ENCHANTMENTS ACROSS THE AGES
– RUSSIAN ART AUCTION –
4 JUNE 2018, LONDON
On 4th June, Christie’s Russian Art sale will offer a selection of works by numerous highly sought-after artists including Boris Grigoriev, Alexandre Iacovleff, Konstantin Somov, Nicholas Roerich, Dmitry Stelletsky and Yuri Annenkov. Session II will offer Russian Works of Art, including over forty works from the famous workshop of Fabergé, Imperial jewels, rare bronzes, Soviet Porcelain and works by the Imperial Porcelain Factory.
A highlight of the sale, Boris Grigoriev’s La Mère Agathe is one of the finest and most characteristic of Grigoriev’s Breton cycle paintings of the 1920s, which was exhibited at several major exhibitions including at the artist’s solo show in the New Gallery in New York (5th December 1924 – 2nd January 1925). As evident in the above painting, Grigoriev took care to capture his sitters and this work successfully conveys a strong sense of character in the elderly Breton woman (illustrated above, estimate: £250,000 – 350,000). Brittany, with its archaic cultural context, the crystalline clarity of medieval architectural forms, and the colourful richness of summer landscapes, provided Grigoriev with novel artistic materials, subjects, textures, and colours. Showcasing the painting at the 24th Annual International Exhibition in Pittsburgh in 1925 and subsequently at Grand Central Art Galleries in New York in 1926 cemented its success and attracted the attention of an illustrious collector called Edgar J. Kaufmann (1885-1955).