Mujer con abanico (Woman with a Fan)

María Blanchard (María Gutiérrez Blanchard)

Santander, Spain, 1881 - Paris, France, 1932

María Blanchard was a great friend of Juan Gris and a faithful follower of the principle aesthetics of his work, as can be seen in the painting Mujer con abanico (Woman with a Fan, 1913-1915), in which the motif is broken up into multiple planes that reference other viewpoints, while the colour range includes very bright tones, a chromatic peculiarity of the oil paintings Gris produced around 1915.
Mujer con abanico also constitutes one of the fairly frequent cases in which Blanchard did two versions of the same motif, both executed in very similar works. In this case, as well as the version at the Museo Reina Sofía, there is a second version entitled La dama del abanico (Lady with a Fan), also dated 1916, which is in a private collection in the city of Santander. Other such cases, where the artist repeats the same image twice with slight differences, include the pair Femme à la guitare (Woman with Guitar, 1917, Musée du Petit Palais, Geneva) and Mujer con guitarra (Woman with Guitar, 1917) at the Museo Reina Sofía, and Composition avec personaje (Composition with Figure, 1917; the Masaveu collection) and L'enfant au cerceau (Child with Hoop), also from 1917 and also in the Musée du Petit Palais collection, in Geneva.

Paloma Esteban Leal