Auction - Impressionists and other Modern masters to be exhibited in Singapore

Joan Miro
In view of the growing interest in Impressionist & Modern and Contemporary Art throughout Asia especially in Singapore, Sotheby’s has decided to exhibit selected highlights of its London Summer Sale Series of Impressionist & Modern Art and Contemporary Art in Singapore on May 21-22 at the Four Seasons Hotel. The exhibition is the first dedicated preview of a major London auctions of Impressionist & Modern and Contemporary Art hosted in Singapore.

Sotheby’s London Evening Sale of Impressionist & Modern Art will be held on June 22 and offer an important selection of classic works on canvas and on paper. Chief among these is a rare oil and mixed media work on cardboard by Joan Miró, Vipère Exaspérée Devant L’Oiseau Rouge. Painted in 1955, it is a dynamic composition in Miró’s quintessential palette of red, blue and green with a sinuously poetic line in black ink. The figures of the ‘exasperated’ snake and bird can be clearly discerned, but their forms are reduced to a collection of fluid and graceful lines, animating the surface of the picture. Miró’s addition of roughly shaped stones and sealing wax act as counterpoints in the composition. The work was one of a number of experimental paintings Miró executed whilst waiting for his new studio to be constructed on the island of Mallorca.

Another key lot will be a work by Kees Van Dongen, Caille Sur Canapé, which depicts a reclining woman whose striking pose, clothes and jewellery give her the air of vibrancy and boldness characteristic of Van Dongen’s most accomplished portraits. The use of his favoured emerald green, highlighting the figure’s skin,
demonstrates the artist’s disregard for anatomy and naturalistic representation, in favour of depicting the physicality and sensual presence of his sitter. Known as the principal portraitist of the Fauve artists, Van Dongen executed portraits inspired by his visits to cabarets and cafés. His sitter’s elegant evening dress and her glittering necklace and bracelet, executed in dabs of paint applied directly from the tube, identify the mysterious woman as a member of high society.

Other highlights include Pierre-Auguste Renoir's Baigneuse Allongée De Dos Avec Un Chapeau De Paille, or Femme Couchée Sur L'Herbe, which comes to auction for the first time since it was painted in 1892.