By Carter B. Horsley
The day auction of Impressionist & Modern
Art at Sotheby's November 5, 2008 is highlighted by several works
by Edouard Vuillard (1868-1940), two wonderful paintings by Gustave
Loiseau and good examples by Wassily Kandinsky, and Fernand Léger.
Lot 157 is a very complete and colorful composition
of the artist's mother sitting by a window during a snowy day.
Glue-based distemper on card, it measures 28 3/4 by 24 7/8 inches
and was painted in 1918. It has a modest estimate of $1,000,000
to $1,500,000. It sold for $962,500 including the buyer's premium
as do all results mentioned in this article.
Lot 163 is another Vuillard interior scene
that is entitled "Le Modele au Chapeau Violet." A gouache,
distemper and pastel on card, it measures 25 5/8 by 19 5/8 inches
and was painted in 1912. It has an estimate of $100,000 to $150,000.
It failed to sell.
Another good Vuillard is Lot 161, "Le
Lacet de la Bottine," an oil on card that measures 24 3/4
by 18 1/4 inches. Executed in 1917-8, it has a modest estimate
of $300,000 to $500,000. It sold for $421,500.
Lot 225 is an excellent and quite large landscape
by Edouoard Vuillard. Entitled "Prairie au bord de la Mer
à Loctudy," it is distemper, pastel and pencil on
paper laid down on canvas. It measures 21 5/8 by 62 5/8 inches.
Executed in 1912 it has a modest estimate of $150,000 to $200,000.
It sold for $110,500.
Beach scenes by Eugene Boudin (1824-1898) have
always been very popular and are often cited as precursors to
work by the Impressionists. Lot 145, "Vuillers, Scene de
Plage," is a particularly fine example of his abnility to
create a very pleasing composition in a strong but sketchy manner.
An oil on panel, it measures 8 1/2 by 16 1/8 inches and was painted
in 1894. It has an estimate of $400,000 to $600,000. It sold
Lot 115 is a superb Cubist still life by Jean
Metzinger (1883-1956) that is entitled "Compotier et Cruche
Décorée de Cerfs." An oil on canvas, it measures
36 1/4 by 26 1/4 inches and was painted circa 1911-2. It has a
modest estimate of $400,000 to $600,000. It sold for $422,500.
Lot 197 is a lovely watercolor abstraction
by Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944) that measures 10 7/8 by 9 1/4
inches. Executed circa 1922, it has an estimate of $300,000 to
$400,000. It sold for $242,500.
Lot 203 is a very fine and strong composition
by Fernand Léger (1881-1955). Entitled "Nature Morte,"itis
an oil on canvas that measures 25 3/4 by 36 1/4 inches. Executed
in 1928, it once belonged to G. David Thompson of Pittsburgh.
It has an estimate of $800,000 to $1,200,000. It sold for $662,500.
Lot 182 is a lovely still life by André
Masson (1896-1987) that was executed in 1924. An oil on canvas,
it measures 24 by 15 inches and has an estimate of $250,000 to
$350,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 234 is a very strong painting of a lake
by Maurice de Vlaminck (1876-1958). An oil on canvas, it measures
23 7/8 by 28 7/8 inches and was painted circa 1909-1910. It is
very painterly and a good composition. It has a modest estimateof
$300,000 to $400,000. It sold for $338,500.
Lot 226 is a very large and quite lyrical seascape
by Henri Martin (1860-1943). Entitled "Coucher de Soleil
au bord de la Mer," it is an oil on canvas that measures
83 by 98 1/2 inches. It was painted circa 1898-9. It has an estimate
of $800,000 to $1,200,000. It failed to sell.
The auction also has two excellent paintings
by Gustave Loiseau (1865-1935). Lot 233, "Moret-sur-Loing,"
is a wonderfully impressionistic river scene with a great deal
of bravura brushwork. An oil on canvas, it measures 24 by 36 1/2
inches. It has a very modest estimate of $60,000 to $80,000. It
failed to sell. Lot 170, "Arbes au bord de Riviere,"
is an oil on canvas that measures 26 by 32 inches. It was painted
in 1899. It is a lovely landscape that Alfred Sisley would be
very proud to have done. It has a conservative estimate of $180,000
to $250,000. It sold for $218,500.