On 27 January 2012, Sotheby’s Old Master and 19th Century European Art sale will present a wide range of works for collectors seeking fine paintings and drawings from the Italian, Dutch and Flemish Baroque to the French Romantics, Realists and the Barbizon School.
We are especially delighted to offer thirteen works by Edouard Detaille and Alphonse Marie de Neuville from The Forbes Collection. This important group of studies for and fragments from the Panorama of the Battle of Champigny will have its own special exhibit in Sotheby’s Second Floor galleries. The battle, which took place between 30 November and 2 December 1870, was a part of several major conflicts near the end of the Franco-Prussian War where the French Army of National Defense sought to break the German siege of the city of Paris. Led by General Auguste-Alexandre Ducrot, French troops made a valiant attempt in the bitter cold of an early winter to first take the villages of Champigny and Bry, only to lose them two days later in a debilitating stalemate that only achieved great loss of life on both sides. Such heroic attempts to uphold the honor of France in the face of overwhelming odds retained a strong hold on the imagination and the hearts of the French nation long after the armistice concluded in May of 1871.
Paintings from the Circle of El Greco and Followers of Panini and Joos van Cleve headline the Old Master Paintings section of the sale, while oils by Felix Ziem, Ercole Calvi, Montague Dawson, and Edouard Cortes highlight the diverse offerings in the 19th century half.