Impressionist and Modern Art Day and Works on Paper auctions

New York – Christie’s is pleased to announce highlights of its upcoming Impressionist and Modern Art Day and Works on Paper auctions at Rockefeller Center on May 15, and its popular Picasso Ceramics online-only sale running May 5 – May 19 at A combined total of 407 works will be offered across Christie’s Day, Works on Paper, and Picasso Ceramics sales to complement Looking Forward to the Past Evening Sale of 20th century masterpieces on May 11 (see related release) and Christie’s flagship Evening Sale of Impressionist and Modern Art on May 14 (see related release), creating even greater opportunities for both new and established collectors to acquire blue-chip works by the masters of the era.




The Collection of John C. Whitehead:


The Works on Paper and Day Sale is led by works from The Collection of John C. Whitehead, including French oil paintings, works on paper and sculpture. Mr. Whitehead, who passed away in February, was among the captains of the global finance industry for four decades, having served as Chairman of Goldman Sachs during its critical phase of global expansion. His signature brand of quiet leadership earned him both success and accolades, making him a sought-after leader and an invaluable resource within finance and government sectors, as well as the philanthropic and educational community. Highlighting the selection from the Day and Works on Paper Sale is George Braque’s Tête de femme II, painted in 1930 ($400,000-$600,000) – pictured left, and Paul Sérusier’s Les deux lavandières au bord de la cascadecirca 1890 – pictured right.


Paul Sérusier’s Les deux lavandières au bord de la cascadecirca 1890 ($500,000-800,000) ­– pictured right.


In September 1888, Sérusier met Paul Gauguin at Pont-Aven, an occurrence which would dramatically transform his practice.

Under Gauguin’s influence, he began to experiment with a new style of painting in which simple forms and flat colors were chosen for emotional rather than descriptive motives.
Gauguin encouraged Sérusier to paint with pure color and to exaggerate his impressions in order to achieve pictorial coherence in his work.
Les deux lavandières au bord de la cascade was painted at the height of Sérusier’s involvement with the Pont-Aven artists.
The present work was once attributed to Sérusier’s mentor, Paul Gaugain, demonstrating the magnitude of his influence on Sérusier’s work.

The sale also features significant consignments from institutions, including:


>Two monumental paintings by Eugène BoudinBordeaux, Le Portcirca 1874-1876  ($400,000 – $600,000) and BeaulieuLa baie des tourmis, Effet du matin, 1892 ($200,000-300,000) from The Art Gallery of Ontario.

Kees van Dongen’s large and elegant painting, Portrait de Madame Flore Lesieur ($300,000-500,000) from The Bass Museum of Art.
An early drawing by Georges SeuratNu allongé, 1875 ($60,000 – $80,000) from The Museum of Modern Art.

The Property of an Important New York Estate is represented in both the Works on Paper and Day Sale. This collection is highlighted by a pastel titled Danseuse au repos by Edgar Degas from 1885 ($400,000-600,000) and an intimate painting by Edouard Vuillarddepicting the artist’s family, La lecture dans la salle à manger, Vaucresson, 1924($300,000-500,000).


 Edgar Degas, Danseuse au repos, pastel and charcoal on gray paper, Drawn in 1885 | $400,000-600,000 – pictured right


Known to many as the “painter of dance,” Degas focused on the ballet throughout his career. In the later years, his attention evolved past the onstage spectacle and he became increasingly captivated by dancers at rest in informal positions, like the one portrayed in the present work. With rich contours and subtle bursts of color, the artist draws attention to the torques of the dancer’s limbs. Degas has slightly blurred her facial features, reducing her face to a simple formula–one that is impossible to name as if her identity was less relevant than her body for his artistic needs.
In May 1894, Degas invited Henry Lerolle to visit his studio with his brother-in-law, the composer Ernest Chausson. Over time, Chausson became friends with the artist and acquired nine of Degas’s works including the present work.

