1925 Set of 12 screens on landscapes and mountains by Qi Baishi
2017 SOLD for RMB 930M including premium by Poly
1925 Miro's Hallucinations
2012 SOLD 17 M£ including premium
Indeed, the artist has lost interest in realism and is exploring the dream and the subconscious. Miro's approach is deeply original and will be recognized as such by Picasso. He is the first surrealist to transcend the boundaries between poetry and painting.
The literary and artistic expression must be free from conventions, but not indispensably spontaneous. The words of the poem escape without building a usual phrase. The language of the image, close to abstraction, invites for multiple interpretations.
If the poem deals with the female body, for example, the observer led on by the erotic force of the words will look for some marks, and find and lose. Those two spots of color : are they the breasts or are they the eyes?
Miro is no longer interested in reality. His themes are inspired by other poems or songs. On February 7 in London, Christie's sells "le corps de ma brune", estimated £ 6M. So amazing for its time, this oil on canvas made in 1925, 130 x 96 cm, is superimposing text and colors. The layout of the words is free, like in a poem of Apollinaire. Here is the link to the catalog.
This painting provides the key to all the later work, so often hermetic but always dreamlike, of Miro. When the letters will disappear from the field, the title will provide the link between the image and its multiple interpretations.
POST SALE COMMENT
This is one of the most outstanding and rarest works of early Surrealism. It was sold for £ 17M including premium.
1925 Miro walking into Pataphysics
2012 SOLD 13.7 M$ including premium
Surrealism is just born but pataphysics, that parody of metaphysics and of all serious systems, had been started in 1898 by Alfred Jarry with his calculation of the area of God.
Miro wants to push his work into a new semiotic and manages to attract the admiration of Breton. He is young and single, and when walking in the streets of Paris he seeks to decipher the mystery of the woman.
On November 7 in New York, Christie's sells an oil on canvas, 92 x 73 cm, entitled Peinture (femme, journal, chien), estimated $ 12M. At that time, the title is of considerable importance in the art of Miro. In the first reading of this work, the image and the word are matching.
It is a painting, of course. The woman is a silhouette in bodice and skirt, the other elements are stylized including an absurd hat and the head replaced by a red heart that reflects the desires of the artist. She is walking the dog and waving the newspaper, a trapezoid whose text is limited to three letters, JOU, common start for JOUrnal (newspaper) and JOUeur (player).
The first owner of this painting was Raymond Queneau, who will be the most important pataphysician and a great shaker of the French language. Aged 22 in 1925, he was already frequenting the circle of the Surrealists. Finding a meaning to the mysterious JOU and to the symbolism of the heart-head certainly amazed him.
I invite you to play the video shared by Christie's.
POST SALE COMMENT
Good price for this nice painting that well demonstrates the intellectual brainstorms of its time: $ 13.7 million including premium.
1925 Chaim Soutine, the Secret Painter
2012 SOLD 9.4 M$ including premium
He listened only to his inspiration exacerbated by his stomach ulcer, and his themes are new. Yet he had a predecessor: Modigliani, another Jew in Paris, his drinking companion in Montparnasse, who died in 1920.
The portraits by Modigliani show anonymous characters from chance encounters. The beauty of the line and the balance of the composition make them masterpieces. Soutine too shows half-length figures, adding the extreme violence of the colors and the extreme hardness of the line.
On his arrival in Paris, Soutine had a job of luggage carrier at Montparnasse railway station. He took as subjects of his portraits the petty employees of hotels or restaurants, these people who help wealthy customers but are never considered by anyone.
Le Chasseur de chez Maxim's (Maxim's Groom), oil on canvas 82 x 75 cm made circa 1925, was sold for $ 6.7 million including premium on 4 November 2004 at Sotheby's. Here is the link to this result in the Artvalue database.
This painting comes again for sale in the estate of the purchaser of that time. It is now estimated $ 10M, for sale on May 2 by Sotheby's in New York. Since 2004, the art market was becoming aware of the exceptional expressive interest and of the rarity of the best works by Soutine.
POST SALE COMMENT
The result, $ 9.4 million including premium, does not reach the estimate but is still extremely interesting. Sotheby's had rightly hoped a significant gain on this painting since 2004.The emotionally charged artworks are becoming better appreciated in the market.
