William Malherbe, Lady In A Blue Wrap

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A divine early 20th-century portrait of a lady in a blue wrap by Parisian painter, William Malherbe (1884-1951). With a variety of confident brushstrokes and a sumptuous palette, the artist has brought this beautiful Art Deco lady to life. As with many of his works, she leans forward, almost appearing to emerge into the room.

Malherbe had an interesting and distinguished career, spent between Paris and Vermont. As a young man, his first major commission came in the form of patriotic posters to support the French cause in the First World War.

But around the same time, he was also developing an exciting reputation for his post-impressionistic depictions of glamorous women. Many were comparing his style to Renoir’s later works and his popularity led to exhibitions at the Salon d’Automne and the renowned Galerie Durand-Ruel.

In 1939, he left France for Thetford, Vermont, where he stayed for the next nine years before returning to Paris.

Today, his works can be found in public and private collections worldwide including the Musée de l’Art Moderne in Paris.

The painting is housed within what appears to be its original frame and it has previously appeared at Sotheby’s. Signed and dated in the upper right.

Oil on canvas
Size including frame
35” x 31½” / 89cm x 80cm
Year of creation
c. 1924
Condition Very good overall with no issues. Examination under UV shows no sign of restoration.
Artist’s auction highlight
£7,609 achieved at L'Huillier & Associés, France, in 2019 for ‘Le Tub’.