217

PROPERTY FROM AN IMPORTANT PRIVATE COLLECTION

Manolo Valdés
INFANTA MARGARITA
Estimate
250,000350,000
LOT SOLD. 322,000 USD (Hammer Price with Buyer's Premium)
JUMP TO LOT
217

PROPERTY FROM AN IMPORTANT PRIVATE COLLECTION

Manolo Valdés
INFANTA MARGARITA
Estimate
250,000350,000
LOT SOLD. 322,000 USD (Hammer Price with Buyer's Premium)
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Contemporary Curated

|
New York

Manolo Valdés
B.1942
INFANTA MARGARITA
oil, spray enamel and burlap collage on burlap
96 by 56 in. 243.8 by 142.2 cm.
Executed circa 1990.
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Provenance

Galeria Freites, Caracas
Acquired by the present owner from the above

Catalogue Note

"Velázquez as a point of reference has always been the testing ground for Valdés' paraphrases. Each new research effort has been carried out on the fallow land of Velázquez's figures [...] Valdés falls back on Velázquez's work time and again to move forward with his own imagery." (Kosme de Baraño cited in Exh. Cat., Paris, Ministère de Culture, Las Tres Dimensiones en Valdés, 2005, p. 15)

One of the most original and prolific Spanish Contemporary artists, Manolo Valdés draws subjective inspiration from art historical motifs. Using his own immensely personal and visual language to skillfully play tribute to many of the Old Masters, Valdés uses their work as a pretext to create an entirely new aesthetic object through which to examine ideas of cultural inheritance and aesthetic continuity. His approach to art is to focus not on the subject, but on the way art is created; for Valdés, the subject is simply the first step. Throughout his career, Valdés has explored his artistic practice through a variety of materials and media, achieving a rawness and tangible quality in his art that is both powerful and evocative.

In this magnificent example, Valdés draws his subject from the Infanta Margarita figure in Diego Velázquez's multi-layered masterpiece Las Meninas, painted in 1656. By focusing the subject of his artwork on this solitary figure and thus removing her from her historical context, Valdés creates a completely new and purely formal approach to this iconic figure, eliminating all anecdotes, her regal surroundings and her Meninas, concentrating solely on the image. It is not therefore a mere mirroring of Velázquez's iconic Infanta, but rather a confrontation with it -- a discovery of new possibilities and approaches. Infanta Magarita in its monumental scale cannot help but affect its surroundings and in doing creates a dialogue with them. Despite its monumental size, however, there remains an underlining fragility and femininity in this painting which remains powerful and rather arresting. By augmenting the figure's scale and minimizing details, especially to her face, Valdés creates an abstract expressionism which further places the subject into a modern setting. Through Infanta Magarita, we see Valdés' continuous exploration with material. The artist uses mixed media on rough burlap, to create a built up, at times rough and tactile surface, leaving surface irregularities and imperfections visible, which emphasizes the importance to him of an expressive and experimental process.  

Contemporary Curated

|
New York