189, "Chatou (Deux Figures Sur Un Plage," by André Derain, brush and
ink, inkwash, watercolor and gouache on paper, 19 by 24 3/8 inches,
By Carter B. Horsley
November 7, 2012 day auction at Sotheby's New York of Impressionist
& Modern Art is very impressive and is highlighted many wonderful
paintings including a sensational work by André Derain
(1880-1954), a very fine oil sketch by Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947),
three superb paintings by Rudolph Bauer (1889-1953), a wonderful
circular work by René Magritte (1898-1967), two very nice works by
Henri Toulouse de Lautrec (1864-1901), a fabulous pastel by Eva
Gonzalès (1849-1883), a great interior by Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947), two fine works by Louis Valtat
(1869-1952) and a lovely marble sculpture by Auguste Rodin (1840-1917).
Derain, "Chatou (Deux Figures Sur Un Plage," (Lot 189), is a brush and
ink, inkwash, watercolor amd gouache on paper that measures 19 by 24
3/8 inches. It was executed circa 1905 and was formerly in the
collection of Denys Sutton, who was editor for 25 years of Apollo, the distinguished art magazine.
is a fabulous work whose ghost-like figures standing before an orange
and red bent pole on a beach near rippling water is an extremely
beautiful abstraction. It might be just a sketch, but thank goodness it
was never completed as it is perfect as is and no abstraction ever
since can match it for stunning beauty and deft composition!
It is the finest work to be offered at auction this season!
It has an extremely modest estimate of $70,000 to $90,000. It sold for $86,500 including the buyer's premium as do all results mentioned in this article.
The auction total was $40,106,775 with 69.8 percent of the offered 278 lots selling.
Lot 383, "La Rue, Orgue de Barbarie," by Pierre Bonnard, oil on canvas, 24 7/8 by 35 3/8 inches, circa 1911
great "sketch" is Lot 383, "La Rue, Orgue de Barbarie," by Pierre
Bonnard, an oil on canvas that measures 24 7/8 by 35 3/8 inches.
It was executed circa 1911 and it reflects Bonnard's fascination
with and love for Paris. It has a wonderful sense of immediacy
and dimensionality and a very warm and sensuous palette. It has
an estimate of $300,000 to $400,000. It failed to sell!
Lot 320, "Con Roso," by Rudolf Bauer, oil on board, 28 7/8 by 40 1/4 inches, 1918
Bauer is represented in the auction by three large oils that show the
influence of Kandinsky and Bauer's fine Expressionist style Lot
320, "Con Roso," is an oil on board that measures 28 7/8 by 40 14
inches and was painted in 1918. It was once in the collection of
Solomon R. Guggenheim of New York. It has an estimate of $300,000 to
$400,000. It sold for $506,500.
Lot 322, "Heavy and Light," by Rudolf Bauer, oil on board, 29 by 40 3/8 inches, 1921
similar Bauer work of equal impetuosity and originality is Lot 322,
"Heavy and Light," an oil on board that measures 29 by 40 3/4 inches
and was painted in 1921. It was also once owned by Mr. Guggenheim
and was exhibited at his foundation's show, "Art of Tomorrow," in 1939.
The catalogue quotes Leonard Hutto-Hutschecker essay on the
artist in a 1976 show at the Leonard Hutto Galleries in New York that
"Bauer's paintings are music translated onto canvas." The lot has
an estimate of $300,000 to $400,000. It sold for $530,500.
Lot 320, "Spiritual Pleasures," by Rudolf Bauer, oil on canvas, 51 1/4 inches square, 1933-8
Lot 320 is a Bauer oil on canvas from 1933-8 entitled "Spiritual Pleasures." It is 51 1/4 inches square.
