Lot 49
  • 49

Joan Miró

2,000,000 - 3,000,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Joan Miró
  • Tête, oiseau, étoile
  • Signed Miró (lower right); also signed, titled and dated 17/II/76 on the reverse
  • Oil on canvas
  • 36 1/8 by 28 1/2 in.
  • 91.8 by 72.4 cm


Galerie Maeght, Paris

C. Lombardi, Milan

Marisa del Re Gallery, New York

Private Collection, Connecticut (acquired from the above in 1985 and sold: Sotheby's, New York, May 9, 2002, lot 286)

Private Collection (acquired at the above sale and sold: Sotheby's, New York, November 8, 2006, lot 448)

Acquired at the above sale by the present owner



Jacques Dupin & Ariane Lelong-Mainaud, Joan Miró, Catalogue raisonné. Paintings, 1976-1981, vol. VI, Paris, 2000, no. 1696, illustrated p. 25

Catalogue Note

The inaugural exhibition of the Joan Miró Foundation in Barcelona took place in 1976, presenting an extraordinary collection of Miró’s work to be housed their permanently.  Although Miró himself was deeply involved in the planning and the design of the foundatio n he found time and energy to devote to painting.   The present composition, which dates from February of that year, exemplifies the bold and expressive aesthetic that dominated his paintings during this celebratory moment of his career.

In his catalogue raisonné on the artist, Jacques Dupin characterizes the spirit of these pictures from the final chapter of the artist's career:  “During the final years of his life, Miró continued to execute magnificent paintings, densely inhabited insurgent dances.  Others were repetitions in a minor key.  On other occasions, these paintings were redeemed by a poignant tension, being dramatically pared down… these paintings testify not only to an urgency, a haste, and a desire for immediate fulfillment, but also to Miró’s acceptance of the inevitable contradiction of his energy, and the questions posed by such inevitability” (J. Dupin, Miró, New York, 1993, p. 351).

The present work reaffirms Miró’s love of nature and fascination of painting female forms in conjunction with birds and stars.  The distinctive characteristic of these later works, however, is the pronounced use of black in relation to the other colors.  The paint is often applied in a spontaneous fashion, splashed on to the canvas or allowed to drip at will.  The combination of the black paint and the spontaneous technique lends the present work an added sense of force.