Edouard Vuillard, La lecture dans la salle à manger, Vaucresson, oil on board, 1924 | $300,000-500,000 – pictured on following page, right


The present work depicts a dining room scene at the Closerie des Genêts, a villa which Vuillard and his mother rented in Vaucresson, a commune in the western suburbs of Paris. The painting is representative of one of the artist’s favorite themes: the domestic interior. Alexandre Vuillard, the  artist’s brother, is seated in the foreground reading a newspaper at the dining table, while their mother, Madame Vuillard, can be seen through the open door of her bedroom, standing in her black bonnet.

This painting displays a wealth of decorative elements within the interior, most noticeably the ornate wallpaper, the red-checkered table cloth, the patterned carpet, and the bright green chandelier hanging above the table. Each of these accents energetically competes for the viewer’s attention, but in the end, the composition offers a captivating insight into the artist’s private world.
Other highlights in the Day sale include Le lavoir à Bougival, a beautiful river landscape painted by Alfred Sisley in 1877 ($200,000-300,000) and the sale’s cover lot, an intricate Cubist composition by the Italian modernist Gino Severini.


Gino Severini, Nature morte, oil on board, 1918 | $400,000-600,000 – pictured on page 1


Severini painted this still-life in December 1918, just weeks after the Armistice brought the Great War to an end, and at the height of his engagement with synthetic Cubism in its radically distilled late form.

In the present Nature morte, Severini has assembled a set of familiar still-life elements—a compotier of grapes, a pair of playing cards, and a pipe—on a background plane of highly schematized faux-bois that signifies a wooden tabletop. As Gris did too during these same years, Severini has given the fragmented idiom of cubism a heightened sense of lucidity and formal cohesion.
Additional highlights from the Works on Paper sale include Wassily Kandinsky’s vibrantly painted Ohne titel from 1918 ($500,000-700,000) – pictured right, and Collage-Peinture, 1934, a whimsical collage executed on sandpaper by Joan Miró.


Joan Miró, Collage-Peinture, brush and India ink, pencil and paper collage on sandpaper, 1934 | $200,000-300,000


The present work is one of a series of works the artist completed during a phase of intense experimentation.

  • At the beginning of 1934, he tried numerous combinations of new and different media, including black and white sheets of paper with sandpaper, powdered pastels and collage with oil paints.
    Referring to the sand paper collage series which the present work belongs to, Jacques Dupin wrote, “In his collage-paintings he made much of the difference in texture between bits of white paper cut out in simple forms and the grittiness of sandpaper. He inscribed a rapid, flexible stroke on the white paper, continuing it without a break in the black lines painted on the sandpaper. The abrupt shift in textures and mediums introduces a tension that is only resolved and made rhythmic through the flexible interplay of the forms.” (J. Dupin, Miró, Paris, 2012, p. 183).
    Also featured in the day sale is a selection of sculptures by modern artists including Barbara Hepworth’s Curved Form (Bryher) (estimate: $300,000-$500,000) – pictured page 4, left,Henry Moore’s Working Model for Mother and Child: Hood (estimate: $300,000-$500,000) – pictured page 4, right.PICASSO CERAMICS ONLINE-ONLY SALEThis spring, Christie’s will present its third installment of Picasso Ceramics, its New York online-only sale dedicated to ceramics produced by the leading artist of the 20th century, May 5th through May 19th.  The sale presents a strong selection of examples of tremendous quality, with estimates ranging from $1,200 to $120,000.  Leading the sale is Picasso’sTripode (estimate: $80,000 – 120,000) –pictured left.Also featured is a superb selection of Picasso’s terracotta plaques series including Le déjeuner sur l’herbe which was inspired by Edouard Manet (estimate: $50,000 – 80,000) –pictured right.  Collections highlighting the sale include property from an Important New York Estate as well as the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden.  To learn more about the sale, please visit


    Related Sale

    Sale 11210
    Picasso Ceramics Online-Only
    5-19 May
    New York, Rockefeller Plaza

     further auction dates  on

    Art Auction Calendar




all  informations are given without guarantee of correctness

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