The Cleveland Museum of Art

Collection Online as of August 26, 2016

Double Portrait with Hat, c. 1936-1937

gelatin silver print, montage with handwork on negative, Image: 29.80 x 23.80 cm (11 11/16 x 9 5/16 inches). Gift of David Raymond 2008.172

To produce this complex image, Maar sandwiched together two negatives of the same model, one frontal and one profile, scavenged from a magazine assignment on springtime hats, and painted the background and hat (or decomposing halo?) onto the negative. Softening the emulsion, she scraped
and lifted it off, techniques that involve destruction and suggest disintegration. The face evokes Picasso’s depictions of female faces, especially his 1938 paintings of weeping women for which Maar was the model. Although the divided face is not Maar’s, it is tempting to interpret it as a reflection of her
emotional state at the time, torn between her career and independence and Picasso’s demands and potent personality.
frontal and one profile, scavenged from a magazine
assignment on springtime hats, and painted the
background and hat (or decomposing halo?) onto
the negative. Softening the emulsion, she scraped
and lifted it off, techniques that involve destruction
and suggest disintegration. The face evokes Picasso’s
depictions of female faces, especially his 1938
paintings of weeping women for which Maar was
the model. Although the divided face is not Maar’s,
it is tempting to interpret it as a reflection of her
emotional state at the time, torn between her career
and independence and Picasso’s demands and potent
personality.

The Cleveland Museum of Art, OH (10/19/2014-1/11/2015): "Forbidden Games: Surrealist and Modernist Phorography," cat. no. 9, p. 27 & 102.

Library materials about Dora Maar (13)

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