Lot 5
  • 5

Joan Miró

250,000 - 350,000 GBP
bidding is closed


  • Joan Miró
  • Sans titre
  • signed Miró, dated 11/XII/1938 and dedicated pour Florence Löeb (lower right)
  • India ink and bodycolour on card
  • 13.8 by 17.9cm.
  • 5 3/8 by 7in.


Florence Löeb, Paris (a gift from the artist)

Galerie du XXe Siècle, Paris

Acquired from the above by the present owner


Jacques Dupin & Ariane Lelong-Mainaud, Joan Miró. Catalogue raisonné. Drawings, Paris, 2010, vol. II, no. 871, illustrated in colour p. 47

Catalogue Note

A striking combination of colour and lines, Sans titre exemplifies Miró’s innovative approach to painting. Describing a slightly earlier group of works Jacques Dupin noted Miró’s imaginative handling of paint, writing: ‘Miró had always been fond of the scrawls on walls, and they are found in great abundance on the walls of Barcelona. The graphism here evokes graffiti by its freedom and spontaneity, but it also expresses very simple, furtive movements like the flight of insects, birds, or curling smoke. All gesture and light spots, these works plunge us into the freshness of childhood impressions, still green in the painter’s memory and unimpeded in their flow’ (J. Dupin, Joan Miró. Life and Work, London, 1962, p. 298). This description seems equally appropriate to the present work which in its scumbled application of watercolour and ink seems to anticipate some of the visual experiments of the Abstract Expressionists.

The child-like nature of the work – which is not to imply an unnecessary naivety but rather a freeness and originality in its expressive force – makes it a particularly endearing present for a young girl. The work is dedicated to Florence Löeb; Florence, who would have been eight years old at the time, was the daughter of the celebrated and visionary gallery-owner Pierre Löeb, the Parisian dealer of many of the greatest modern artists of the inter-war period, including Picasso, Giacometti and Miró. That the work was given to her adds a touching coda to a composition of remarkable imagination and vitality.