Lucy with Flower, c. 1939-42
Oil on canvas
56 x 47 cm
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
Photo: Lasar Segall Museum, IBRAM, MinC
LASAR SEGALL (1889 in Vilna, Lithuania – 1957 in São Paulo) was painter, designer, sculptor, engraver, illustrator, scenograpger and customs designer, he was one of the eight children of a Torah scribe. He began his artistic education at the Antokolski’s Academy of Drawing in Vilna, his hometown. In 1906, he moved to Germany, to attend the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts of Berlin and later in the year to the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts. Segall travelled to São Paulo for the first time at the end of 1912, ‘impelled by a thirst of adventure. In the same year, he held the first exhibition of modern painting in Brazil, which was the starting point of the revolution in Brazilian plastic art’, with exhibitions in São Paulo and Campinas. Later, he founded, along with Otto Dix (1891-1969), Conrad Felixmüller (1897-1977), Otto Lange (1879-1944) and others, the Dresdner Sezession- Gruppe 1919, an expressionist artistic group. In 1923, he settled in São Paulo, immediately regarded as a representative of European avant-garde art. In 1924, he created the design for Futurist Ball of the Autombile Club and for the Pavilhão Modernista of Olívia Guedes Penteado (1872-1934). He was one of the founders of the Sociedade Pró-Arte Moderna (Spam) in 1932, serving as its director until 1935. Between 1928 and 1932, Segall lived in Paris, and, in 1937, he officially represented Brazil at the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne (International Exposition of Art and Technology in Modern Life) there. The Grenoble Modern Art Museum, the Musée de Jeu de Paume and several other museums and private collections had Segall’s works. During his career, war, social injustice, human misery and Jewish themes were recurrent subjects. His residence in São Paulo would be turned into the Lasar Segall Museum in 1967. Lasar Segall sent Lucy with flower, an oil painting depicting the painter Lucy Citti Ferreira (1911-2008), which was doubtless the most commented and praised of the Exhibition artworks. It has been at the National Gallery of Scotland since 1945, when the British Council gifted it to them.