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SHAPING A LEGACY: SCULPTURE FROM THE FINN FAMILY COLLECTION

Jean Arp
TORSE DES PYRÉNÉES
Estimate
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Guaranteed Property
Guaranteed Property. The seller of lots with this symbol has been guaranteed a minimum price from one auction or a series of auctions. If every lot in a catalogue is guaranteed, the Conditions of Sale will so state and this symbol will not be used for each lot.
1,500,0002,500,000
LOT SOLD. 4,850,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT
16

SHAPING A LEGACY: SCULPTURE FROM THE FINN FAMILY COLLECTION

Jean Arp
TORSE DES PYRÉNÉES
Estimate
Irrevocable Bids
Lots with this symbol indicate that a party has provided Sotheby’s with an irrevocable bid on the lot that will be executed during the sale at a value that ensures that the lot will sell. The irrevocable bidder, who may bid in excess of the irrevocable bid, will be compensated based on the final hammer price in the event he or she is not the successful bidder or may receive a fixed fee in the event he or she is the successful bidder. If the irrevocable bidder is the successful bidder, the fixed fee (if applicable) for providing the irrevocable bid may be netted against the irrevocable bidder’s obligation to pay the full purchase price for the lot and the purchase price reported for the lot shall be net of such fixed fee. If the irrevocable bid is not secured until after the printing of the auction catalogue, a pre-lot announcement will be made indicating that there is an irrevocable bid on the lot. If the irrevocable bidder is advising anyone with respect to the lot, Sotheby’s requires the irrevocable bidder to disclose his or her financial interest in the lot. If an agent is advising you or bidding on your behalf with respect to a lot identified as being subject to an irrevocable bid, you should request that the agent disclose whether or not he or she has a financial interest in the lot.
Guaranteed Property
Guaranteed Property. The seller of lots with this symbol has been guaranteed a minimum price from one auction or a series of auctions. If every lot in a catalogue is guaranteed, the Conditions of Sale will so state and this symbol will not be used for each lot.
1,500,0002,500,000
LOT SOLD. 4,850,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale

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New York

Jean Arp
1886-1966
TORSE DES PYRÉNÉES
Inscribed with the monogram, numbered 1/3 and with the foundry mark Susse Fondr Paris
Bronze
Height: 40 1/2 in.
102.8 cm
Conceived in 1959 and cast in January 1962.
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Provenance

Sidney Janis Gallery, New York

Acquired from the above on May 13, 1963

Exhibited

London, The Arts Council at the Tate Gallery, Jean Arp, Sculpture, Reliefs, Paintings, Collages, Tapestries, 1962, no. 39

Paris, Musée National d’Art Moderne, Arp, 1962, no. 123

New York, Sidney Janis Gallery, Exhibition of Sculpture by Jean Arp in Marble, Bronze and Wood Relief from the Years 1923-63, 1963, no. 20, illustrated in the catalogue (titled Tors edit des Pyrénées)

Literature

Giuseppe Marchiori, Arp, London, 1964, no. 120, illustrated p. 138

Eduard Trier, Jean Arp Sculpture, His Last Ten Years, New York, 1968, no. 188, illustration of the marble version p. 19

Kai Fischer, Hans Arp, Sculptures – A Critical Survey, Berlin, 2012, no. 188, illustration of another cast pp. 140 & 319

Catalogue Note

Torse des Pyrénées is an important example of Arp's mature oeuvre. Conceived in 1959, the present work embodies the transcendent physical beauty that came to be expected of the artist at the height of his career.  Its elegant, elongated form is subtly reminiscent of a female torso. This sense of purity bears strong stylistic, technical and poetic affinities with the work of Constantin Brancusi. As Stephanie Poley observed: "Arp was concerned with purity, with being free, being independent of everything unpleasant and limiting and with the active, constant emission of positive energy as well as its perception" (S. Poley in Arp (exhibition catalogue), Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis, 1987, p. 229).

At the heart of Arp's artistic triumph is the organic beauty of his sculptures, which seems to manifest from a vision unencumbered by any formal constraints. Since his involvement with Dada and Surrealism in the 1920s and 1930s, Arp's sculpture was recognized for its ability to transcend conventional boundaries and extend its interpretation to any given viewer's expectations. Torse des Pyrénées  evidences some of the central themes of Arp's original manifesto: "All things, and man as well, should be like nature, without measure... I wanted to create new appearances, to extract new forms from man" (quoted in S. Fauchereau, Hans Arp, Barcelona, 1988, p. 15). 

Often guided by chance and intuition, Arp enjoyed creating irregular shapes evocative of natural forms and parts of the human anatomy. The curves of Torse des Pyrénées evoke various parts of the female torso captured in Arp's amorphous expression of the figure. Although he developed a highly abstract visual vocabulary in his sculptures, Arp always established a connection between these biomorphic shapes and elements of the natural world in such a way as to unveil the mysterious and poetic elements hidden in everyday forms.

Torse des Pyrénées was originally conceived in Pyrenean marble and later cast in an edition of three bronzes. Another version from the bronze edition was formerly in the Karl Ströher collection and now resides in the permanent collection of MMK, Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt.

Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale

|
New York