Marina Picasso is to sell two paintings by Picasso from her personal collection at Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Sale in Paris on June 6. The sale will be held to profit the noble causes supported by Marina Picasso – specifically to benefit children and adolescents in difficulty – in line with the numerous acts of generosity she has carried out in Vietnam, France and Switzerland.
Marina Picasso believes that ‘helping to look after orphaned children or suffering adolescents and surrounding them with affection has been a constant aim of my life. The sale of these two paintings will enable me to support various organizations involved in these fields.’
Marina Picasso has already funded a number of programmes and institutions in the field. In Vietnam she founded a village for orphans in Thu Duc, a suburb of Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon), comprising 25 houses, a dormitory for older children, a medical unit, a sports ground and a swimming-pool. The village hosted 350 children for over 20 years, and is now a State orphanage.
She also provided aid to the Children’s Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City (funding equipment, nurses’ training and the reconstruction of certain buildings), sending children’s milk and financing the creation of dispensaries in various districts, the renovation of the Go Vap orphanage, and the old people’s home run by the Sisters of the Vietnam Mission.
In France, Marina Picasso has provided extensive financial aid to the Fondation Lenval in Nice for the acquisition of medical equipment and setting up a children’s zone, isolation ward and parents’ room. She has also provided aid to African children and financed the acquisition of surgical equipment. A teenage hostel that bears her name was inaugurated in 2012, in the presence of Bernadette Chirac and the Mayor of Nice. Madame Picasso has also provided financial support to enable firemen from Cannes to undertake missions to South America.
Part of Marina’s collection was shown in a memorable exhibition that toured the world in the early 1980s. But this is the first opportunity for
collectors to bid for Picassos that are being offered for sale by the artist’s granddaughter. The works date from 1938 and 1943 and reflect Picasso’s new, combative aesthetic approach and militant engagement during years of war. Palette et Tête de Taureau was painted in 1938, just a year after Guernica, whose dramatic tension is still apparent,exuding a malaise and growing terror through an unwontedly sober approach involving strong black lines on a grisaille ground (est. € 1-1.5m/$1.3-1.9m*). The second work, a powerful Femme Assise en Robe Grise, shows Dora Maar with dark rings around her eyes, portrayed as a sort of black sphinx in an Elizabethan dress that resembles a suit of armour (est. €2.5-3.5m/$3.2-4.5m).
The Picassos will be highlights of the Impressionist & Modern Art sale at Sotheby’s in Paris on June 6, which also features two exceptional sculptures by Alberto Giacometti consigned from private European collections: a magnificent Torse from 1925 (est. €600,000-800,000/$783,000-1,043,000); and, above all, his Figurine, a very rare bronze of a standing woman made by Giacometti at the start of the 1960s, and consigned from the Collection of Comtesse Viviane de Witt (est. €1-1.5m/$1.3- 1.9m).
As always, Surrealism will be strongly represented, this time with works by Giorgio de Chirico, Wifredo Lam, Marcel Duchamp, André Masson, Man Ray, Salvador Dalí, Max Ernst, Wolfgang Paalen and Francis Picabia – with his splendid Transparence (Portrait de Germaine Everling), and a composition from his abstract period drenched in electrifying colour.