The catalogue provides the following commentary:
Rudolf Bauer was a principal innovator and exponent of Non-objective
painting, the term favored by Solomon R. Guggenheim himself to describe
autonomous abstractions from lyrical expressionism to geometric
constructivism. Bauer began his career in Berlin at the onset of
World War I, becoming a prominent figure in the avant-garde circle at
Herwarth Walden's famed Galerie Der Sturm
alongside fellow luminaries Paul Klee, Franz Marc and Wassily
Kandinsky. It was the latter artist who influenced Bauer the
most, and their shared passion for spiritualism and musically-derived
improvisation in art led them to collaboratively refine their styles
and theories and exhibit together often through the late 1910s and
early 1920s....Bauer's daring new brand of abstraction was first
exposed to the American public in1920 when the renowned collector and Societé Anonyme co-founder Katherine Dreier purchased a major oil at Der Sturm
and exhibited it in New York to rave reviews. Despite these early
accolades, Bauer's true success came seven years later when copper
magnate and then-fledgling art collector Solomon Guggenheim was shown
works by Bauer and Kandinsky by German art advisor and future
Guggenheim Foundation director Hilla Rebay. Guggenheim was
enthralled by the vanguard genius of Non-objective art, and then
devoted himself to building what is now one of the world's greatest
modern art collections around the primacy of Bauer and
Kandinsky....Guggenheim acquired hundreds of Bauer's works over the
years and in 1939 went so far as to preemptively purchase the artist's
entire estate. He filled his massive suite at the Plaza Hotel
exclusively with Bauer's work, gave Bauer funds to create to create a
museum devoted to Non-objective art in Gmerany and even entrusted Bauer
to purchase works from other emerging European artists on his behalf.
As a result Bauer was personally responsible for selecting many
of the greatest works by Kandinsky in the Guggenheim collection,
through a letter from Hilla Rebay to Bauer reveals that in one case,
'Mr. Guggenheim likes the Kandinsky very much but [he likes] yours
better. He would like all your most recent works. He is
very excited and wants nothing else in his bedroom.'"
Lot 320 has an estimate of $300,000 to $400,000. It sold for $314,500.
323, "Eckig (Angular)," by Wassily Kandinsky, watercolor, spritztechnik
and pen and ink on paper laid down on card, 19 1/2 by 13 7/8
Lot 323, "Eckig (Angular)," by Wassily Kandinsky is a watercolor,
spritztechnik and pen and ink on paper laid down on card that measures 19 1/2 by 13
7/8 inches. It was painted in 1931 and has an estimate of $500,000 to $700,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 324, untitled, by Wassily Kandinsky, gouache on paper laid down on card, 18 3/4 by 12 1/8 inches, 1940
moving to Paris in 1940, Kandinsky began to incorporate biomophic forms
to his works, reflecting his awareness of the Surrealist movement and
his own interest in the natural sciences. Lot324 is an untitled
work from 1940 that is a gouache on paper laid down on card that
measures 18 3/4 by 12 1/8 inches. The lot has an estimate of
$300,000 to $500,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 330, "La Mort et La Siréne," by René Magritte, charcoal and pastel on paper, 15 1/8 inches in diameter, 1918
of the most striking images in the auction is Lot 330, "La Mort et La
Siréne," a charcoal and pastel on paper by René Magritte (1898-1967).
It is 15 1/8 inches in diameter and was created in 1918.
The catalogue notes that an early owner of the work said that the
artist "produced this sinuous and slightly sinister image at age 20 in
response to a competition sponsored by the government seeking imagery
for use in a public campaign against veneral disease The lot has
an estimate of $80,000 to $120,000. It failed to sell.
325, "Femme et Oiseau Devant La Lune" by Joan Mirò, oil, pastel and
gouache on unstretched canvas, 7 7/8 by 4 3/8 inches, 1944
is a lively oil, pastel and gouache on unstretched canvas by Joan Mirò
(1893-1983). Entitled "Femme et Oiseau Devant La Lune," it
measures 7 7/8 by 4 3/8 inches and was executed in 1944. It is
from the collection of Mrs. Nelson A. Rockefeller. It hasan
estimate of $500,000 to $700,000. It sold for $590,500.
