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Metropolitan Museum of Art Announces Exhibition of Entire Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection

The Metropolitan Museum of Art presents exhibition of Entire Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection on view October 20, 2014, through February 16, 2015.

Fernand Léger (French, 1881-1955), The Village, 1914. Oil on canvas. Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection, Purchase, Leonard A. Lauder Gift, 2013; © 2013 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris
Fernand Léger (French, 1881-1955), The Village, 1914. Oil on canvas. Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection, Purchase, Leonard A. Lauder Gift, 2013; © 2013 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris

Thomas P. Campbell, Director and CEO of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, announced today that Leonard A. Lauder—after promising his collection of 78 Cubist works of art by Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Juan Gris, and Fernand Léger to the Museum in April—has added another masterpiece, Léger’s The Village, to the collection. Mr. Lauder had been interested in the painting since he first saw it several years ago and provided funding to the Museum for its acquisition. It was placed on display in the first-floor galleries of the Lila Acheson Wallace Wing for Modern and Contemporary art this week, where it will remain on view through at least the end of the year.

The Village was painted in 1914 by Léger (1881-1955) and depicts a church and neighboring buildings encircled by trees and possibly a town wall. (A second, identically sized version of the composition is in the collection of the Sprengel Museum, Hannover.) Unlike the city scenes for which Léger is better known, these two paintings are part of a rare series focusing on a country scene. The central part of the composition is painted in the colors of the French flag—blue, white, and red—a patriotic touch given that the work was created shortly before Léger was mobilized to fight in the First World War. The Village measures 31-1/2 x 39-3/8 inches (80 x 100 cm). It has been in private hands for nearly a century and is not known to have been exhibited publicly during that time.

The entire Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection will be on view at the Metropolitan Museum in an exhibition that will be open to the public from October 20, 2014, through February 16, 2015. Special Membership preview days will be held October 15-19, 2014. www.metmuseum.org