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Property from a Private French Collector

Sayed Haider Raza


Auction Closed

October 26, 03:08 PM GMT


180,000 - 250,000 GBP

Lot Details


Property from a Private French Collector

Sayed Haider Raza

1922 - 2016


Oil on canvas

Signed and dated 'RAZA '63' lower right and further signed, dated, titled and inscribed 'RAZA / P. 488 '63 / "Eglise" / 20F' on reverse

73 x 60 cm. (28 ¾ x 23 ⅝ in.)

Painted in 1963

Galerie Lara Vincy, Paris
Acquired directly from the above, circa 1963
Acquired from the above, Paris, 2004
This work will be included in a revised edition of SH RAZA, Catalogue Raisonné, Volume I (1958 - 1971) by Anne Macklin on behalf of The Raza Foundation, New Delhi (Image ref SR3990)

The current work from 1963 by Sayed Haider Raza is highly emblematic of the artist’s canvases from this period. Raza painted the French countryside in the riotous hues of the Indian miniature, in a style which fused the Modernist metaphor with his frenetic exploration of color and his musings on abstraction. Raza would later refer to his own style as ‘lyrical abstraction’. 

Receipt of the prestigious Prix de la Critique in 1956 (Raza was the first foreign-born artist to receive this award in France) afforded Raza both international recognition and the freedom to leave Paris for extended periods of time to travel throughout his beloved French countryside. Of these personal journeys, Raza explains: “ … The chapels, churches and crosses [of the French countryside] touched me very deeply. I wanted my paintings to express the feeling of fervor and human tension that burned within me.” (S. H. Raza quoted in M. Imbert, Raza: An Introduction to his Painting, Delhi, 2000, p. 37)

Raza combined these impulses to forge a unique idiom where space and color inform each other. Throughout the late 1950s and early 1960s, he turned for inspiration to Provence and the Maritime Alps, creating an explosive, expressionist body of work of which the present painting is a fine example.