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Two original portraits of Churchill painting, executed by his literary agent Emery Reves, one signed by Churchill.
La Pausa, France: c. 1949 - Two sheets of sketching paper (350 x 280 mm); one image portrait format, the other landscape.; along with two photographs of the signed portrait (305 x 230 mm) mounted on card; another copy of same (unmounted); photograph of portrait of Churchill smoking a cigar; two negatives for the above. In excellent condition. A very attractive original charcoal portrait of Churchill painting, signed by Churchill in the blank area above the image ("Winston S. Churchill"), signed by Reves lower left; with unfinished preliminary charcoal sketch of the same subject on verso. Reves's portrait is based on an unpublished photograph of Churchill painting en plein air, wearing broad-brimmed cowboy hat and long white "painting coat", seated in a wicker chair, protected from the sun by a tall screen and large umbrella. Reves has added detail to the background in the form of a line of trees and the outline of hills. It was executed while Churchill was staying at La Pausa, his "favourite South of France retreat from 1955 to 1960" (Roy Jenkins, Churchill, 2001, p. 509). La Pausa, some 15 miles east of Nice, was designed and built by Coco Chanel in the early '30s. In 1953 it was bought by Emery and Wendy Reves using the proceeds from the foreign-language rights, negotiated by Reves, for Churchill's The Second World War. "Life at La Pausa was idyllic. Churchill called the villa Pausaland and was to return there ten times, usually twice a year" (Martin Gilbert, ed., Winston Churchill and Emery Reves: Correspondence 1937-1964, 1997, p. 18). The unsigned landscape format pencil portrait – clearly executed by Reves - is based on the September 1948 photograph of Churchill painting the river Sorgue (near Aix-en-Provence) by Life magazine photographer Frank Scherschel. Painting was, of course, one of Churchill's great "escapes" and a haven from the spells of depression – his "black dogs" – that he suffered throughout his life. "Sir Winston himself has described (in Painting as a Pastime) how he turned to painting as a way of distracting a mind in turmoil with ideas, but without the means of acting upon them" (David Coombs, Churchill: His Paintings, 1967, p. 14). A number of Churchill's paintings are held at the Wendy and Emery Reves Collection at the Dallas Museum of Art. Provenance: from the collection of Churchill's literary agent Emery Reves (1904-1981). Reves had been instrumental in promoting Churchill's pre-War international profile by the world-wide syndication of many of his prophetic articles during the late 'thirties. Churchill biographer Jonathan Rose gives the background to their early association: "[At this time] Churchill was trying to disseminate his dissenting views as widely as possible, with the help of an indispensable agent. Emery Reves was a Hungarian Jew who in 1930 launched the Cooperation Press Service. Based in Berlin, he distributed articles by prominent politicians to publications outside their home countries. Within two years he had about a hundred political writers in his stable publishing them in 400 newspapers in 70 nations. 'Naturally the organization was rather profitable,' he recalled On 1 April 1933 Nazi stormtroopers attacked Jewish businesses throughout Germany, and Reves took the night train to Paris, where he opened a new office on the Champs-Eylsees. Reves was keen to recruit Churchill, and Austen Chamberlain set up a meeting on 25 February 1937 in Churchill's London flat at Morpeth Mansions. Having just emerged from his bath, Churchill was as skeptical as he was naked, so Reves handed him a fat folder of Austen's clippings. Promptly telephoning Lord Beaverbrook's office, Churchill was dismayed to learn that 'Chamberlain's articles are much more widely distributed than mine.' In June Churchill and Reves signed a contract, and the latter became the conduit for distributing Churchill's jeremiads against Hitler to Europe, the British Empire and the United States. A senior Foreign Office official urged Reves to stop – for [Attributes: Signed Copy]
      [Bookseller: Peter Harrington. ABA member]
Last Found On: 2017-11-25           Check availability:      ZVAB    

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