Lot 13
  • 13


300,000 - 500,000 EUR
bidding is closed


  • Antonio Saura
  • Grand Curé II 
  • oil on canvas
  • 237,5 x 190 cm; 93 ½ x 74 13/16 in.
  • Executed in 1960.


Galerie Pierre Matisse, New York
Estate of Pierre Matisse, New York
Collection Rodolphe Stadler, Paris
Estate of Stephano Polastri, Milan
Natalie Seroussi, Paris


New York, Jason McCoy Inc., Antonio Saura / Paintings from the sixties, 5 November - 14 December 1991
Lugano, Museo d'Arte Moderna della Citta di Lugano, Antonio Saura, 4 septembre - 6 novembre 1994; catalogue, no. 22 (illustrated)
Malmö, Konsthall, Antonio Saura, 12 September - 9 November 1997
Toulouse, Les Abattoirs, Une Annee Saura, 30 June - 14 September 2008

Catalogue Note

Paint what exists behind objects.
Paint the space where lost thoughts sleep.
Paint great silence.
Paint suffering. Antonio Saura

Belonging to one of Antonio Saura's most iconic themes alongside his Cruxifictions, Grand Cure II (Large Priest) was executed
at a turning point in the painter's artistic career. He founded the vanguard group El Paso in 1957 in the wake of violent student
demonstrations which had just taken place in Madrid, and led it until its dissolution in 1960. Although the group's purported
ambition was to develop a new pictorial language within the context of the European avant-garde, and had been likened to other
expressionist movements of its time - such as the AbEx in America and Art Informel in France - Saura's strongest influence
came from the Spanish Old Masters he so admired during his childhood. The present work's religious subject and awe-inspiring
scale testify of Saura's allegiance to tradition, whilst the gestural brushwork and spontaneous technique are resolutely modern:
"With Saura, the image is distinct, clearly stated, centered, framed. The only violence comes from the frenzy of brushstrokes
that set the proportions flying, that cut into the flesh, that bring the viscera up to the surface." (Guy Scarpetta, in Antonio Saura
(exh. cat.), Museo d'Arte Moderna della Città di Lugano, Lugano, 1994, p. 44)

© Succession Antonio Saura / www.antoniosaura.org / A+V Agencia de Creadores Visuales 2018.

This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity established by the Fondation Archives Antonio Saura.