Lot 29
  • 29

JÁNOS VASZARY | Sailors in Portorož, Slovenia

80,000 - 120,000 GBP
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  • János Vaszary
  • Sailors in Portorož, Slovenia
  • signed Vaszary upper left
  • tempera on canvas
  • 84 by 73cm., 33 by 28¾in.


A gift from the artist to the parents of Francis Bator; thence by descent

Catalogue Note

Painted circa 1930, the present work is from Vaszary’s best period, characterized by thick, contour lines, bright colours and diagonal perspectives. Vaszary was an excellent colourist and his imaginative art, sensitive to modern trends, merits him an important place in the history of twentieth century Hungarian painting. A pupil of Bertalan Székely at the Budapest School of Decorative Arts, Vaszary moved on to study in Munich and then Paris at the Académie Julian. Experimenting with a wide range of avant-garde artistic styles, from Art Nouveau to Fauvism and Post-Impressionism, it was from the 1920s that Vaszary started developing his distinctive style, inspired by the Ecole de Paris and notably Dufy, Matisse, Derain and Van Dongen.

In the 1930s Vaszary spent many of his summers in Italy, travelling between the Adriatic coast and the resorts of the Riviera. He painted and sketched wherever he could, recording shore scenes, sailing boats, and the increasing number of holidaymakers on the Italian beaches of Rapallo, Venice, or Portorož (also known as Portorose ), a seaside resort in modern-day Slovenia. Whether sketching a group of sailors in a moment of rest on the promenade, or a boat sailing off towards a faraway island, paintings such as the present work convey the joy, the freedom and the carefree state of mind of the Mediterranean way of life.

For a related work see Haulisch Lenke, Vaszary, Budapest, 1978, no. 181.