Oeuvres sur Papier

Live Auction: 19 June 2020 • 2:30 PM CEST • Paris
Oeuvres sur Papier 19 June 2020 • 2:30 PM CEST • Paris

S otheby’s is pleased to announce its annual Oeuvres sur Papier sale, entirely devoted to works on paper. Led by a portrait of Dora Maar by Picasso, classical and astonishing the same time, the sale offers a selection of works from Eugène Delacroix and Victor Hugo to Sam Szafran. Among others, important works by Wifredo Lam, a collection of works by Modigliani coming from the Paul Alexandre Collection and works by Spilliaert coming from an important private Belgian Collection show how much works on paper are various reflections of the creative process.

Explore Highlights from the Auction

Explore the Works on Paper sale with our virtual exhibition:


Works in Focus

Pablo Picasso
pablo picasso | portrait de dora maar
Estimate 700,000 – 1,000,000 EUR
Pablo Picasso
This wonderful drawing by Pablo Picasso showcases his muse and lover Dora Maar dressed in an Andalusian-style attire. This portrait, dated 14 September 1936, was produced at the very beginning of the relationship between the painter and the photographer. The delicacy and tenderness emerging from this beautiful portrait reflects this growing passion. Dora Maar kept this drawing with her during the rest of her life, and it has not been on the market since it was acquired at her famous estate sale in Paris in 1998.

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Wifredo Lam
wifredo lam | sans titre
Estimate 260,000 – 360,000 EUR
Wifredo Lam
Executed in 1944 as Wilfredo Lam returned to Cuba, his homeland, this large work is particularly characteristic of a technique he develops at this period using subtle hints of color and contrasts with areas of the composition left in reserve. Filled with totemic animal figures recalling the Orishas from Cuban voodoo tradition, this magical drawing, characteristic of Lam’s art, allows the artist to create a singular poetic universe in which he combines his unique dream world with evocations of the surrounding tropical wilderness.

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Joan Miró
joan miró | tête
Estimate 250,000 – 350,000 EUR
Joan Miró
Paper became Miró's medium of choice in the last few decades of his life, allowing him an unprecedented inventiveness and expressiveness. Joan Miró's Têtes are striking in their pure energy and spectacular presence, plunging us directly into the painter's poetic universe. The pictorial vocabulary and the scale of the work reflect the influence of the new generation of American post-war painters, such as Jackson Pollock, whose work Miró had discovered during his second trip to New York in 1959.

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Marc Chagall
marc chagall | femme à la bougie ou ma grand-mère
Estimate 250,000 – 350,000 EUR
Marc Chagall
In this moving work dated 1927, part of the famous series of the memories from his home town of Vitebsk, Marc Chagall depicts his Russian grandmother. The Grand Mother image could also refer to the mythical figure of Baba Yaga which permeates Russian and Eastern European folklore.

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Henri Matisse
henri matisse | la lecture (recto - verso)
Estimate 150,000 – 200,000 EUR
Henri Matisse
Dating from the extraordinary surge of creativity that Matisse experienced in the late 1940s, La lecture, belongs to a series of drawings executed in 1947 as variations on the subject of two girls, often mother and daughter, at a table in an interior with a flower vase and bouquet on the right.

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Sam Szafran
sam szafran | l'atelier, rue du champ-de-mars
Estimate 50,000 – 70,000 EUR
Sam Szafran
In this drawing coming from the Louis-Dreyfus Collection, Sam Szafran explores the theme of the Artist’s Studio through charcoal. "I need chaos." he said. That dramatic frustration coming from always having to find a precarious place to use as a studio will nurture his obsessional inspiration translating into countless variations according to the volumes, the viewpoints, the shortcuts, the different hours of day and night.

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The Unique Style of Wifredo LamSotheby's Oeuvres sur Papier sale in Paris features a work by Wifredo Lam that is representative of his now signature style.
"Modigliani was ‘noblesse excédée’ to use Baudelaire’s phrase which fits him beautifully. I was instantly struck by his extraordinary talent and I wanted to do something for him"
Paul Alexandre

Four Drawings by Amedeo Modigliani from the Collection of his First Patron, Paul AlexandreSotheby’s is honoured to present at auction four remarkable drawings from the prestigious collection of Dr. Paul Alexandre in the upcoming Oeuvres sur Papier sale on 19 June in Paris.
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