Lot 319, "Mobile Sculpture (Space Modulator)," by László Moholy-Nagy, plexiglass and chromium rods, 32 inches high, 1943
319 is an impressive sculpture of plexigass and chromium rods by László
Moholy-Nagy (1895-1946). Entitled "Mobile Sculpture (Space
Modulator)," it is 32 inches high and was made in 1943. The
artist created only two other similar works, both in the collection of
the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. The lot has an
estimate of $250,000 to $350,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 134, "L'Espagnole (Portrait de la Modiste)," by Eva Gonzalès, pastel on canvas, 18 1/8 by 15 inches, circa 1882-3
134 is a brilliant and very ravishing pastel on canvas by Eva Gonzalès
entitled "L'Espagnole (Portrait de la Modiste)." It measures 18
1/8 by `5 inches and was created circa 1882-3. The only pupil of
Manet, she first received critical attention at the Paris Salon of 1870
when she exhibited four works and was the subject of a portrait by
The catalogue provides the following commentary:
relative obscuity of Eva Gonzalès is attributable to both her untimely
death and to a discordant reception history. Unwilling to exhibit
with the Impressionists, Gonzalès stayed the course in the Salons with
her maitre and achieved significant critical acclaim despite her
lack of popularity in the eyes of the public. Her death at the
age of thirty-four left no time for a wide-sweeping survey of her
life's work, which for historians and collectors today provides the
breathtaking, if stilted, unveiling of an oeuvre of indeterminate size
andscope....The shimming and weightless pastels on this canvas are
profoundly vivacious, offering evidence of a young and energetic artist
in her prime. The continued rediscovery of Gonzalès's skillful
hand seats her in the pantheon of female Impressionists Berthe Morisot
and Mary Cassatt, while her life's narrative inextricably links
her to both the female and male masters of the era."
The lot has a modest estimate of $180,000 to $250,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 390, "Chanteuse de Café-Concert," by Edgar Degas, pastel over monotype on paper, 9 1/89 by 11 1/8 inches, circa 1875-6
390 is a very nice pastel over monotype on paper by Edgar Degas
(1834-1917). Entitled "Chanteuse de Café-Concert," it measures 9
1/8 by 11 1/8 inches and was made circa 1875-6. It was formerly
in the collection of Robert Kelso Cassatt, a nephew of Mary Cassatt,
Justin K.Thannhauser and Arthur Sachs and has been widely exhibited and
published. The catalogue notes that Picasso owned a number of
monotypes by Degas and compared their power "to the drawings of
Rembrandt." The lot has an estimate of $250,000 to $350,000. It sold for $362,500.
Lot 394, "Portrait of Louis Pascal," by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec," oil on canvas, 24 1/8 by 19 7/8 inches,1887
Lot 394 is a great, muted oil
sketch on canvas of Louis Pascal by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec
(1864-1901). It measures 24 1/8 by 19 7/9 inches and was executed
in 1887. The catalogue notes that Pascal was a cousin of the
artist and was regarded by him as "a distinguished modern
aristocrat" whom he also painted in top hat with cane, looking
like a wide-awake and alert Marcello Mastroannni, in the collection in
Albi of the Musée Toulouse-Lautrec. The catalogue also notes that
the artist's Post-Impressionistic style of contrasting texutres here
"sets his work apart from that of the Impressionists with their more
homogenuous surfaces." Thelot has a modest estimate of $200,000 to $300,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 384, "Portrait of Béatrice Tapié de Céleyran," by Henri Toulouse-Lautrect, oil on panel, 9 3/4 by 6 7/8 inches, 1897
Lautrec, Lot 384, depicts a different family member, Béatrice Tapié de
Céleyran, whom the artist also painted but from the back the same year
as this picture, 1897. This oil on panel measures 9 3/4 by 6 7/8
inches. The lady in the portrait was the artist's first cousin
and goddaughter. The catalogue notes that "though the loose
brushstrokes composing her dress and the soft pink and blue
overtones, he removes the formality implied in her pose and
creates an honest and endearing rendering of his beloved cousin."
Te lot has an estimate of $400,000 to $600,000. It sold for $386,500.
