Lot 2
  • 2

Aristide Maillol

Estimate
600,000 - 800,000 GBP
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Description

  • Aristide Maillol
  • Nu debout se coiffant (Baigneuse aux bras lev├ęs)
  • inscribed with the monogram M, with the foundry mark Alexis Rudier Fondeur Paris and numbered 5/6
  • bronze
  • height: 157.5cm.
  • 62in.

Provenance

Otto Gerson Gallery, Inc., New York (acquired by 1962)

Mrs Percy Uris, Brookville, Long Island (acquired from the above. Sold by her estate: Christie's, New York, 13th November 1985, lot 210)

Private Collection (purchased at the above sale. Sold: Sotheby's, New York, 2nd November 2010, lot 6)

Purchased at the above sale by the present owner

Exhibited

New York, Otto Gerson Gallery, Inc., The Nude in Sculpture, 1961, no. 21, illustrated in the catalogue

Literature

John Rewald, Maillol, Paris, 1939, illustration of the smaller version p. 70; illustration of the plaster p. 71

Hermann Uhde-Bernays, Aristide Maillol, Dresden, 1957, illustration of the smaller version p. 43

Waldemar George, Aristide Maillol, Neuchâtel, 1965, illustration of another cast p. 199

Denis Chevalier, Maillol, New York, 1970, illustration of another cast p. 79

Aristide Maillol: 1861-1944 (exhibition catalogue), The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1975, illustration of another cast p. 83

Waldemar George, Aristide Maillol et l'âme de la sculpture, Neuchâtel, 1977, illustration of another cast p. 201

Bertrand Lorquin, Maillol aux Tuileries, Paris, 1991, illustration of another cast p. 14

Aristide Maillol (exhibition catalogue), Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lausanne, Lausanne, 1996, mentioned p. 52; illustration of the smaller version p. 53

Bertrand Lorquin, Aristide Maillol, London, 2002, illustration of another cast p. 102

Le Musée Maillol s'expose (exhibition catalogue), Paris, 2008, illustration of another cast in colour p. 65

Condition

Rich, mottled, dark green patina. There are some minor surface scratches and abrasions to the patina with associated retouching, only visible on close inspection and consistent with age. This work is in good condition.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."

Catalogue Note

The beauty of the female body fascinated Maillol throughout his career, and the present sculpture is one of his most idealized representations. The sculpture is a medley of formal quotations that call to mind some of the greatest sculpture of the classical age. Standing with a raised foot forward and her arms akimbo behind her head, the figure could be considered a reinterpretation of the Nike of Samothrace. But Maillol's idealized first rendering of this figure at the beginning of the 20th century is emphatically avant-garde, characterised by a sleek linearity that would define the Modernist aesthetic. Bertrand Lorquin describes the true artistry at the heart of Maillol's work: 'Maillol's sculpture achieves an ideal balance through the accuracy of its proportions as well as the harmoniousness of its compositions. Paul Valéry once said that sculpture is an art full of surprises, and at each moment the sculptor chooses his viewpoint among an infinite array of possibilities. A Maillol statue is a perpetual revelation of the type of beauty which the sculptor invented' (B. Lorquin, Aristide Maillol, op. cit., pp. 102-03).

Maillol created a smaller version of this sculpture in 1898, and enlarged it for a marble version in 1930 at the request of his Danish patron Johannes Rump.  According to the late Dina Vierny, there were eight bronzes cast from this larger marble, including a numbered edition of six. Other casts from this edition are in the collections of the Musée National d'Art Occidental in Tokyo and the Tuileries Gardens in Paris.

Olivier Lorquin has confirmed that the present sculpture was cast during the artist's lifetime and that Maillol himself supervised the patination of the bronze.