Pierre Mac Orlan (Primary Title)

Man Ray, American, 1890 - 1976 (Artist)

Gelatin silver print
Mount: 15 9/16 × 11 5/16 in. (39.53 × 28.73 cm)
Image: 8 15/16 × 6 7/16 in. (22.7 × 16.35 cm)

The French novelist and art critic Pierre Mac Orlan (1882–1970) was an uncompromising champion of the avant-garde in Paris between the two world wars. Man Ray’s portrait captures the commanding presence and imposing character of the rugby-playing writer, who published several polemical essays on photography in the 1920s promoting the work of Man Ray and his colleagues, including Berenice Abbott and Eugène Atget. Seated in an armchair, with a clenched fist and an intense gaze, Mac Orlan gives the sense that, like a coiled spring, he could jump up and pontificate at any moment. Mac Orlan later congratulated Man Ray on his portrait, which he considered “more sensitive than countless paintings.”

Mounted on stiff card, on original mount
Stamp in gray ink on mount verso: "Man Ray/ 31 bis, Rue/ Campagne/ Première/ PARIS". (M#2- check Text Entry notes for stamp details) Pierre Mac Orlan's address stamp in green ink on mount verso: "P. Mac Orlan/ St-CYR-SUR-MORIN (8.-ET-M.)"
Signed and inscribed by photographer in graphite on mount below image right: "Man Ray/ Paris".
Arthur and Margaret Glasgow Endowment
Man Ray: The Paris Years, VMFA, October 30, 2021 – February 21, 2022

Some object records are not complete and do not reflect VMFA's full and current knowledge. VMFA makes routine updates as records are reviewed and enhanced.