Lot 188, "Self-portrait," by Edouard Vuillard, charcoal on paper laid down on board, 18 3/4 by 12 1/4 inches, circa 1887-8
188 is a beautiful charcoal self-portrait by Edouard Vuillard
(1868-1940). It is a work on paper laid down on board and meaures
18 3/4 by 12 1/4 inches. It was created circa 1887-8. It
was formerly in the collection of Denys Sutton. It has a modest
estimate of $30,000 to $50,000. It sold for $74,500.
359, "Sous La Grand Lampe â Saint-Jacut," by Edouard Vuillard,
glue-based distempper on paper mounted on canvas, 30 1/4 by 23 5/8
359 is a striking work by Edouard Vuillard (1868-1940) that is a
vertical version of the same scene painted horizontally in the Musée
d'Art Moderne et Contemporain in Strasbbourg. This work measures
30 1/4 by 23 5/8 inches and was painted in 1909 and is entitled "Sous
La Grand Lampe â Saint-Jacut." Thelamp is certainly "grand" in
both pictures and dominates the room and the compositions, which is
rather unusual in the artist's work. The horizontal
version, reproduced in the catalogue, is a far nice and balanced
composition but less dramatic and much more sketchy. This
painting has been widely exhibited and published. It has an
estimate of $400,000 to $600,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 170, 'La Couseuse Devant La Fenetre," by Edouard Vuillard, oil on board laid down on panel, 21 7/8 by 29 inches, 1910
more typical Vuillard is Lot 170, "La Couseuse Devant La Fenetre," an
oil on board laid down on panel. It measures 21 7/8 by 29 inches
and was painted in 1910. The catalogue notes that the artist's
contemporaries "labelled him an intimiste,"
adding that "Art Critic Albert Aurier, a contemporary of Vuillard,
'admired these women bent over their work in gaslit interiors,
seeing them as possessing 'the charm of the unexpected' and expressing
'the bittersweet emotions of life and the tenderness of intimacy.'"
The catalogue also notes that the woman was probabably the
artist's mother with whom he lived. The lot has an estimate of
$500,000 to $700,000. It sold for $482,500.
Lot 143, "Femme Dans Un Intérieur," by Pierre Bonnard, oil on canvas, 19 1/8 by 18 1/8 inches, circa 1903
Nabi interiors are well recalled by Pierre Bonnard's "Femme Dans Un
Intérieur," Lot 143, an oil on canvas that measures 19 1/8 by 18 1/8
inches and was executed circa 1903.
catalogue entry for this lot shows a photograph of Bonnard and Vuillard
at Lake Como in 1899 and provides the following commentary about this
It quotes Sarah Whitfield that "the moments he chooses to
paint at the soothing lulls that punctuate a domestic routine.
These are intensely private prictures."
"As is the case
ofor many of Bonnard's best interior scenes, this picture requires the
viewer to take time to look at the composition to make sense of the
spatial relationships among its elements. Bonnard once said that he
intended for his pictures 'to show what one sees when one enters a
room all of a sudden' and the present picture exemplifies this
objective. Jean Clair wrote of the experiene of looking at Bonnard's
paintngs, asserting that the artist intended 'to paint the feeling
of 'visual entirety' that one experiences on entering a room,
before one has recognized, distinguished, bought into focus and
identified the various details...the revolution in painting bought abut
by Bonnard was that, for the first time, a painter attempted to
translate onto canvas the data of a vision that is physiologically
'real....' He was the first artist to have attempted to portray on
canvas the integrality of the field of vision and so bring near to the
eye what classical perspective had kept at a distance."
The lot has an estimate of $250,000 to $350,000. It sold for $266,500.
Lot 117, "Le Pont D'un Transat," by Juan Gris, gouache and watercolor on cut and layered paper, 8 4/58 by 11 5/8 inches, 1925
117 is a very nice gouache and watercolor on cut and layered paper of
an oceanliner by Juan Gris (1887-1927). It is entitled "Le Pont
D'un Transat and measures 8 5/8 by 11 5/8 inches. It was painted
in 1925. It is from the collection of Mrs. Nelson A. Rockefeller
and was once in the collection of Gertrude Stein of Paris and has
beenwidely exhibited. It has an estimate of $50,000 to $70,000. It sold $98,500.
