Auction of Impressionist & Modern Art on Tuesday, October 9, 2021 at 11am
Newly Rediscovered Work by Jean-Francois Millet Achieves $642,600!
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NEW YORK, NY -- Bidders from around the world drove strong prices at Doyle's auction of Impressionist & Modern Art on November 9, 2021. Showcased were fine European and American paintings, drawings and sculpture from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The offerings spanned Academic and Barbizon art through Impressionism and Post-Impressionism to German Expressionism and early Modernism.
With competitive international bidding, the sale totaled an exceptional $3,212,843, surpassing the pre-sale estimate of $1,869,000-2,917,000, with a robust 86% sold by lot and and 100% sold by value.
Newly Rediscovered Work by Jean Francois Millet - Sold for a Record $642,600
Highlighting the sale was a newly rediscovered work by Jean-Francois Millet that achieved $642,600 -- A World Auction Record for a Nude by Millet. Out of the public eye since 1910, Young Woman Asleep, Seen from the Back, an intimate and sensual depiction of the female nude, is quite rare in the oeuvre of Millet. Having been signed by the artist makes it all the rarer, as he was not known to sign his paintings of nudes. It was painted around the same time that Millet had has his first Salon success with the exhibition of his masterful Oedipus Taken Down from the Tree, 1847.
Auguste Rodin's 'The Kiss' - Sold for $289,800
An early bronze cast of Auguste Rodin's iconic 'The Kiss' attracted attention from both sides of the Atlantic, sending the sculpture to $289,800 against a $250,000-350,000 estimate. The composition was originally composed as a figural group to be included in Rodin's monumental bronze portal The Gates of Hell, which was commissioned in 1880 as the entrance to a museum of the decorative arts. The embracing lovers were intended to portray Paolo Malatesta and Francesca da Rimini, whose story of forbidden love and eternal damnation was immortalized in Canto V of Dante's Inferno. In 1886 Rodin removed the group from the Gates of Hell -- its lyrical sensuality seemed inconsistent with the project's overall theme of divine justice -- and reconfigured it as a freestanding work. In 1888 the French Government commissioned a large-scale version of the composition in marble, which was exhibited at the Salon de la Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts to enormous acclaim. Other versions in marble were made by Rodin's workshop in the following years. In 1898 Rodin entered into an agreement with the Leblanc-Barbedienne foundry to publish an edition of the composition in bronze in various sizes, of which this piece is one. The Kiss remains to this day one of Rodin's most iconic and best-loved works.
This is the earliest Barbedienne cast of The Kiss known to the Comité Rodin to have come to the United States, and the only one shown in a period photograph (see above). Its provenance is particularly distinguished, including the financier Eugene Isaac Meyer, Chairman of the Federal Reserve, President of the World Bank and publisher of the Washington Post, and other members of his family. After being purchased from the sale of the collection of Aline Meyer Liebman and her husband in 1955, it has remained in the family of the present owner until today.
Roger Muhl - A World Auction Record!
Known for his bright, colorful renderings of locales in the South of France, Roger Muhl was attracted to the area for its incredible light. A lush depiction of the Cap d’Antibes, located on the French Riviera, this large-scale canvas soared past its estimate of $7,000-10,000 to achieve $56,700 -- A World Auction Record for the Artist.
A Walkabout with the Specialist
Specialist Elaine Stainton led a preview tour of the exhibition on November 5 livestreamed on Instagram @doylenewyork
View the Video
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