Over half a billion in Art goes under the hammer in London this month with the launch of Christies, Sothebys and Phillips February Impressionist/Modern and Contemporary Art Evening Sales. Christies features exceptional works by artists such as Amedeo Modigliani, Pablo Picasso, Wassily Kandinsky, Henri Matisse, Maurice de Vlaminck and Pierre-Auguste Renoir to name just a few. Particularly strong examples of classic Impressionism and bold and colourful German Expressionism and Modernism serve as the highlights of the forthcoming sale. of works by the biggest names in art, from Pablo Picasso to Francis Bacon.
Also The Art of the Surreal Evening Sale is the biggest edition Christie’s have ever had and it includes the highest number of museum quality and fresh to the market works ever featured in one single sale in this category. Among the others, a very fine painting on burlap by Miró, L’Echelle de l’évasion, the auction record-breaking Machine à coudre électro-sexuelle by Óscar Domínguez, a group of four extraordinary works from the collection of The Scheringa Museum of Realist Art, and the fascinating female nude scene by Delvaux Les nymphes des eaux.The Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale will offer a selection of works of exceptional quality and importance. Leading the sale is Pablo Picasso’s majestic Femme assise près d’une fenêtre, a breathtaking portrait of his muse Marie-Thérèse Walter painted in 1932. The sale also includes a large and exceptional grouping of works by Magritte, of which the poetic Le plagiat (Plagiary) is the most important. Works by artists including Salvador Dali and Pierre-Auguste Renoir are on free public show from today before some of the most expensive UK sales ever seen expected to raise between £385 million and £545 million.
Sotheby’s also has a lot on offer. The Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale this February will offer a selection of works of exceptional quality and importance. Leading the sale is Pablo Picasso’s majestic Femme assise près d’une fenêtre, a breathtaking portrait of his muse Marie-Thérèse Walter painted in 1932.
The relationship between artist and model is the focus of another highlight: Liebespaar (Selbstdarstellung mit Wally) by Egon Schiele. This exquisite gouache comes from the Leopold Museum in Vienna together with two other exceptional works on paper by the artist. Alongside these iconic images of modern art is perhaps one of Impressionism’s most celebrated subjects – the water lilies at Giverny – represented here by the monumental Nymphéas avec reflects de hautes herbes, which has never previously been seen at auction.
The sale features two wonderful collections from both sides of the Atlantic, each of which offers fascinating glimpses into the passions behind collecting art. One of the highlights of the sale is Joan Miró’s Femme rêvant de l’évasion of 1945, which comes from the collection of Miriam and Ira D. Wallach accompanied by two further works by Miró and other modern masters. Classic Impressionism is particularly well represented by the outstanding group of paintings by Monet, Sisley, Gauguin and Pissarro offered from the collection of the late Earl of Jersey. Other highlights include two pastels by Edgar Degas of his two definitive subjects – the bather and the dancer – as well as Max Beckmann’s Vor dem Ball (Zwei Frauen mit Katze). Other highlights include two pastels by Edgar Degas of his two definitive subjects – the bather and the dancer – as well as Max Beckmann’s Vor dem Ball (Zwei Frauen mit Katze).
Christie’s Europe president Jussi Pylkkänen said London looked set for its fifth year of growth since the 2008 crash. “The next two weeks is the curtain-raiser for the new year,” he added. “I expect it to be full of excitement with major objects fetching great prices.”
Phillips which has now dropped the ‘de Pury’ after the departure of Simon de Pury as Chairman is offering a highly sought after collection of work by Andy Warhol including Beatle Boots a 1987 canvas for £600,000 and JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT with works on paper in the £1.8 million price range. That’s right for a work on paper!