Oil on canvas
Framed: 111.8 x 94.3 x 11.8 cm (44 x 37 1/8 x 4 5/8 in.); Unframed: 80.5 x 64.5 cm (31 11/16 x 25 3/8 in.)
Gift of the Hanna Fund 1951.357
© Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Inspired by J. S. Chardin’s 1725–26 still life of a stingray at the Musée du Louvre, Chaim Soutine reinterpreted the theme in a turbulent, luminescent manner. Every line and form undulates as if propelled by some unseen force. Tied up on two points, as if being tortured or crucified, the stingray assumes an expression of almost human anguish, transforming it into a powerful metaphor for suffering, perhaps referring to Soutine’s own life as a poor Jewish artist who emigrated from Belarus to Paris in 1913.
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