Lot 126, "Ettore e Andromaca (Hector and Andromaca)," by Giorgio de Chirico, oil on canvas, 31 1/2 by 23 3/4 inches, circa 1955
126 is a good painting of Hector and Andromaca by Giorgiode Chirico
(1888-1978). An oil on canvas, it measures 31 1/2 by 23 3/4
inches and was painted circa 1955. It has anestimate of $600,000
to $800,000. It sold for $662,500.
186, "L'Orpheline Alsacienne, Version a la Tete Droite," by Auguste
Rodin, marble, 11 7/8 inches high, conceived in 1870 and executed circa
185 is a very beautiful white marble statue by Auguste Rodin entitled
"L'Orpheline Alsacienne, Version a la tete droite." It is 11 1/8
inches high and is dated 1870. It has an estmate of $500,000 to
$700,000. It sold for $812,500.
Lot 122, "Tete d'homme," by Pablo Picasso, oil on canvas, 16 1/4 by 13 inches, 1965
122 is a good portrait of a man by Pablo Picasso. An oil on
canvas, it measures 16 1/4 by 13 inches and was painted in 1965.
It has an estimate of $700,000 to $900,000 It sold for $1,142,500.
Lot 180, "La Terre de Cleden, Point de Raz, Finistere," by Henry Moret, oil on canvas, 36 1/4 by 28 7/8 inches, 1911
180 is a very lovely Impressionist landscape by Henry Moret (1856-1913)
entitled "La Terre de Cleden, Point de Raz, Finistere." An oil on
canvas it measures 36 1/4 by 28 7/8 inches and was painted in 1911.
It was once in the collection of the Detroit Institute of Arts. It has a modest estimate of $50,000 to $70,000. It sold for $158,500.
Lot 178, "Les Coteaux de Gisors, Temps Gris," by Camille Pissarro, oil on canvas, 18 1/8 by 21 5/8 inches, 1885
178 is an excellent Impressionist landscape by Camille Pissarro
(1831-1903) entitled "Les Coteaux de Gisors, Temps Gris." An oil
on canvas, it measures 18 1/8 by21 5/8 inches and was painted in 1885.
It has an estimate of $250,000 to $350,000. It sold for $398,500.
Lot 224, "Blick Auf Rapallo (View of Rapallo)," by Oskar Kokoschka, oil on canvas, 27 3/4 by 35 5/8 inches, 1933
224 is a fine landscape view of Rapallo by Oskar Kokoschka (1886-1980).
An oil on canvas, it measures 23 3/4 by 35 5/8 inches and was
painted in 1933. It has an estimate of $450,000 to
$650,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 407, "Les Coquelicotes," by Louis Valtat, oil on canvas, 28 7/8 by 36 3/8 inches, 1909
407 is a vibrant and lovely landscape by Louis Valtat entitled "Les
Coquelicotes." An oil on canvas, it measures 28 7/8 by 36 3/8
inches. It was painted in 1909. It has an estimate of
$40,000 to $60,000. It sold for $56,250.
Lot 389, "Madame Valtat au Jardin a Antheor," by Louis Valtat, oil on canvas, 51 1/8 by 64 inches, 1901
389 is an impressive painting by Louis Valtat of hiswife in a garden at
Antheor. An oil on canvas, it measures 51 1/8 by 65 inches and
was painted in1901. The catalouge describes it as a stunning
synthesis of simplicity of form and exuberant luminosity." It has
an estimate of $320,000 to $380,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 358, "Evocation (Femme a la Montagne)," by Odilon Redon, pastel on paper mounted oncard, 31 1/2 by23 5/8 inches
358, "Evocation (Femme a la Montagne)," is a fine landscape pastel on
paper mounted on card by Odilon Redon ( 1840-1916). It measures
31 1/2 by 23 5/8 inches. It has an estimate of $400,000 to
$500,000. It sold for $534,500.
See The City Review article on the Fall 2012 Impressionist & Modern Art auction at Christie's New York