Lot 354
  • 354

MAURICE DE VLAMINCK | Vase de fleurs

300,000 - 500,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Maurice de Vlaminck
  • Vase de fleurs
  • Signed Vlaminck (lower right)
  • Oil on canvas
  • 25 1/2  by 21 1/4  in.
  • 64.8 by 54 cm
  • Painted in 1908.


William C. Kennedy, New York
Reader's Digest, New York (acquired from the above on November 26, 1956 and sold: Sotheby's, New York, November 16, 1998, lot 26)
Private Collection, Switzerland (acquired at the above sale and sold: Sotheby's, New York, May 9, 2007, lot 248)
Acquired at the above sale


New York, M. Knoedler & Co., Inc., The Reader's Digest Collection, 1963, n.n., illustrated in the catalogue
Tokyo, Palaceside Building, Forty Paintings from The Reader's Digest Collection, 1966, no. 38
New York, Wildenstein & Co., Inc. & traveling, Selections from The Reader's Digest Collection, 1985-86, n.n., illustrated in the catalogue
Auckland, Auckland City Gallery, The Reader's Digest Collection: Manet to Picasso, 1989, n.n., illustrated in the catalogue

Catalogue Note

Vlaminck gained notoriety as an artist when he exhibited at the Salon d'Automne in 1905. The critic Louis Vauxcelles had seen a small Florentine style sculpture surrounded by the work of Camoin, Derain, Marquet, Matisse and Vlaminck in room 7 and wrote that it was like seeing a Donatello surrounded by wild beasts, or "fauves." These artists further advanced the color experimentation and the simplification of form of their Post-Impressionist predecessors, creating compositions that were shocking in their radiance and dynamic in their liveliness of brushwork. Color, in short, was completely set free and moved from a vehicle of naturalistic representation to a mode of emotive expression.

Strongly influenced by van Gogh, whom he venerated, Vlaminck's Fauve canvases were stridently colored and boldly executed to such an extent that in 1907, the year of his first solo exhibition at the Galerie Vollard, he was christened "the wildest of the Fauves." Shortly afterward, however, Vlaminck would abandon the excesses of his Fauve manner in favor of a more subdued approach strongly influenced by Cézanne. The master of Aix was, of course, a major source of inspiration for many artists at the time. Rather than follow Cézanne's innovations to their logical conclusions, Vlaminck used Cézanne's example as a restraining device, reigning in the gestural audacities and coloristic excesses of his Fauve years. Painted at this very moment, the present picture is thus a transitional work, highlighting the vibrancy of the artist's Fauve palette in the color flower buds against a muted Cézannian backdrop. 

Vase de fleurs once formed part of the Reader's Digest Collection, begun in the early 1940s by Lila Acheson Wallace, who co-founded the magazine with her husband, DeWitt, in 1922. Committed to creating a more visually pleasing and intellectually stimulating work environment, Mrs. Wallace acquired over 8,000 French Impressionist and early Modern works to form one of the first corporate collections in the world. 

This work will be included in the forthcoming Vlaminck digital database, being prepared under the sponsorship of the Wildenstein Plattner Institute, Inc..