It’s show time for Old Masters, 19th-century paintings, works of art, and exquisite jewellery during Dorotheum’s prestigious Auction Week from 23 – 25 October 2018. Whether heroic, romantic or heavenly, this time women will not only be in the focus as motifs, but also as artists.
An outstanding rarity at the Old Master Paintings sale on 23 October 2018, will be a portrait of Lucretia, dramatically staged by Artemisia Gentileschi, one of the first women painters to go down in the records of art history. It is the first time that the painting will be offered at auction (estimate € 500,000 – 700,000, see press release). Another depiction of Lucretia by a female Old Master painter, namely the Neapolitan artist Diana de Rosa, comes from the same European private collection as Gentileschi’s work.
A portrait by Anthony van Dyck can be seen as equally sensational. His Portrait of a Noblewoman with a Parrot is a previously undocumented addition to the oeuvre of this famous artist, who became one of the most coveted portraitists in Europe thanks to the support of Rubens. The painter’s virtuosity particularly reveals itself in details such as the delicate ruff, which lets the fabric of the dress shine through. One can only speculate about the identity of this lady, whose eyes have different colours. The sitter was probably the wife of the picture’s former owner. Painted on panel, the work is in perfect condition (€ 300,000 – 500,000, see press release).
The sale will also mark a rendezvous of three leading figures of Bolognese painting: Donato Creti (Christ in the House of Mary and Martha), Guido Reni (Fortune with a Purse), and Giuseppe Maria Crespi (The Penitent Magdalene) unite classicist idealism and naturalism (€ 80,000 – 120,000, € 300,000 – 400,000, € 150,000 – 200,000).
The name Brueghel must by no means be missing in an Old Masters sale. What is so remarkable about A Floral Arrangement in a Basket painted by Jan Brueghel II, is that the work unites flowers blooming at entirely different seasons, meaning that it would be impossible from a botanist’s point of view to see them combined within a single bouquet (€ 180,000 – 250,000). His father, Jan Brueghel I, on the other hand, dealt with a much less decorative but equally fascinating theme: in his gloomy and lurid Hell Scene, painted on a copper plate and measuring merely 26 by 36 centimetres, sinners are punished in various ways (€ 250,000 – 350,000).
The Allegory of Winter by Sebastian Vrancx, dated 1608, presents an exciting juxtaposition of enigmatic still lifes with landscape scenery (€ 140,000 – 180,000).
19th-Century Paintings sale on 24 October 2018
Two important paintings by Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller, A Young Lady Reading a Letter and The Affection of Children, will be in the limelight at Dorotheum’s 19th-Century Paintings sale on 24 October 2018. In A Young Lady Reading a Letter , Waldmüller proves a master of lighting: the painting has been conserved in a German private collection since the 1950s (€ 280,000 - 350,000, The Affection of Children, € 140,000 - 180,000).
The painting Peasant Woman in a Red Dress is by the hand of the Russian landscapist, portraitist and genre painter Abram Efimovich Arkhipov (1862–1930), whose work is represented in prestigious museums such as the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow and the Hermitage in Saint Petersburg, as well as major museums in the former USSR. In 1916, Arkhipov began devoting himself to his favourite theme: peasant women in red. Red as an expression of beauty, as a beautiful colour par excellence, is an idea firmly rooted in Russian folklore. The manner of painting, the figure style and the type of garment suggest that the painting was executed around 1920. Arkhipov was an active member of the Travelling Exhibitions Cooperative, the Union of Russian Artists and the Association of Artists of Revolutionary Russia. The German owners of the painting received it in the 1970s as a gift from the Soviet government (€ 150,000 – 250,000).
John William Godward and Vittorio Matteo Corcos will take us to the Belle Époque. Godward, one of the best classicising history painters of the nineteenth century, made direct reference to Greek and Roman antiquity. The Mediterranean as a backdrop and the deep blue sky are elements regularly encountered in Godward’s opulent compositions, including Sweet Dreams, the portrait of a young Roman beauty (€ 160,000 – 180,000).
Vittorio Matteo Corcos, already referred to as the “painter of pretty young women” during his lifetime, has captured an emotional moment in Dis-moi tout! (“Tell me everything!”). A young woman is shown watching a ship in the distance which is taking her sweetheart away, while a friend comforts her by holding her hand (€ 200,000 – 300,000).
The painting has an interesting history: when Corcos painted it in 1883, he was working for the French art dealer Adolphe Goupil, whose gallery had been founded in 1861 and was later renamed Boussod, Valadon & Cie. Theo van Gogh, Vincent’s brother, sold the painting for Goupil’s gallery along with its pendant, Nous verrons! (“We shall see!”). One by one, the two paintings were sold to an American art dealer. In 1884, Boussod, Valadon & Cie had coloured reproductions made of the two paintings to reach a larger audience. In this way, Corcos attracted international attention amongst a growing number of American art collectors visiting Paris.
Further artists in the sale include Olga Wisinger-Florian, Ivan K. Aivazovsky, Giuseppe De Nittis, Ipolito Caffi and Rudolf Ernst.
Works of Art sale, 25 October 2018
Antique silver, glass, porcelain and historic furniture, including an Empire-style sewing table, will be offered for sale at the Works of Art auction on 25 October 2018. A KPM lidded vase made for the 1900 Paris World’s Fair is one of the most fascinating porcelain objects. It was decorated in the so-called “soft-paste” painting technique, a special type of floral decoration developed in Berlin by Paul Miethe, the porcelain factory’s senior master painter (€ 70,000 – 120,000).
The highlight in the Jewellery sale on 24 October 2018 is a diamond diadem boasting a Habsburg provenance and manufactured by A. E. Köchert. The piece, which is set with diamonds weighing 40 carats altogether, can be divided into seven brooches (€ 60,000 – 120,000, see press release).
Old Master Paintings sale Tuesday, 23 October 2018, 5 pm
19th-Century Paintings sale Wednesday, 24 October 2018, 5 pm
Jewellery sale Wednesday, 24 October 2018, 2 pm
Works of Art sale Thursday, 25 October 2018, 2 pm
Public viewing from 13 October 2018
Venue Palais Dorotheum, Vienna 1, Dorotheergasse 17
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