NEW YORK.- A newly discovered and previously unrecorded oil painting by the American Impressionist artist Frederick Carl Frieseke (1874-1939), is expected to fetch US$800,000-1,200,000 when it comes up for sale at Bonhams in New York on 28 November 2007. Specialists at Bonhams & Goodman found the painting Rose Garden, Giverny in an Australian private collection during a routine valuation.
The dreamy composition of ladies in long, white dresses, languishing in a flower garden, has since been authenticated by both Bonhams' US Director of Fine Arts Alan Fausel, who flew out to Australia to view the work, and the artist's grandson and editor of the Frederick C.Frieseke Catalogue Raisonné, Nicholas Kilmer.
Bonhams New York's Director of Fine Arts, Alan Fausel, says: "This is an incredibly exciting find for American art. The painting has not been recorded for a long time. We understand that it has been in Australia for over six decades and it is in pristine condition. It will be an exciting fresh work to offer on the American market."
A great admirer of Claude Monet, Frieseke moved to Giverny in 1906 where he painted at the art colony. While there he met Australian artists Emanuel Phillips Fox and Ambrose Patterson, who heavily influenced his work, including this particular example, to be sold by Bonhams.
Hugh Ramsay and Ambrose Patterson rented a studio in the same building as Frieseke at 51 Boulevard St Jacques, Montparnasse in Paris. George and Amy Lambert lived nearby, and the eclectic group of artists had "jolly musical soirees, drinking, eating, burning gum leaves and playing the piano in Ramsay and MacDonald's studio," according to art historian Patricia Fullerton who has included a photograph of Frieseke and Ramsay in her book Hugh Ramsay: His Life and Work (Melbourne 1988).
In 1910, Frieseke began to include outdoor subjects in his annual exhibitions at the Société Nationale des Beaux-Art in Paris, with whom he first exhibited in 1899 and it is thought that Rose Garden, Giverny was painted no later than the summer of 1911.
In January 1912, Frieseke held his first solo exhibition at the Macbeth Gallery in New York, which included a number of similar compositions featuring female figures in outdoor scenes and Alan Fausel goes as far as saying: "There is a strong possibility that there is a match between this painting, whose title has not been preserved, and the title, Roses and Pansies - one of the lost garden paintings that was included in the 1912 Macbeth Gallery exhibition - of which no image has been discovered."
The oil painting measures 32 x 32 inches and is expected to fetch US$800,000- 1,200,000.