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Sotheby's Impressionist & Modern Evening Sale

Our recommendations for Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Evening auction.

By Chadwick Ciocci

Sotheby’s upcoming Impressionist and Modern Art Evening auction in New York on May 9, 2016 has several options that would make wonderful additions to even the most world-class of collections.

Below are our acquisition recommendations.

Paul Signac

Maisons du port, Saint-Tropez

$8,000,000 – 12,000,000

Paul Signac ranks amongst the highest echelons of impressionist and neo-impressionist painters, and is a requisite name for any serious collection. This specific work is a particularly beautiful representation of his pointillist work at the height of his career. Maisons du port, St. Tropez was painted when Signac traveled on his boat, Olympia, to St. Tropez after the death of his friend and fellow artist Georges Seurat. Signac was seeking uplifting and a change of mood, and we suspect if the quality of this work is any indication, then he found what he was looking for.

This is a serious blue-chip piece by an artist whose reputation and desirability will only increase.

We suggest acquiring this piece up to and even slightly above the high estimate.

Pablo Picasso

Buste d’homme laure

$8,000,000 – 12,000,000

This piece by Pablo Picasso was executed in 1969 as he was nearing the end of his life. It is incredibly vibrant and fun, as Picasso continued to explore his interest and inspiration with and from the mousquetaire, Don Quixote, Diego Velazquez and Rembrandt van Rijn, whom at this time was a significant influence on his work.

Although this is an incredibly fun and enjoyable piece, it is not necessarily one of Picasso’s great works.

We suggest acquiring this piece near the low end of the estimate.

Auguste Rodin

Iris, messagere des dieux

$2,500,000 – 3,500,000

This bronze cast is typical Rodin, which is part of the reason we recommend it. In regards to potential investment return, quintessential works such as this one, in our opinion, are excellent long-term bets. One could undoubtedly find prettier works by Rodin, but this piece captures more drama and action than most and at 37 inches tall is versatile décor in addition to being good art.  

We suggest acquiring this piece near the low end of the estimate.

Alberto Giacometti

Femme debout, sans bras

$1,500,000 – 2,000,000

Rodin and Giacometti’s works could not stand in greater contrast to each other, or compliment one’s collection any better. The smoothness, vivacity and realness of Rodin’s work is the opposite of Giacometti’s: rough, dark and twisted. And it was their expertise at executing their own unique visions that we love about both.

The two works could be displayed in the same room, undoubtedly prompting inquiries in to the divergent theories and aesthetics that both represent.

Giacometti’s market has been doing extremely well, and we see no reason he will not continue to be a sought-after artist, and in fact, is likely to increase as such.

We suggest acquiring this piece up to and even above the high estimate.

Rene Magritte

La Geante

$1,400,000 – 1,800,000

It may not be Son of Man, but La Geante is nonetheless classic Magritte with his trademark color, style and – at this early point of his career – subtle surrealism.  The leaf tree is a common and recurring motif in Magritte’s work and this piece is a fantastic addition to even the most sophisticated of collections.

We suggest acquiring this piece up to the midpoint of the estimate. 

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