1925 Bugatti for a Ziegfeld Girl
2017 SOLD for $ 3.3M including premium
From a technological point of view the 35 offers a very light chassis and a streamlined body that is also simple and elegant. Its decisive advance compared to its competitors in endurance racing is the brake system specially designed to resist wear. In the opposite the weakness of the tires impairs the competition record.
The Bugatti Type 35 is a great commercial success. By supplying its wealthy customers with cars of the same performance as the factory engaged cars, Bugatti is a pioneer of the sports car. The 35 is a two-seater car in accordance with the regulations applicable to the Grand Prix of that period.
During the first year the brand produced only 16 Bugatti Type 35. In 1925 production accelerated.
A Bugatti 35 of the initial variant, sometimes identified as Bugatti 35 Lyon, was bought in 1925 in Paris by a wealthy American during his honeymoon with a former dancer from the Ziegfeld Follies. The car was used in competition by him with parsimony.
After more than 90 years, this Bugatti still has only three owners from new. Its originality and its condition are sensational for a car of that time. It is estimated $ 2.6M for sale by Gooding in Scottsdale on January 20, lot 022. Here is the link to the press release.
1925 First Trip to the Rocky Mountains
2017 SOLD for $ 3M CAD including premium
The method for recording the view is classic : Harris makes sketches in pencil during his trips. Back in his studio he observes the geometric principles in his own panoramas and highlights them in bright colors.
On November 22 in Toronto, Heffel sells a view of partially snow-capped mountains over Maligne Lake in the province of Alberta. The immaculate snow draws the eye towards the upper part and reveals the tectonic folds difficult to observe in the dark of the rest of the image.
Dated 1925 this oil on canvas 103 x 133 cm was exhibited in 1926 in a Toronto gallery. Disparagers question whether the artist wants to display a dehumanized landscape or an umbrella.
Encouraged by these protests, Harris goes even further. He paints in the same year his masterpiece simply titled Mountain Form. The size 152 x 178 cm is even larger and the geometric beauty of the mountain is enhanced by the removal of secondary reliefs. This oil on canvas was sold for $ 11.2M CAD including premium by Heffel on November 23, 2016.
Let us go back to the Maligne Lake Mountains for the next sale. The oil on canvas is estimated $ 2.5M CAD, lot 118. It is illustrated in the press release announcing the sale. The next lot in that sale, 119, is its 11.4 x 19.7 cm graphite sketch estimated $ 8K CAD.
RESULTS INCLUDING PREMIUM :
Painting SOLD for $ 3M CAD
Sketch SOLD for $ 7.5K CAD
1925 The Irish Market
2011 SOLD 1 M€ (before fees ?)
Just after independence, the Yeats brothers greatly honored the Irish Free State on the international scene. In 1923,William was the first Irishman to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. In 1924, his younger brother Jack is the first Irishman to win an Olympic medal, a silver medal in the painting competition.
A market scene in the county of Mayo, at the extreme northwest of the island, was painted by Jack B. Yeats in 1925.
The nervous line of Yeats makes his art close to the expressionists, especially Kokoschka. However the intense and active life of this painting rather appeals a post-Cubist influence.
The urban setting is barely sketched, but we are actually in the middle of one of these huge fair spaces of Ireland. The colorful characters are Irish peasants, certainly.
This success in recreating a local atmosphere inspired De Valera, who got the painting in loan. With such a recommendation of the most famous of the Irish statesmen, this oil on canvas, 61 x 91 cm, can climb to the rank of a masterpiece of modern Irish art. It is illustrated in the article shared by The Irish Times.
It is estimated € 500K, to be sold by Adam's in Dublin on September 28.
POST SALE COMMENT
The auction house has just announced on Twitter that the painting was sold € 1M to a private Irish collector.
I guess that it is the hammer price.
1925 The Strident Countryside of Emil Nolde
2010 SOLD 1.04 M€ including premium
In contact with German art movements, often regarded himself as an expressionist, Emil Nolde managed to maintain his independence. His vision as a colorist made him one of the most original figurative artists of his time.
His colors are realistic, but their brilliance is pushed to the extreme. The yellows are really shrill. When he shows wildflowers in close-ups or a country landscape, he is literally attacking the scenery with a fierce light which is made dramatic by heavy cloud formations.
