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    Sale 7637

    20th Century British Art

    12 December 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 134

    Henri Gaudier-Brzeska (1891-1915)


    Price Realised  


    Henri Gaudier-Brzeska (1891-1915)
    stamped with Omega mark (on the underside) and with inscription 'GAUDIER BRZSKA/(Roger Fry)' (on the underside)
    moulded earthenware with ceramic glaze
    5¼ in. (13.5 cm.) long
    Executed circa 1913.

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    From autumn 1913 to spring 1914 Gaudier-Brzeska sold sculptures through, and undertook sporadic decorative projects with, Omega Workshops though he was never a regular presence at their Fitzroy Square premises. He undertook a few designs for trays, furniture and ceramics but this is the only known ceramic piece by him to have been produced. At this time Omega ceramics were made by George Schenk of Mitcham; this piece was press-moulded with the details of eyes and claws added by hand. The original model was probably in hardened clay. Around eight copies in a range of colours are now known, including two in the collection of the Contemporary Art Society, Bristol Museum and Art Gallery (fig. 1). There are related drawings at Musée des Beaux Arts in Orléans and Kettle's Yard in Cambridge.

    Gaudier made numerous life drawings of cats, both domestic and wild, and owned a cat given him by Spencer Gore.

    We are very grateful to Dr Evelyn Silber for preparing this catalogue entry.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Acquired by the present owner's grandfather, and by descent.


    R. Fry, 'Gaudier Brzeska', Burlington Magazine, XXIX, 1916, p. 211, another version illustrated.
    E. Pound, Gaudier-Brzeska, A Memoir, London and New York, 1916, p. 129, no. 26, as 'Model of a cat for porcelain - Omega shops'.
    H.S. Ede, A Life of Gaudier-Brzeska, London, 1930, p. 204.
    M. Levy, Henri Gaudier-Brzeska: Drawings and Sculpture, London and New York, 1965, p. 29, no. 65, a study illustrated.
    R. Cole, Burning to Speak: The Life and Art of Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, Oxford, 1978, p. 88, no. 37, another version illustrated.
    J. Collins, The Omega Workshops, London, 1983, pp. 71-2, pl. 23, another version illustrated.
    Exhibition catalogue, Henri Gaudier-Brzeska Sculptor 1891-1915, Cambridge, Kettle's Yard, 1983, pp. 45-6, no. 45, another version illustrated.
    E. Silber, Gaudier-Brzeska Life and Art with a Catalogue Raisonné of the Sculpture, London, 1996, p. 266, no. 65, pl. 103, another version illustrated.


    London, Anthony d'Offay, The Omega Workshops, Alliance and Enmity in English Art, 1911-1920, January - March 1984, no. 146, another version exhibited.
    London, Crafts Council Gallery, The Omega Workshops 1913-9: Decorative Art of Bloomsbury, January - March 1984, no. C14, another version exhibited.
    Cambridge, Arts Council, Kettle's Yard, Henri Gaudier-Brzeska Sculptor 1891-1915, October - November 1983, no. 45, another version exhibited: this exhibition travelled to Bristol, City Museum and Art Gallery, November 1983 - January 1984; and York, City Art Gallery, January - February 1984.