379
379

THE COLLECTION OF LORD AND LADY ATTENBOROUGH

Georges Rouault
LA SAINTE FACE
JUMP TO LOT
379

THE COLLECTION OF LORD AND LADY ATTENBOROUGH

Georges Rouault
LA SAINTE FACE
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale

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London

Georges Rouault
1871 - 1958
LA SAINTE FACE
signed G. Rouault (lower right)
oil on panel
56.1 by 47.2cm., 22 1/8 by 18 5/8 in.
Painted in 1940-48.
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Provenance

Ambroise Vollard, Paris
Madame De Galéa, Paris
Rabaté
Arthur Tooth & Sons, London
Acquired from the above by the late owner in June 1965

Literature

Bernard Dorival & Isabelle Rouault, Rouault, L'Œuvre peint, Monte Carlo, 1988, vol. II, no. 2392, illustrated p. 242

Catalogue Note

The following group of five works were in the private collection of Lord and Lady Attenborough for many years. Richard Attenborough was a celebrated English award-winning film actor, director and producer. He was also the President of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA). Richard Attenborough and his wife, the English actress Sheila Sim, were married for 69 years, during which time they passionately collected works of art for their London home. Parts of their impressive collection of Modern British art, including works by Laurence Lowry, Graham Sutherland, Henry Moore, Ben Nicholson and Edward Burra, were sold at Sotheby's London in 2009, and more recently in November 2016, alongside a large collection of Picasso ceramics acquired during their summer holidays near Vallauris in the south of France.

Powerful yet also profoundly meditative, La Sainte Face depicts the head of Christ in seeming isolation from the world around him. Georges Rouault was a deeply religious figure whose art intimately reflected his beliefs and devotion. James Thrall Soby notes that: ‘to Rouault, [religion] was… to become the sum - or very nearly the sum - of personal experience and emotion’ (quoted in Georges Rouault Paintings and Prints (exhibition catalogue), The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1947, p. 9). Having originally trained as an apprentice in a stained glass workshop, Rouault’s distinctive style owed much to his life-long fascination with this medium, with the bold black lines used to delineate form within his paintings referencing in particular his interest in medieval glass. The present work was a particular favourite of Lord and Lady Attenborough’s, and was displayed in a prominent setting above their fireplace in the drawing room of their home, Old Friars.

Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale

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London