Carter B. Horsley
Latin American Art auction
at Sotheby's November 20 and 21, 2006 is highlighted by a major
work by Fernando Botero, three good works by Wilfredo Lam, three
good works by Gunther Gerzso, and a good drapery painting by Claudio
is an excellent gouache
by Wilfredo Lam (1902-1982) entitled "Pere et enfant."
It measures 40 1/2 by 28 3/4 inches and was painted in 1938. It
was once in the collection of Helena Rubenstein. It has an estimate
of $175,000 to $225,000. It failed to sell.
is an exceptionally
bright work by Lam that is entitled "Nous Sommes Presents."
An oil on canvas, it measures 41 3/8 by 35 5/8 inches. It was
painted in 1962. It has a modest estimate of $100,000 to $150,000.
It sold for $251,200 including the buyer's premium as do all
results mentioned in this article.
fine and classic work
by Lam is Lot 28, "5 Centrimetros Sobre La Tierra,"
a 1955 oil on canvas that measures 39 1/8 by 50 inches and is
property from the Hans and Alice de Jong Collection, Hengelo/Ascona.
It has a modest estimate of $200,000 to $300,000. It sold for
Cartas II," is a large painting of card-players by Fernando
Botero (b. 1933). An oil on canvas, it measures 62 3/4 by 79 3/8
inches and was painted in 1989. It has an estimate of $1,500,000
to $1,800,000. It sold for $1,696,000.
is a very beautiful
and magnificently textured work by Francisco Toledo (b. 1940)
that is entitled "La Tierra." A pen, gouache and collage
on cork, it measures 30 3/4 by 22 7/8 inches. It was executed
in 1982. It has a modest estimate of $50,000 to $70,000. It
sold for $54,000.
is a very handsome abstraction by Gunther Gerzso (1915-2000).
It is the back cover illustration of the auction catalogue. An
oil on masonite, it measures 43 1/4 by 25 5/8 inches and was painted
in 1957. It has an estimate of $225,000 to $300,000. It sold
for $625,800, an auction record for the artist.
earlier and more vigorous
work by Gerzso is Lot 27, "Combate," an oil on masonite
that measures 24 1/8 by 17 3/8 inches. Executed in 1946, it has
a modest estimate of $50,000 to $70,000. It sold for $78,000.
catalogue provides the
Gerzso is situated
within the history of Mexican modern art as one of the pioneers
of abstraction - an artist who successfully merged elements of
Mexico's past with diverse aspects of Cubism, Constructivism,
and Surrealism to develop a signature style that redefined the
possibilities of European abstraction and provided an alternative
to more traditional notions of 'mexicanidad.' Gerzo embarked upon
a career as a painter shortly after his return to Mexico City
in 1941 after a successful stint as a set desginer at the Cleveland
Play House. And, although his early work explored many of the
themes characteristic of the Mexican school, these formative years
also included the close study of European Surrealism and Abstraction.
His immersion into Surrealism was further bolstered by Mexico
city's emergence at that time as a great center of artistic ideas
sparked by the giants of Mexican Muralism, the Mexican renaissance,
and the influx of artistic exiles from war torn Europe. ....Gerzso
began a close association with many in the circle of European
surrealist exiles including the influential and noted poet and
poltical activist Benjamin Peret and artists Leonora Carrington,
Gordon Onslow Ford, Estaban Frances, Wolfgang Paalen, and Remedios
Varo. Painted in 1946, Combate reveals Gerzso's
and absorption of the formal and conceptional language of Surrealism.
Combate depicts the familiar surrealist subject of
ethereal being or personnage - a spirit presence that transcends
the corporeal body. Gerzso's treatment of the subject is reminiscent
of Yves Tanguy's horizonless landscapes (a source the artist
while his use of primary colors, biomorphic forms, and linear
patterns recall elements of Miro's work. Likewise, the presence
of protruding angular forms mimics some of the compositional elements
employed by Matta and Estaban Frances to create a multidimensional
"Azul y Rojo,"
is another good work by Gerzso. An oil on masonite that measures
10 1/4 by 21 1/4 inches, it was painted in 1965. It has an estimate
of $30,000 to $40,000. It sold for $66,000.
is a small but fine
work by Joaquin Torres-Garcia (1874-1949) that is entitled "Matera
Constructiva." An oil on incised wood panel, it measures
12 by 7 1/2 inches. It was created in 1930. It has an estimate
of $80,000 to $100,000. It sold for $96,000.
is a very strong abstraction
by Carlos Merida (1891-1984). Entitled "Arabesco Numero 1,"
it is mixed media on artist's board and measures 24 3/8 by 17
3/4 inches. It was painted in 1966. It has a modest estimate of
$35,000 to $45,000. It failed to sell.
is a bravura colored
pencil on paper mounted on masonite by Claudio Bravo (b. 1936).
Entitled "Gallo Floral," it measures 40 1/8 by 28 3/8
inches and was executed in 1963. It has a modest estimate of $35,000
to 445,000. It sold for $48,000.
Lot 58, "Visus Tactus," is a
painting of drapery by Bravo. An oil on canvas, it measures 78
1/2 by 58 3/4 inches and was painted in 2000. It has an estimate
of $350,000 to $450,000. It sold for $688,000.
of "The Four Seasons,"
gouaches on paper, each 1943-4 and about 9 3/8 by 10 1/2 inches,
by Remedios Varo (1908-1963) were auctioned individually. Lot
26, "Invierno, Las Cuatro Estaciones (Winter, the Four Seasons),"
has an estimate of $25,000 to $35,000. It and the others
is a lovely study of
a cabinet with many colorful objects by Maria Izqierdo (1902-1955).
Entitled "Alacena," it is an oil on canvas that measures
41 1/4 by 33 1/2 inches and was executed in 1942. It has an estimate
of $200,000 to $250,000. It failed to sell.