Jean Helion

available in dumas limbach

Le Marché

Watercolor, pastels, charcoal and gouache on paper
Unframed: H73 cm x W110 cm
Framed: H90 cm x L125 cm

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About the artist

A painter born in Couterne, in Normandy, Jean Hélion first studied architecture in Paris. From 1920, he moved towards geometric abstraction by joining Mondrian, Léger, Calder.


In 1930, he founded the Abstraction-Création group with Arp, Herbin, Delaunay, Gleizes, Kupka… After a first stay in the United States, in 1932, he became one of the major players in abstraction and then exhibited At New York.

However, in 1939, Jean Hélion abandoned abstract compositions and turned to figuration before joining the French army.

Back in the United States, from 1942, Jean Hélion was again exhibited at the Galerie Paul Rosenberg and at the Galerie de Peggy Guggenheim, whose daughter, Pegeen, he married. However, his evolution towards figuration confuses the public who does not follow him in this figurative way.

His works thus become a wonder in front of everyday things and are those of an explosion of acid colors. Galeries Renou et Colle, Louis Carré and Karl Flinker exhibit it frequently. Several retrospectives, the Grand Palais in 1970, or Pompidou in 2004 have also paid tribute to him.

In 2011, the Galerie de la Présidence also devoted an exhibition to him: “From abstraction to figuration (1926-1946)”, bringing together fifty watercolors.

Jean Hélion is now considered the precursor of figurative art from the 80s.