Source: ART KNOWLEDGE NEWS. 24 Jan. 2007.
NEW YORK, NY.-Following the record-breaking success of its Old Master & 19th Century Art sale in December in London,Christie’spresents its flagship New York sale of Old Master & 19th Century Paintings, Drawings, and Watercolors in a two-part auction on Wednesday, January 27. This extraordinary sale of over 320 works presents the best examples of European art from the 15th to the 19th century, and features master works and recent rediscoveries from Lucas Cranach the Elder, Jan Brueghel II, Thomas Gainsborough, Gaetano Gandolfi, Louis Léopold Boilly, Jean Baptiste Camille Corot, and Samuel Palmer, among others. Total sales are expected to achieve in excess of $48 million.
Nicholas Hall, International Co-Head of Old Master & 19th Century Art, comments: “The record prices achieved at Christie’s London last month for Raphael’s “Head of a Muse”, Rembrandt’s “Portrait of a man with arms akimbo”, and Domenichino’s “Saint John the Evangelist” galvanized the art market and renewed collector interest in this exciting field. Now, perhaps more than ever, our clients are seeking the optimal mix of quality, rarity, scholarship, condition, and provenance in their fine art investments, whether it is an early 15th century altarpiece panel such as Granacci’s majestic “Madonna delle Cintola,” or a 19th century rediscovery, such as Corot’s “Evening Star.” The upcoming sale was crafted with these collecting criteria in mind, and we are delighted to present a robust selection of superb works, including a number of exciting rediscoveries, fresh-to-market works from prominent collections, and truly exceptional career masterpieces that seldom come to market.”
Property of a Private Collector
Christie’s is honored to present a selection of eleven top-quality works from a distinguished private collector of Old Master and 19th century paintings and drawings. A highlight of the collection – and the top lot of the upcoming sale – is The Entrance to the Turkish Garden Café, 1812 by Boilly (1761-1845), a brilliantly executed Parisian street scene recognized as one of the most ambitious and technically accomplished paintings of the artist’s career (estimate: $3-5 million). The painting depicts the crowd gathered outside of the Café Turc, a popular restaurant of the day located on the Boulevard du Temple in the Marais. From a compositional standpoint, the painting is a veritable tour-de-force of figural painting that introduces more than sixty individual characters in rich detail and great variety of dress, gesture, posture and expression. Boilly even inserts his own self-portrait into the scene; he is the man in round spectacles and a top hat on the right-hand side of the canvas who gazes out directly at the viewer. The painting was first exhibited at the Paris Salons of 1812 and 1814, and more recently at the Kimbell Art Museum and the National Gallery of Art. The upcoming sale marks the first time it will be offered at auction since 1902.