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Old Master paintings at Sotheby's led by a previously unpublished picture by Pieter Brueghel the Younger
Pieter Brueghel the Younger, Spring, oil on panel, 16 1/2 by 22 1/2 in.; 41.9 by 57.2 cm. Est. $700/900,000. Photo: Sotheby's.
NEW YORK, NY.- The 6 June 2013 sale of Old Master Paintings in New York will feature works from a range of schools throughout Europe from Early Northern and Italian paintings to masterpieces from the 18th century. Among the highlights of the sale is a group of works consigned from a West Coast Estate, led by a previously unpublished picture by Pieter Brueghel the Younger, Spring (est. $700/900,000). A number of versions of this subject by the artist are recorded, however, this appears to be one of the finest to reemerge onto the market in years. A further highlight from the same collection is a rare composition, also by Pieter Brueghel the Younger, The Whitsun Bride (est. $400/600,000). This is an original composition by the artist, and depicts the Flemish celebration of Whitsuntide, which took place the week following Pentecost, also known as Whitsunday, and commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Christ’s disciples. A group of four paintings by Sebastian Vrancx, datable to circa 1618, is entitled Allegories of the seasons (est. $300/500,000). Allegorical pictures of this type were very popular in Flemish painting in the late 16th and 17th century. The works from this West Coast Estate were assembled during the 1970s and 1980s and have remained in private hands since then.

The cover lot of the sale is Michel Garnier’s Young girl listening to a conversation between two lovers (est. $100/150,000) from a Connecticut Private Collection, painted at the end of the artist’s life. Garnier’s elegant, yet highly refined and crisp handling of paint was particularly well-suited for the depiction of fashionable and ornately dressed Parisians. This collection encompasses French 18th century works from all different media including oil paintings, pastels and gouaches and was assembled in the 1980s to 1990s with a connoisseur’s eye. Another picture from the same private collection is “Ils sont d’accord” also by Garnier (est. $100/150,000).

A further highlight in the sale is a recently discovered Flemish work by Jan Massys, A praying monk (est. $100/150,000), which shows a dialogue between two generations of artists. The present panel is a variant of a lost original by Massys’ father, Quentin, who trained Jan. Also included in the sale is ‘Les Baisers Maternels’ or ‘Les Jalousies de l’Enfance’ by Jean-Honoré Fragonard (est. $300/400,000). This exquisite oil captures the tenderness of a young mother torn between the attentions of her two children.

The sale will also feature works from important American museums including The Art Institute of Chicago, the High Museum of Art and Minneapolis Institute of Arts. The exhibition will open to the public in our York Avenue galleries on 1 June 2013.

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