Tête de Femme by Pablo Picasso is one of the major works in Bonhams
Prints and Multiples sale in London on Tuesday 24 November. This very rare lithograph is estimated at £20,000-30,000.
Only five impressions were made before the zinc plate was damaged, making it particularly sought after by collectors. Picasso executed the image in 1948 during his tempestuous relationship with Françoise Gilot with whom he had two children, Claude, born in 1947, and Paloma, born 1949. He was, by then, one of the most famous artists in the world.
Bonhams Head of Prints, Rupert Worrall, said, The image has a hypnotic, haunting quality and in its consciously restricted palette recalls the artists work from the Second World War which he spent under occupation in Paris. Although the woman of the title is not identified, the work does bear a strong resemblance to Picassos portraits of Françoise Gilot from the late 1940s.
Other works by Picasso in the sale include a signed artists proof of Buste de Femme from 1962 (£10,000-15,000) and Portrait de Vollard II (£4,000-6,000) from La Suite Vollard, the monumental work of 100 etchings which the artist produced between 1933 1937 to a commission from the art dealer, Ambrose Vollard.
The sale also offers a piece by a contemporary master Banksys Balloon Girl. Executed in 2004 in an edition of 150, of which this is number 94, the signed and dated print is estimated at £25,000-35,000.