Finding Aid for the Collection of Georges-Claude Tessier Drawings Biomed.0601

Finding aid prepared by Jasmine Larkin, 2020.
UCLA Library Special Collections
Online finding aid last updated 2020 November 12.
Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
Box 951575
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575

Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
Title: Collection of Georges-Claude Tessier drawings
Creator: Tessier, Georges-Claude
source: Maggs Bros.
Identifier/Call Number: Biomed.0601
Physical Description: 1 unknown (5 drawings)
Date: 1916
Language of Material: Materials are in French.

Conditions Governing Access

Unprocessed collection. Material is unavailable for access. Please contact Special Collections reference ( for more information.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased from Maggs Bros., 21 May 2017.

UCLA Catalog Record ID

UCLA Catalog Record ID: 8227609 

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Collection of Georges-Claude Tessier drawings (Collection 601). Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library History and Special Collections for the Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles.

Scope and Contents

Collection contains "5 pencil and crayon drawings of First World War hospital scenes. The most finished drawing is one of 5 male figures in a ward with sunlight streaming through the window, two with right arms amputated above the elbow, the other three with major flesh wounds, being watched over by a near-angelic nurse. This drawing is signed with a monogram which might read LGT, and a caption reading 'Hopital VG2 1916'."
"The Val de Grace military hospital in Paris was a major centre of reconstructive surgery during the First World War, and has a celebrated medical museum with wax models of damaged physiognomies. Mark Polizzotti, biographer of Breton, tells that Andre Breton and Louis Aragon worked at the hospital in 1918 as part of the training up of more doctors to cope with the attrition of war: some of the foundations of surrealism were laid when they got themselves posted to night duty in the "4e Fiévreux" and '2e Blessés' wards, which catered for the feverish and the wounded mad, and read to each other from Lautréamont's Contes de Maldoror 'as the madmen wailed and the sirens howled'. We posit that the drawing's VG2 refers to this Ward 2: the figures here are certainly wounded. The other drawings show a pair of men in beds; a heavily bandaged man on a stretcher; three studies of men moving (including an amputee) titled "aux pansements" [to bandages]; four studies of heads, one bandaged after the seeming loss of his nose, one with a full bandage and plugs in his nose, one with a bandage round his predominantly missing nose, and one with a massively damaged mouth, in a style reminiscent of Francis Bacon. The attribution to Tessier, a mural artist who we are told worked on the Palace of Cambodia at the 1900 World Fair, is slightly tenuous."
Source: Maggs Bros., catalogue description, 2017.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use

Property rights to the physical objects belong to UCLA Library Special Collections. All other rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Maggs Bros.