Flowers in Vase - Pho, Le

Fine Art

Pho, Le

Vietnamese, active in France, 
1907 – 2001

Flowers in Vase

Oil on canvas
18 1/2 x 10 1/2 inches (47 x 26.7 cm.)
Framed: 25 1/2 x 18 inches (63.5 x 45.8 cm)
Signed lower right: LE PHO


Findlay Galleries, Chicago, mid 1970s
Private Collection, New York
Private Collection, North Carolina


Born in Vietnam in 1907, Le Pho studied in in both Vietnam and France, where he spent most of his career. In 1938, he had his first one-man show in Paris, a show which marked the beginning of his successful artistic career in Europe. Le Pho would go on to show his art across France as well as in Morocco, Brussels in Europe, and in New York.

The artist’s early work focus on depictions of the Vietnamese landscape from memories of his youth. After this period and until the early 60s, Le Pho cultivates his Romanist period, named after the French gallery owner who promoted him at the time. His final period which evolved through his later life, was when he produced more works on canvas and exported his work in large part to NY, painting women in landscapes and still lifes. American art dealer Wally Findlay discovered Le Pho in Paris and they entered an exclusive partnership in 1964. At this time, he resided primarily in Nice and traveled extensively promoting his art and visiting artist friends including Matisse. He settled in the South for the rest of his life and lived until he was 94 years old.

Le Pho succeeded in weaving Impressionism, Surrealism, and traditional Chinese painting into an almost spiritual level of artistic consciousness. His oeuvre possesses a refined elegance of a poetic quality. Principally, Le Pho dedicated his style to depicting semi-Impressionist paintings of flowers, intricately rendered in a graceful form and unconstrained transparency of color.

His still lifes are true portraits of flowers opening under an incredible luminosity. Our painting’s composition belongs to the later more prolific phase of the artist’s career, widely regarded as his golden period. The beautiful impasto in the green, red and white pigments render the work especially compelling.

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