Fernand Leger – L’Opera “La Ville”


Fernand Leger Lithograph L’Opera is from a portfolio entitled “La Ville” (The City) which consists of 29 lithographs featuring scenes of people, life and emotions of Paris.

Medium: Original Stone Lithograph

Year: 1959

Dimensions: 66 x 50.8 cm

Printer: Mourlot

Edition: 180

Arches Paper – Good Condition A

The artist had started the project in 1954 but unfortunately passed away in the summer of 1955. His wife, along with Fernand Mourlot and the publisher Teriade, assembled the rest of Leger’s studies and finished plates to complete the project and it was eventually printed and released in 1959, four years after his death.

In Leger’s later years he ventured from the abstract to compositions depicting scenes of popular life featuring acrobats (as seen in portfolio “Le Cirque”), builders, etc – concentrating more on the common man.

Fernand Leger Lithograph L’Opera was composed of 180 numbered works and a further 20 H.C. proofs numbered in Roman numerals. There were a further 4 printer’s proofs of each image.

Ref. Saphire. p.238 (Fernand Leger – L’oeuvre Gravé)



b. 1881, Argentan, France


Fernand Léger was a French painter, sculptor and print maker. Considered a foundational figure in the development of Cubism alongside contemporaries Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso, painter Fernand Léger pioneered an abstract style all of his own: His aesthetic, which features bold primary colours and disjointed, conical forms, has been informally called “Tubism.” Léger’s graphic, flattened scenes of contemporary city life, circuses, and common objects offered an accessible approach to Cubist styles. His bold simplified treatment of modern subject matter has caused him to be regarded as a forerunner of pop art. His mature work underwent many changes, from his Cubist-derived abstraction in the 1910s to distinctive realist imagery in the 1950s. His service during World War I sparked an interest in the machines and elements of industry that appear across his later canvases.

In the decade before his death, Léger’s wide-ranging projects included book illustrations, monumental figure paintings and murals, stained-glass windows, mosaics, polychrome ceramic sculptures, and set and costume designs. In 1955 he won the Grand Prize at the São Paulo Bienal. Léger died on August 17 of that year at his home in Gif-sur-Yvette, France. The Musée Fernand Léger was inaugurated in 1960 in Biot, France.