On 30 March, Sotheby's France concluded the sale of the collection of Jacques Bacri, one of the greatest art dealers of the mid-20th century. The auction reached a total of almost €4 million with 71% of the lots sold above their high estimate. These excellent results eloquently rewarded Jacques Bacri's refined and erudite taste in many fields: from paintings and drawings, to decorative arts and sculptures. The exceptional quality of the works was confirmed by enthusiastic bidding from both French and international collectors.
One such work, the stunning Portrait d’Anne de Pisseleu, duchesse d’Étampes by Corneille de Lyon, soared to €559,500.
Bacri Frères – Antiquaires,our upcomingsale in March 2017 will feature the collection of a great mid-20th-century art dealer. The term “antiquaire” is used here in the early 20th-century sense, that is to say the equivalent of the “connoisseur” of the 18th Century: an art lover and dealer. The Bacri brothers’ are considered as great collectors and influential dealers with a passion for art and beautiful objects. Their collection combines the personal taste of art lovers and the professional expertise of antique dealers. It is easier to sell something you love, and thus, the combination of the collector and the dealer makes perfect sense.
The Bacri brothers demonstrated a preference for the Northern Schools in their collecting and we can thank them for many discoveries that are now housed in some of the world’s greatest museums. To mention a few: a Lucas Cranach at the Kunsthalle of Bremen and a portrait attributed to Corneille de Lyon today owned by the New York Metropolitan Museum.
The works featured in the sale reflect the unfailing taste of the brothers. The paintings section features masterpieces by great northern painters, such as a fragment of a retable by Gérard David’s followers; a portrait of Francois I’s favorite Anne de Pisseleu, Duchess d’ Étampes by Corneille de La Haye, known as Corneille de Lyon; and two panels of a tryptic by Maître Johannes, a painter from Brabant from whom only five paintings are known for certain. The Bacri collection also includes many high-quality drawings.
In this collection, medieval tapestries, of which Jacques Bacri was a specialist, echo Flemish Old Masters, ancient torsos mingle with Burgundian sculptures, and remarkable Iznik ceramics combine with Chinese porcelain vases and Sèvres. This is another aspect of the brothers’ collecting style: creating a dialogue between works, periods and civilizations.
A selection of highlights from the auction will be on view from 18 to 24 March in Paris.