roerich moved to Vichy in the French Alps, where he spent the summer concentrating on a series of 30 large-scale sketches of the stage costumes. It was there that the artist drew the present work. In one of his letters addressed to Ruth Page, Roerich noted that this costume design was done in 'old Tibetan style' and enriched with 'imaginative details'.

    It is clear that the artist was strongly influenced by the bronze sculptures of India and Tibet which he saw at the French museums. The costume of the Tibetan dancer includes complex elements and details typically present in the traditional sculptural modelling of the Buddhist deities. Roerich's later works painted in India and inspired by contemporary local costumes, in comparison, were much more simple and restrained in their décor than the present work. This early series depicting costumes traditionally used in the ceremonial dances and rituals of the Central Asian, Indian and Tibetan people is of special significance in Roerich's artistic evolution, and the present work is one it its magnificent examples.

    Данная работа «Тибетский костюм» относится к лету 1923, периоду пребывания Святослава Рериха во Франции, где она и была написана. Художник, незадолго до поездки в Индию вместе со своими родителями, путешествовал по Европе. В это время он был увлечен театральной живописью, создавая ряд балетных костюмов для американской танцовщицы Руфь Пейдж (Ruth Page). Интерес к театру подвиг его к дизайну костюмов народов мира, в основном, европейских и восточных. Им создана целая серия работ – индийский, турецкий, коптский, греческий костюмы и др.
    Материал для рисования костюмов Святослав Рерих черпал в парижских музеях. Так, после посещения музея Гимэ был написан «Персидский костюм», а после музея Родена – «Восточный головной убор». В средине июня 1923 художник отдыхал на горном курорте во французских Альпах, в Виши, где он работал с большой интенсивностью. Там было задумано 30 больших эскизов танцевальных костюмов. Именно в Виши появляется «Тибетский костюм». Святослав Рерих писал в своем письме Руфь Пейдж, что эта работа выполнена в «старом тибетском стиле» и усовершенствована «фантастическими элементами».
    Совершенно очевидно, на стилевое решение «Тибетского костюма» оказала влияние пластика бронзовой скульптуры, которую художник изучал в музейных условиях. Одежда тибетца насыщена сложными конструктивными деталями, какие можно видеть в убранстве буддийских божеств. Впоследствии работы, написанные в Индии на местном материале, оказались более простыми в исполнении. Значительная часть картин Святослава Рериха, начатая им во Франции и завершенная в Индии, составила серию восточных костюмов, сконструированных по образцам одежды, которая используются в церемониальных танцах народов Центральной Азии. Работа «Тибетский костюм» с большой вероятностью относится к указанной серии.

    Dr. Vladimir Rosov,
    State Museum of Oriental Art, Moscow
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