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Catalog Data

Artist:
Pavel Fyodorovitch Tchelitchew, 21 Sep 1898 - 31 Jul 1957  Search this
Sitter:
Alice Babette Toklas, 30 Apr 1877 - 7 Mar 1967  Search this
Medium:
Gouache on paper
Dimensions:
50.1 x 32.5 cm (19 3/4 x 12 13/16")
Mat: 71.1 x 55.9 cm (28 x 22")
Type:
Drawing
Date:
c. 1926-28
Exhibition Label:
Born San Francisco, California
Within hours of arriving in Paris in 1907, Alice B. Toklas met Gertrude Stein and embarked on a lifelong romance. Despite her outward reticence, Toklas was the powerhouse behind Stein’s success. She served as her partner’s editor, proofreader, typist, muse, and gatekeeper. She also provided the food, flowers, and decor that impressed guests and boosted Stein’s prestige.
Toklas’s creative energy and unobtrusiveness are evident in this portrait by the expatriate Russian artist Pavel Tchelitchew. With downcast eyes and no visible mouth, she silently focuses on her needlework.
Toklas became famous worldwide after Stein published The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas (1933). The book was a humorous account of their life together. Later, Toklas achieved her own literary success with The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book (1954). The memoir, which included stories about life and food in France, became a cult favorite, especially for its infamous recipe for “Haschich Fudge.”
Nacida en San Francisco, California
A horas de llegar a París en 1907, Alice B. Toklas conoció a Gertrude Stein e inició con ella un romance para toda la vida. Pese a su apariencia reservada, Toklas fue el dínamo tras el éxito de Stein. Era su editora, correctora, mecanógrafa, musa y guardiana. También se encargaba de la comida, las flores y el decorado que impresionaban a los visitantes y realzaban el prestigio de Stein.
La energía creativa y la discreción de Toklas son evidentes en este retrato del ruso expatriado Pavel Tchelitchew. Con la mirada baja y la boca borrada, la figura se concentra silenciosa en su costura.
Toklas se hizo famosa mundialmente cuando Stein publicó La autobiografía de Alice B. Toklas (1933), un relato humorístico de su vida juntas. Luego Toklas alcanzó su propio éxito literario con El libro de cocina de Alice B. Toklas (1954). Estas memorias, que incluyen relatos de la vida y la comida en Francia, pasaron a ser un libro de culto, sobre todo por su infame receta de “caramelo con hachís”.
Topic:
Home Furnishings\Furniture\Seating\Chair\Armchair  Search this
Equipment\Textile Working\Needlework  Search this
Alice Babette Toklas: Female  Search this
Alice Babette Toklas: Literature\Writer  Search this
Alice Babette Toklas: Education and Scholarship\Educator\Lecturer  Search this
Portrait  Search this
Credit Line:
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Object number:
NPG.80.13
Restrictions & Rights:
Usage conditions apply
See more items in:
National Portrait Gallery Collection
Exhibition:
Brilliant Exiles: American Women in Paris, 1900-1939
On View:
NPG, West Gallery 240
Data Source:
National Portrait Gallery
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/sm43b6f8d9f-e12c-43e1-90f0-fc99220e20bd
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:npg_NPG.80.13