Massimo Campigli (1895-1971)
Massimo Campigli (1895-1971)
Massimo Campigli (1895-1971)
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Massimo Campigli (1895-1971)

Ritratto di Joella Levy

Massimo Campigli (1895-1971)
Ritratto di Joella Levy
signed, dated and titled 'CAMPIGLI Joella 20-7-1931' (lower left)
oil on canvas
18 3/8 x 15 3/8 in. (46.6 x 39.1 cm.)
Painted on 20 July 1931
Julien Levy Gallery, New York (acquired from the artist).
Edgar A. Levy, New York (acquired from the above).
Joella Bayer, New York (acquired from the above).
By descent from the above to the present owner.
J. Levy, Memoir of an Art Gallery, New York, 1977, p. 64.
N. Campigli, E. and M. Weiss, Campigli: Catalogue Raisonné, Milan, 2013, vol. II, p. 452, no. 31-027 (illustrated).
New York, Julien Levy Gallery, Massimo Campigli: Paintings, November 1931.
New York, The Museum of Modern Art, 20th Century Portraits, December 1942-January 1943 (illustrated, p. 103; titled Joella Lloyd).

Lot Essay

Joella Haweis (1907-2004) was married to the New York gallerist Julien Levy from 1927 to 1942. In 1931, Levy staged Campigli's first American exhibition and commissioned the Italian artist to paint his Italian-born wife's likeness. In his memoirs, Levy recalled the symbiosis that resulted from the portrait: "An apotheosis for Joella, and an insight for me into the interplay of artist and subject, was offered when Joella sat for her Campigli portrait. His concept molded her future bearing, the carriage of her head, and embellished the directness of her gaze; while the impact of her Praxitelean features invaded his archaisms so that for a time the women in his canvases wore a resemblance to Joella, and Joella made her entrances a living Campigli." (J. Levy, op. cit.) Joella—whose mother Mina Loy was a poet and muse to Dada artists—later divorced Levy and married the artist and architect Herbert Bayer.

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