These topics could be romantic, but Nolde goes further. The contrast of colors and the use of a thick material take preeminence over form, making this artist a real precursor of the abstract colorists.
On November 26 in Berlin, Grisebach sells a landscape view by Nolde, estimated € 1M. On this oil on canvas, 73 x 88 cm, dated 1925, the sun rays pierce at random, dramatically illuminating the edge of a storm cloud and the narrow front side of the river that runs through the country.
POST SALE COMMENT
Good price, € 1.04 million including premium, for this expressive landscape which does not, however, reach the lower estimate.
1925 The Perfect Forms of Miriam
2017 SOLD for $ 870K including premium
The encounter with the avant-garde artists of Mexico transforms Edward's artistic vision, now oriented towards the quest for perfect forms in ordinary artefacts and in bodies. Tina is 27 years old. She is slim and pretty. Edward studies the details such as her hands crossed on the dress and he also photographs her in full nudity.
Tina probably does not respond to Edward's aesthetic ideal. He resumes a contact with Miriam Lerner whom he had briefly met before leaving for Mexico. Miriam's gorgeous body between shoulders and buttocks meets the erotic and artistic desires of the photographer. They live together a passionate love in the early months of 1925 in Edendale, Los Angeles, before he comes back to Mexico City where Tina did not stop working for his glory.
A 13 x 24 cm matte silver print showing the waving geometric shapes of Miriam's nude back in a reclining position was sold for $ 1,6M including premium by Sotheby's on April 7, 2008 over a lower estimate of $ 600K.
On April 6 in New York, Christie's sells a highly rare palladium print 18 x 23 cm pencil dated 1925 and located in Edendale, lot 7 estimated $ 400K, not inscribed to Miriam but originally presented by the artist to her.
This study shows the nude body in a twist resting on both shoulders and on the edge of a buttock. The use of palladium brings a lustrous surface with very subtle hues in the grays for a soft vision that reinforces the suggestive eroticism of this headless chest.
1925 The Artistic Escapade of Edward Weston
2013 SOLD 480 K$ including premium
In 1925, attracted by Miriam Lerner, he leaves his residence in Mexico for a short romantic break in California. The naked body of his friend inspires him. The study of curves is totally artistic, and photography escapes from its naturalist and documentary shackles.
A platinum print of Miriam's torso with crossed arms, 24 x 19 cm, was sold for $ 313K including premium by Sotheby's on 15 October 2007.
On April 4 in New York, Christie's sells a palladium print of the same image, estimated $ 400K. I will indicate later its dimensions.
Made at the same place and in the same year, a photograph of a laying female back, 13 x 23 cm, was sold for $ 1.6 million including premium by Sotheby's on April 7, 2008. This minimalist body can not be formally identified but is quite probably Miriam's.
This series opens up the extraordinary comparison by Weston between female body and nature. The beauty of curves is the unsettling common point between the nude, shells, peppers and sand dunes.
POST SALE COMMENT
This interesting nude was sold $ 480K including premium. Considering the small size of the image, 15 x 17 cm, this is a very good result.
1925 Grand Sport by Brough
2019 SOLD for $ 360K including premium
This new prototype becomes the first unit of the most prestigious model of the brand, the Brough Superior SS100 Alpine Grand Sport (AGS). It has been discussed previously in this column (unsold at Phillips de Pury in December 2010).
Commercial production is announced in September 1925. Compared to the basic SS100, its center of gravity is lowered and the tank volume is increased. The engine is a JAP Special designed at the request of George Brough.
The eighth AGS is purchased by T.E. Lawrence better known as Lawrence of Arabia. This is his fifth Brough. The thirteenth AGS, delivered to its first customer in November 1925, is estimated $ 350K for sale by Mecum in Las Vegas on January 25, lot F123. The twentieth, delivered to an agent in January 1926, was sold for £ 280K including premium by RM Auctions on October 31, 2012.
Another bike from the MC Collection makes its way into the top 10!— Mecum Auctions (@mecum) January 25, 2019
This 1925 Brough Superior SS100 Alpine Grand Sport sold for a hammer price of $325,000.
Check out all the details right here: https://t.co/LvyiBFyEuT#MecumMotorcycles #MecumVegas #Mecum #MecumAuctions pic.twitter.com/8pHnUzLQPO