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- Limited edition of 450 (450 numbered impressions; 90AP, 8PP)
- Signed with pencil LeRoy Neiman, lower right
- Numbered 348/450, lower left
- Includes a certificate of authenticity from Centaur Art Galleries
LeRoy’s portraits of wildlife are among his most popular and beloved works. The featured serigraph is the newest addition to the enormously successful series that includes Portrait of the Lion, Portrait of the Tiger, Portrait of the Leopard and Portrait of the Leopard. Like those prints, Portrait of the Cheetah is an up-close and intimate portrait. Executed in a glorious riot of color, the portrait tends toward the impressionistic, even while scrupulously maintaining accuracy. But where the previous portraits showed ferocious and fearsome beasts, the cheetah seems sweet, playful and almost docile.
Neiman’s trips to the grasslands of Kenya, which resulted in the book Leroy Neiman on Safari , included an extended visit with cheetahs. The artist recalls: “One time when we were on safari in Africa we spent three or four hours in a Hummer following a number of cheetahs who had isolated a cape buffalo. Cheetah are friendly cats and won’t bother you or run away if you get close in your vehicle. We were able to watch them stalk their prey. I’ve heard of wild game hunters or tourists who are anxious to witness a kill, but I was actually rather delighted when the buffalo managed to escape. I didn’t feel bad for the cheetah because they all looked very healthy. They were obviously good hunters and I was sure they’d find another meal soon enough.”
It is that kind of close personal observation of animals in the wild that gives Neiman’s works their unique vitality and veracity. Like the other members of the Portrait family, Portrait of the Cheetah will be cherished by Neiman collectors.