S otheby’s is honored to present the Collection of Paul Yeou Chichong across our Modern Evening Sale, Modern Day Auction, Old Master Paintings Sales and in other select sales throughout the year. Amassed over decades and across continents, the collection of Paul Yeou Chichong is an encyclopedic grouping of the art historical canon amassed through diligence and a love of art by a true connoisseur. The collection, until now, has been housed in Tahiti for decades, a location at once unusual yet fitting considering the core grouping of works by Paul Gauguin, an artist intricately linked with the island. We are thrilled to bring these works of art to Sotheby’s selling locations across the globe in order to highlight the international origins of the collection.
M Chichong assembled works spanning centuries of art history, a testament to his careful selections of excellent examples from the Old Masters, the Impressionists, the Post-Impressionists and beyond.
By Land and By Sea: The Collection of Paul Yeou Chichong
Paul Yeou Chichong
Monsieur Chichong’s interest in art sprang from him studies in France as a young man, when he traveled from French Polynesia, at first by boat and eventually by plane, beginning in 1952 and until he graduated from the École des hautes études commerciales de Paris— the first student of French Polynesian origin to do so. He decided to dedicate himself to his native Tahiti and through various business enterprises and companies became business leader as well as a civic leader and philanthropist.
Modern Evening Sale
New York, Tuesday, 17 May 2022
Led by Gauguin’s enchanting Tahitian idyll from the artist’s first trip to the Polynesian island, Tahiti, scène de rivière, the masterworks offered in the Modern Evening Auction capture the ephemerality of the Impressionist and Post-Impressionist eras and carry the viewer into the Modern age with works from the twentieth century’s greatest painters.
Anchored by an exquisite winter landscape by Monet and joined by the daring pointillist canvases of Signac and Cross, this collection shows a profound appreciation of the artistic innovations which forever altered the course of painting around the turn of the century. Where one generation left off, a new group of pioneering artists took up their mantle. Buoyed by the stylistic advancements made by their predecessors, Surrealists like Magritte and Delvaux questioned the nature of reality in fantastical compositions like Le Monde poétique and La Fin du Voyage.
Picasso too would challenge the natural order in the 1930s with Cubist-inspired still lifes Nature morte. Poissons et poêle which capture his beloved surroundings from myriad vantage points. With their lyrical interpretations of form, both Matisse and Miró would achieve a balance of abstraction and figuration that distilled the essence of artistic advancement in the Modern age. Taken together, the impressive selection and breadth of M Chichong’s collection reveals a true connoisseurial eye and abiding passion for the craft.
Modern Art Day Sale
New York, Wednesday, 18 May 2022
The selection to be offered in the Modern Art Day Sale in New York in May reflects the standout examples of Impressionism, Post-Impressionism and Fauvism in the collection. A highlight of the sale is a vibrant landscape by Camille Pissarro, Les Bords de l’Epte à Éragny, from 1884 which depicts the artist’s surroundings in the small village in northern France where he lived from 1884 until his death.
A grouping of paintings by Pierre-Auguste Renoir span the artist’s career, from the ethereal landscape of Pont-Aven painted in 1892 to the dreamy portrait of a woman, thought to be Gabrielle, from circa 1910.
A key theme in the collection is one of fish— something that the collector astutely notes is something every artist has depicted, from Renoir to Picasso to Haring. This theme is also a reflection of the French Polynesian environment, where living off and with the ocean is a key part of the way of life. The Day sale grouping includes two beautiful still lives by Impressionists Gustave Caillebotte and Pierre-Auguste Renoir, as well as a Cubist depiction of a flounder and iconic vase by Georges Braque.
Master Paintings Part I sale
New York, Thursday, 25 May 2022
In addition to his remarkable collection of Impressionist and Modern Art, M Chichong built a refined collection of Old Master Paintings with a focus on Dutch and Flemish artists. Four highlights from the collection will be offered in our upcoming midseason sale on 25 May. The most significant is a winter landscape by Pieter Brueghel the Younger that combines naturalism and humorous genre elements, based on famous examples by his father, accompanied by a kermesse scene by Jacob Savery I, and two stunning still lifes: a banketje by Willem Claesz. Heda, master of the monochrome banquet still life in Haarlem, and a bouquet of flowers in a niche by Johannes Bosschaert in the Middelburg floral still life tradition.