The Creole

Illustration © The Estate of John David Roberts. Reproduced with the permission of the William Roberts Society. Catalogue information based on the catalogue raisonné by David Cleall. For this and full details of the exhibitions cited, see the links below.

The Creole

The Creole (aka Portrait of a Negress Hélène Yelin), 1923
Oil on canvas, 60.7 cm x 50.5 cm

The Tate Gallery 1965 catalogue states, 'The model for [The Creole ] was Mrs Helène Yelin [sic ], who also posed for a bust by Epstein of 1919.' In his Jacob Epstein Sculptor (London: Faber and Faber, 1963) Richard Buckle says of this bust (Hélène), 'Hélène was a half-caste married to a musician named W. Yellin [sic ]' (p. 102), and this is echoed in the catalogue raisonné in Evelyn Silber's The Sculpture of Epstein: With a Complete Catalogue (Oxford: Phaidon, 1986): 'Wife of W. Yellin, musician' (p. 145). A cast of the bust is in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge. The same model appears in Roberts's The Joke 1923.
PROVENANCE: Stoke-on-Trent City Museum and Art Gallery
EXHIBITION HISTORY: Chenil Galleries 1923, Manchester 1930, Tate Gallery (1) 1935, Wolverhampton 1937, Whitechapel Gallery 1937, Tate Gallery 1946, Arts Council 1948, Tate Gallery 1965, Leeds/Ben Uri Gallery 2003

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