Tajan's «Impressionism and Modern Art»

French auction house Tajan conducted special sales featuring the paintings of the early XX century. The sale titled «Impressionism and Modern Art».was held on September 28 in Paris.

The auction comprised 101 lots including canvases by the world-famous masters as well as artworks created by less known artists. The estimates of the featured lots were quite modest (the lower limit was set at €400, while the majority of estimates ranged within €3,000–5,000). In general, the auction was a success with bidders, although more than forty lots remained unsold.

Alas, the most expensive (according to the pre-sale estimate) lot of the sale –a drawing by French postimpressionist painter Georges Rouault (1871–1958) failed to find a new owner at the auction. Usually, the forms in his canvases and drawings are simplified and disfigured, delineated by thick black lines and tinted in bright colours. Probably, such a technique is a tribute to painter’s memoirs of his early career as stained-glass artist. The coloured ink on paper drawing «Grotesque» (1916 39.5 x 25.0 cm) auctioned at Tajan is made in the same technique. Unfortunately, the masterpiece estimated at €18,000–20,000 remained unsold.

Among the lots that did well at the auction were two pictures by Eduard Cortes. The experts of the auction house estimated «La Porte Saint Martin au Crepuscule» at €15,000–20,000. The unique picture, painted in the typical impressionism manner (33.0 x 47.0 cm) was purchased by an anonymous buyer for impressive €34,530, thus setting the price record for the late September auction. Another picture by Cortes the gouache on cardboard «Saint Denis Boulevard and Arch» (Boulevard et Porte Saint Denis), was estimated at €12,000–15,000. The lot was hammered within the estimate at €14,340.

Only the one of the three works by Konstantin Korovin (1861–1939) put up for sale was sold – the sketch of an actor’s toggery made for opera «Prince Igor». The gouache on paper drawing was sold for €1,233 (the pre-sale estimate €1,000–1,500).

In 1884 Korovin was invited by S. Mamontov to be a painter of Moscow Private Opera where he had been creating decorations for 14 years. Korovin is a founder of a new type of scene decoration involved in a performance action where the space ordonnance and costumes were entwined with scene and music. Three gouache sketches of actor’s toggery for operas «Prince Igor» and «Snow-Maiden» were put up for sale. The costume of the Tsar Berendey (27.0 x 19.0 cm) for «Snow-Maiden» there was highly estimated (€2,500–3,000). Unfortunately, it remained unsold.

The watercolour drawing «A Cat» (Le chat, 1920) by famous French painter and writer Jean Metzinger (1883–1956), the ideologist of cubist aesthetics was estimated at €2,000–3,000. The lot was sold for €2,390.

The sales totaled impressive €261,373.

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Published in: on November 17, 2006 at 7:22 am  Leave a Comment  
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