This sale’s total of €4.6 million reflected the demanding nature of today's market, with works of true novelty and originality required to stimulate the international collectors who flock to Paris in search of fine works with a distinguished provenance.
In all, three individual world records were set during the sale. The first went to Louise Moillon for her Still life with Peaches on a Ledge (1629). This oil on panel had been kept in the same French private collection for nearly seventy years, and led the sale on €1,033,500. The second, François Watteau de Lille’s Ball in Tivoli Gardens, dated An VII (1799), achieved €265,500. The third record went to a collaborative work by Willem Cornelisz Duyster and Monogrammist PW: Figures in Classical Gallery (1632), from a private collection in southern France. It sold for €205,500.
This June’s sale contains works of exceptional quality and provenance, with the French school of the 17th and 18th centuries particularly well represented. Highlights include the spectacular still life by Louise Moillon – the first known signed and dated work by the artist and one of the earliest French still lifes. The brilliant quality of the painting combined with a simple composition reveals an artist who has already achieved a mastery of her art, showing us, at only nineteen years old, a work both intense and monumental.
The 18th century reveals its originality and sweetness with the remarkable Le Bal de Tivoli by François Watteau de Lille, and the spectacular Portrait of Jean-René Vestier by his father. Flemish and Dutch schools are also represented with the large panel, Noah's Ark, by Jacob Savery the Younger.
The second part of the sale will offer a wide selection of 19th-century paintings and drawings. Two studies by Pierre-Paul Prud’hon, Minerva leading the Arts Genius to Immortality (1818), are the only works known for the Palais du Louvre that were never finished.
The sale will also feature four drawings by Delacroix, including one study for the actress Rachel playing Phaedra, a nude study for Mlle Rose and a group of French landscapes from private collections with works by Courbet, Trouillebert, Lépine, Diaz and Daubigny.