La Chaise verte
Oil on canvas, signed, signed and dated 1956 on reverse
100.5 x 73.3 cms
39 1/2 x 28 7/8 inches
Yvonne Mottet was born in Lyon in 1906 and was not only trained as an artist, but gave her entire life over to being an artist.
She was the wife of the significant painter Bernard Lorjou, and together they were among the founding members of the artistic group known as “Homme-Témoin”, Man as Witness. This group was a collection of French painters who tried to promote Social Realism over Abstraction, which was so in vogue at that time. Homme-Témoin first came to prominence in 1948 when Lorjou, Mottet Michel de Gallard, Michel Thomson and Paul Rebeyelle held an exhibition at Galérie du Bac in Paris.
Their contention was that man was by nature fundamentally rooted in the basic material needs of his diurnal existence and this had to be reflected in art. Man was, they stated, “…an eater of red meat, fried potatoes, fruit and cheese.” Abstraction was, according to them, too refined and self-indulgent and in contrast, Homme-Témoin’s ideals made the artistic realisation of pragmatic subject matter connect with ordinary people.
Mottet produced portraits, often of rural figures, still-lifes and some landscape and coastal scenes. Among other shows, she held a solo exhibition at the Adams Gallery in London between 9th March and 6th April 1955
Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs et Graveurs – E Benezit
Oxford Companion to 20th Century Art – edited by Harold Osborne
Art et Progrès, La France Nouvelle Artistique – J André de Czyszkowski
Twentieth Century Painters form Cubism to Abstract Art – Bernard Dorival