Chaim Soutine's Initial Rejection of his Future Friend and Sponsor

Apr 24, 2013 10:03PM

“Madeleine had three reasons for living: The first, the leitmotif of her life, to love and be loved by her husband Marcellin. Then comes Soutine, whom she considered to be the greatest painter of the century.”  – Jacques Grange

The destitute Chaim Soutine met the Castaings in the early 1920s when they offered him a hundred francs at a café in Montparnasse as an advance on a painting that they would choose from his studio. He angrily refused the money, offended that they would propose buying a painting that they had never even seen.

Seven years later, a second meeting marked the start of an enduring friendship. The couple devoted to the artist, collected more than 40 works by the artists including Le petit pâtissier part of the series portraying the working class French.