signed, signed in Chinese; signed, titled and dated 28.5.65 on the reverse
oil on canvas
65 by 92 cm. 25½ by 36¼ in.
framed: 84.5 by 111 cm. 33¼ by 43¾ in.
The authenticity of this work has been confirmed by the Fondation Zao Wou-Ki. The work will be included in the forthcoming Catalogue Raisonné currently being prepared by Françoise Marquet and Yann Hendgen. It is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.
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This work is in very good condition. Close inspection reveals some lifting to the taped edge in the lower left hand corner. No restoration is apparent when examined under ultra-violet light.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.
Kootz Gallery, New York
Galerie de France, Paris
Private Collection, Brussels (acquired from the above circa 1975)
Private Collection, acquired by descent
Sotheby’s, Paris, 5 December 2018, Lot 17
Acquired from the above by the present owner
Jean Leymarie, Zao Wou-Ki, Barcelona 1978, p. 292, no. 349, illustrated
Jean Leymarie, Zao Wou-Ki, Paris 1986, p. 332, no. 381, illustrated
London, Lévy Gorvy, Un Art Autre, April - July 2019
"Compared to his earlier works, Zao Wou-ki’s paintings from the ’60s were more extensive, evocative and proficient in bringing out his unique temperament and natural character" Pierre Schneider
"There is a sense of mysticism in Zao Wou-ki’s paintings, a sense of mystery that is completely natural and not in the least bit contrived—evident from the myriad conflicts, nuanced deviations and nature of relativity depicted on the canvas, from which boundless imageries are born, and become parts of a macro universe under his paintbrush." Daniel Marchesseau
28.5.65 exemplifies Zao Wou-Ki’s distinctive style. Executed during the artist’s Hurricane period (1959 – 1972), which is considered to be the high point of his career, the calligraphic details and smoky accents that form the composition of this canvas demonstrate the manner in which this artist situated his oeuvre in between Western and Chinese traditions, taking influence from each. In its appreciation, we are reminded of the assertions made by feted French curator Daniel Marchessau: "There is a sense of mysticism in Zao Wou-ki’s paintings, a sense of mystery that is completely natural and not in the least bit contrived—evident from the myriad conflicts, nuanced deviations and nature of relativity depicted on the canvas, from which boundless imageries are born, and become parts of a macro universe under his paintbrush."