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Exceptional works by leading masters of 19th Century European art at Sotheby's New York
Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Les Gaulois. Oil on canvas, 42 7/8 by 51 1/8 in.; 108.9 by 129.8 cm. Est. $800,000/1,200,000. Photo: Sotheby's.
NEW YORK, NY.- Sotheby’s sale of 19th Century European Art on 8 November 2013 will feature exceptional works by the leading 19th century masters. Headlining the sale is La coiffure by Federico Zandomeneghi, from an American private collection (est. $2/3 million). The artist often portrayed women and girls observed in the private moments of their everyday life: reading letters, sewing, chatting, or as in the present work, attending to their coiffure. Zandò, as he became known by his fellow French artists, drew the attention of the powerful dealer Paul Durand-Ruel who sponsored three one-man shows for the artist in 1893, 1897, and 1903 in addition to his inclusion in the fourth, fifth, sixth and eighth Impressionist exhibitions.

A further highlight of the sale is Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot’s Les Gaulois, which refers to the figures in the painting who are easily identifiable as Gaul soldiers of the warrior-tribes who inhabited France during Roman times (est. $800/1.2 million). Les Gaulois has very important and well-known provenance, having been previously owned by J.P. Morgan, Matilda Dodge Wilson (married to John Francis Dodge, founder of the Dodge automobile company) and Arthur Murray, who established the dance studios that still bear his name. It is consigned to the sale by Dr. Henry Heimlich, the inventor of the Heimlich Maneuver.

An important painting by Joaquín Sorolla, Buscando mariscos, Playa de Valencia, comes to market at a time when demand for the Spanish master’s work is at a high (est. $1/1.5 million). Elegantly lyrical this work has been requested for the Spanish venue of a comprehensive exhibition of Sorolla’s work, “Sorolla and America,” which will open at the Meadows Museum in Dallas this December. Separate release available upon request.

Like many artists of the period, William Bouguereau found inspiration in Greco-Roman mythology, as shown in Blessures d’amour (est. $1/1.5 million). Soon after this work was exhibited at the Paris Salon of 1897, it was sold to Ferdinand William Roebling (1842 – 1917), a New Jersey industrial magnate.

Frederik Hendrik Kaemmerer’s Beach at Scheveningen, Holland is a tour-de-force and one of the visual touchstones of the Belle Époque (est. $600/800,000). Painted in 1874, it was exhibited at the Paris Salon the same year, where the artist was awarded a médaille de troisième classe. Many of the most acclaimed and medal-winning Salon paintings of the period were purchased by wealthy American collectors and institutions. Beach at Scheveningen, Holland, too, was swiftly acquired by the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, DC in 1875, where it remained until 1988, when it was sold for $1,320,000 at Sotheby’s New York. Separate release available upon request.

Known only through an etching published by Arthur Tooth and Sons, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema’s The Benediction has not been exhibited publicly or reproduced in print in over 100 years (est. $400/600,000). Painted in May 1894, The Benediction left Alma-Tadema’s studio only two months before the completion of Spring, now in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum where it is among the museum’s most popular works. The present lot was purchased in 1895 by William S. Kimball, an American businessman and has remained in his family ever since.

The first of Frederick Arthur Bridgman’s paintings to enter a public collection in America, and the last major historical genre painting he would create for nearly a decade, The Procession of the Bull Apis is regarded as one of the artist’s most important early works (est. $400/600,000). The artist’s archaeological precision and exotic subject matter, inspired by numerous trips to Egypt and North Africa and a profound devotion to scholarly research, immediately compelled comparisons to the Orientalist paintings of Jean-Léon Gérôme (1824 – 1904), Bridgman’s teacher and mentor in Paris in the 1860s, and an artist who is well represented by three diverse and important works in this auction.



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