The Complete Works of Philippe Smit
by Andreas Narzt and Florence Castellani
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Catalogue entry

Photo: Christopher Burke Studios, NY; © FdDPS
Photo: Christopher Burke Studios, NY; FdDPS
Original frame designed and painted by the artist.


Emma »


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Classification: Painting »
Theme: figurative »
Medium: Oil »
Support: on canvas »
Year(s): 1917 »
PS 174 (P 4003; LNC 188)
Frère et soeur (Brother and Sister)
Alternate titles: Frère et soeur; The Artist and His Sister Emma
Oil on canvas
57 1/8 x 44 7/8 in. (145 x 114 cm) (sight size)
Signed and dated lower left: Philippe 1917; on the back inscribed and signed upper left: appartient/ a [sic]/ Dien/ Philippe
On the back: a handwritten label: The artiste & sister Emma/ N° 4003/ Diene on the stretcher in the center and a small label: Diene/ 4003 on the frame towards upper center.
Donation Berendina Hubscher, 20-06-1952, (attestation 03-09-1953), n.p., s.n. private archives: no. [P 4003], A Mademoiselle Diene [Deana] Pitcairn: Tableaux, 2- L'Artiste et sa Sœur Emma.
Inv. Pitcairn, n.d. [c.1957], n.p., LNC archives: no. P 4003, Miss Diene [Deana] Pitcairn (donation by Mrs. Smit), The Artist and his sister Emma, Oil, 57 x 45 [in.].
Inv. LNC, 1984, updated Oct. 1998, LNC archives: no. P 4003, p. 3, The Main Residence - Large Living Room, The Artist & his sister Emma, Oil, 57 x 45 [in.].
Deana (Diene) Pitcairn-Duncan (donation from the above in 1952)
The Museum of Fine Arts, Springfield, Massachusetts, United States, Philippe Smit, An Exhibition of Works by a Twentieth Century Dutch Master, December 01–29, 1957, no. 7, as The Artist and His Sister Emma, Oil - 1917, 75 x 54 [in.].
Literature & Primary Sources
Philippe Smit. ALS to his father. Laren, 6 November [19]17, as Frère et soeur.
"[…] Emma a passé quelques temps ici [Hollande]/ Car j’ai fait un grand tableau/ d’elle et de moi./ le titre de ce tableau est (frère et sœur/ moi-même je me suis représenter/ debout et Emma assise. Moi/ avec la Main sur l’epaule d’Emma/ comme couleur c’est très somptueux/ moi je suis tout en noir/ et Emma elle a un châle très/ doux comme couleur c’est a dire/ vert rosé et la jupe vert[e] un peu/ bleuté[e] et passé[e] de couleur. et,/ les deux figures ce détachant d’un/ côté Moi, sur un rideau vieil or./ et Emma d’un lilas très profond. […]" [sic] (... Emma spent some time here [Holland] because I made a large painting of her and myself. The title of this painting is Brother and Sister, I am portrayed standing, Emma seated. I with my hand on Emma’s shoulder, colouring is very rich, I am completely in black and Emma has a shawl very light in colour – pinkish green and a green skirt a little bluish and faded, the two figures are standing out – me on one side against an antique gold curtain and Emma against a deep lilac. ...) (Philippe Smit 1917)

See biographical note on Emma Smit.

Additional images
The double portrait hanging above the small window of the big hall in the studio in Thoury-Ferrottes (old photograph, private archives, Paris).
Record last updated June 4, 2017. Please note that the information on this and all pages is periodically reviewed and subject to change.
Citation: Narzt, Andreas and Castellani, Florence. "Frère et soeur (Brother and Sister), 1917 (PS 174)." The Complete Works of Philippe Smit. (accessed on May 21, 2024).