We are grateful to Mr. Erik La Prade for his assistance in cataloguing this work.
Pavel Tchelitchew was a master draftsman and drew numerous portraits of patrons and friends throughout his lifetime. This drawing of George Platt Lynes is a fine example of Tchelitchew’s portraiture. During the mid-to-late1920s, Tchelitchew was living in Paris, drawing society portraits to earn a living. He had a number of patrons, among them, Gertrude Stein. Lynes and Tchelitchew met around 1926, when Gertrude Stein sent Lynes to visit his studio. Subsequently, it was Tchelitchew who introduced Lynes to Glenway Wescott and Monroe Wheeler, according to Tchelitchew’s biographer, Parker Tyler.
This drawing or study was made in 1937, the same year Tchelitchew was commissioned to paint a large, oil on canvas portrait of Lynes, portraying him in an allegorical role as a photographer.
The fact that Tchelitchew inscribed this drawing to Monroe Wheeler in Paris, June 1955, adds a poignancy to the work since Lynes would die from cancer in December 1955.