Jules Perahim- Fantastic composition

  • oil on canvas
  • size: 69/60
  • signed lower right


Jules Perahim, (b. May 24, 1914, Bucharest – d. March 2, 2008, Paris) was a Romanian painter, of Jewish origin, who excelled in the style of surrealism, but also of socialist realism.

Born Iuliș Blumenfeld, Jules Perahim was a student of painters Nicolae Vermont and Costin Petrescu. Perahim quickly distanced himself from them in the early 1930s, becoming one of the young figures of the Romanian surrealist avant-garde.

He became known by the stage name Perahim, a word meaning “flowers” in Hebrew, which comes from the translation of his family name Blumenfeld (field of flowers).

He collaborates with the avant-garde magazines Unu (1930 – 1932) and Alge (1930 – 1933), which he founded with Gherasim Luca and Aurel Baranga.

In 1932, the first personal exhibition of paintings and drawings of a surreal, metaphysical tendency took place in Bucharest. He exhibited paintings and drawings in Bucharest and Brașov in 1936 with obvious accents of social criticism. In 1938, he exhibited in Prague, where he met the Dadaist artist John Heartfield.

Returning to Romania during the rise of fascism, he is threatened by anti-Nazi and anti-capitalist drawings published in the press (“Free Word”, “Reporter”, “Penguin”) and is forced to take refuge in the USSR, where the disasters of war push him to Armenia, where he earns his living as the decorator of a theater for the wounded.

In March 1944, he was mobilized in Moscow to be the editor-in-chief of the front-page magazine “New Speech.” In this capacity, he returns to Romania when it detaches from the Axis.

He works as a professor of scenography and graphic arts at the Institute of Fine Arts in Bucharest (1948 – 1956) and as editor-in-chief of the magazine “Plastic Art” (1956 – 1964). During this time, he devoted himself exclusively to applied arts, book illustration, theater sets, murals and ceramics.

He returned to painting in the sixties. He settled in France in 1969 and then successfully held about forty solo exhibitions in various countries around the world. Since the 90’s, Perahim’s work is also present in Romanian museums.

The painting is a two-dimensional composition, with a vivid chromatic, appearing the pair of complementary purple and yellow.
There is a static character and a dynamic one, the background being simple, monochrome.