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Christie's London announces annual sale dedicated to ceramics by Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso, Visage aux yeux rieurs (A.R. 608), stamped, marked and numbered 'Madoura Plein Feu/Edition Picasso/R.137/Edition Picasso/225/350' (underneath) partially glazed and engraved ceramic pitcher. Height: 13 in. (33.1 cm.). Conceived on 9 January 1969 and executed in a numbered edition of 350. Estimate £15,000 - 20,000. Photo: Christie's Images Ltd 2014.
LONDON.- Christie’s announced details of the annual sale dedicated to Picasso Ceramics on 26 June 2014, during Impressionist & Modern Art Week in London. This sale follows the success of the recent online sale of Impressions in Clay: Pablo Picasso Ceramics which was 100 per cent sold by lot and far exceeded its pre-sale estimate, and the 170 lot Picasso Ceramics sale of June 2013 which was also 100 per cent sold by lot. With estimates ranging from £200 to £60,000, the sale will include unique and editioned ceramics and will offer new collectors as well as seasoned buyers the opportunity to acquire sought-after pieces by one of the greatest artists of the 20th century. The full sale exhibition will be in South Kensington from 20-25 June 2014.

Keith Gill, Head of Sale, Picasso Ceramics, commented: “It is now over 60 years since Picasso first started to produce both unique and editioned ceramics at Madoura, and yet his ceramics are truly timeless and continue to appeal to collectors of all ages from all four corners of the world. The exhibition Picasso Ceramiste, held in Aubagne last Summer and in Sèvres since November last year, has brought Picasso’s ceramics to an even wider audience and created an even greater appreciation of this part of Picasso’s oeuvre amongst both collectors and academics. Our landmark Madoura sale in June 2012 brought Picasso’s ceramics to new international collectors and every sale sees the development of these collections and the beginning of many more. The sale includes some stunning unique pieces and rare editioned work. Only by seeing so many of these unique and editioned works together can we truly appreciate the breadth and diversity of Picasso’s creativity with ceramics.”

A highlight of the sale is the unique piece Hibou, where Picasso has used the basic shape of a terracotta floor tile or ‘tomette’ and decorated it very simply with black and white glaze to create a beautiful owl (estimate: £40,000-60,000). Created in 1957, this ceramic was part of Picasso’s estate when he died in 1973 and passed to Jacqueline Roque Picasso. It is a true rarity, showing Picasso at his inventive best. Picasso had a pet owl which lived with him and Francoise Gilot in Paris in the 1940s and 1950s, and the sale includes a number of wonderful editioned owl ceramics.

The sale also includes one of the rarest editioned ceramics, the large terracotta plaque Grande tête de femme au chapeau orné (estimate: £30,000-50,000). In 1964 Picasso created a series of seven plaques using a plaster matrix from earlier linocuts. Only two of the series of seven are on this pictorial scale, and each of these was only produced in an edition of 50. The edition is such a rarity that it has not been seen at auction since the Madoura sale. At 60 cm. high it is one of the largest editioned ceramics and undoubtedly also one of the most visually stunning.

The sale will also offer a number of gold medallions and silver plates that resulted from Picasso’s collaboration with François Hugo. In addition to a selection of eight playful and beautiful gold medallions from a private Japanese collection, the sale will also offer two large scale silver platters, particularly Vallauris, based upon the ceramic of the same name produced in 1956.





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