The Collection Jacqueline Matisse Monnier achieves $44,1M at Christie's

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The Collection Jacqueline Matisse Monnier achieves $44,1M at Christie's
Cécile Verdier, President of Christie’s France, selling Henri Matisse, Nymphe et faune rouge, 1939. Price realised: €5,185,500, against an estimate of €1,800,000–2,200,000. Top lot of the sale. © Christie's Images Ltd 2022.

PARIS.- On 13 April 2022, the Collection Jacqueline Matisse Monnier auction realised a total of €40,488,048 / £33,613,996 / $44,053,020, almost 3 times the presale estimate and selling 96% by value and 94% by lot. The collection, illustrating a lifetime spent amongst some of the world’s leading artistic figures, attracted bidders from all over the world (registered bidders from 21 countries). This sale achieved a new auction record for a silkscreen by Henri Matisse as well a new auction record in France for Yves Klein. Among this exceptional collection, thirteen lots were sold above 1 million euros.

Jacqueline “Jackie” Matisse, daughter of the prominent art dealer Pierre Matisse and Alexina Teeny Matisse-Duchamp, granddaughter of Henri Matisse and stepdaughter of Marcel Duchamp, evolved in a remarkable milieu of creative thought and innovation. This collection, comprising rare pieces largely created by friends of the Matisse family, reflects their intimate relationships with some of the greatest artists of the 20th century.

Henri Matisse’s work was naturally celebrated in this sale and attracted a lot of interest : the ensemble of pieces by the artist achieved €13,753,590. The top lot of the auction was Nymphe et faune rouge, a colorful oil and crayon on canvas by Henri Matisse, which achieved €5,185,500, almost three times its estimate. The opening lot of this auction, a delicate portrait on paper of Jackie by her grandfather, sold for €214,200, more than five times its pre-sale estimate. As for the majestic pair of silkscreens on linen Océanie, le Ciel and Océanie, la Mer, which were very dear to the artist, they respectively realised €4,002,000 and €2,082,000 – the first achieving a new world auction record for a silkscreen by Henri Matisse.

Another record was set with IKB 183 by Yves Klein, an iconic blue monochrome, which realised €2,922,000, almost three times its estimate and became the highest price achieved for the artist at auction in France.

Further highlights of the sale include several pieces originating from Pierre Matisse’s personal collection such as the rare painted bronze Petit buste d’homme by Alberto Giacometti, which sold for €3,042,000 as well as Porte-manteau au Hibou, by his brother Diego Giacometti, sold for €2,202,000; Finissez ce que j’ai commencé painted by Yves Tanguy in 1927, which realised €1,692,000; Etude by Simon Hantaï, a delicate oil on canvas which achieved €1,362,000; and L’Homme et l’Oiseau by Joan Miró, Jackie’s godfather, which sold for €1,602,000.

Jacqueline Matisse Monnier’s close friends were also represented in the sale with unique works by Niki de Saint-Phalle, Jean Tinguely or François-Xavier Lalanne. The first version of the three iconic Hippopotame resin bathtubs created by Lalanne, originating from Teeny Matisse-Duchamp’s collection, Jacqueline’s mother, was sold for €1,092,000. Teeny’s husband, Marcel Duchamp, who played a crucial role in Jacqueline’s creative trajectory, was also present in the sale. His emblematic Mona Lisa with mustaches, L.H.O.O.Q., part of the book Propos et souvenirs edited by Pierre de Massot, achieved €1,002,000. Last but not least, their Boîte-en-Valise F séries, assembled by Jacqueline in her small apartement-atelier in the rue du Bac, sold for €315,000, more than twice its estimate.

Jonathan Rendell, Deputy Chairman, Christie's Americas: “It was such a privilege to present Jacqueline Matisse Monnier extraordinary collection and to share this touching story with the world. The results achieved today are a testimony of the impeccable provenance of this ensemble and crystallize the true achievement in connoisseurship in Jackie’s collection. We are infinitely grateful to the Matisse Monnier’s for entrusting us with this incredible collection, allowing us to pay tribute to Jackie and to some of the most prominent artists of the 20th Century.”

Flavien Gaillard and Antoine Lebouteiller, Heads of Sale : “The outstanding success of Jacqueline Matisse Monnier’s collection confirms the pristine quality of the ensemble. With thirteen lots sold above the 1 million mark, this auction gathered bidders from 21 countries and illustrated the strong appetite of the market for exceptional curated collections and great provenances. We were honored to present such a landmark collection celebrating three generations of friendships with artists, after a very successful public exhibition in our Paris’ galleries.”

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