La Nuit

Georges-Henry Dessouslavy (1898-1952)

Reading is often experienced as a form of escape from reality, a nocturnal pleasure indulged in when the world seems to stand still. In this oil painting, created during the Second World War, the artist depicts the calm of a Swiss bourgeois interior. The green motifs of the curtains, the shirt and the reflection of the French window create a rhythm that draws our gaze to the central figure, bent over his newspaper. Similarly, the woman contemplating the landscape on the balcony provides another intriguing form of escapism.

This work is representative of the intimate canvases by Dessouslavy, one of the most promising Neuchâtel painters of his generation, who represented Switzerland at the Venice Biennale in 1936. This oil painting entered the museum’s collection by donation in June 1987 as a tribute to the artist.

This work was also presented at MBAL during the exhibition Le plaisir du texte (2023).

Oil on canvas, inv. 1740