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Sale: 393 / Post War/Contemporary Art, June 09. 2012 in Munich Lot 209

Serge Poliakoff - Composition abstraite orange, jaune, vert, lie de vin

Lot description
Composition abstraite orange, jaune, vert, lie de vin. 1964.
Oil on canvas.
Signed and dated lower right. With label on stretcher, there dated "1964" presumably by a hand other than that of the artist, titled "5 Composition abstraite rouge jaune vert lie de vin" and inscribed "100 F". 130 x 162 cm (51,1 x 63,7 in).
The large compositions from the 1960s belong to the artist's most sought-after works on the international auction market.

The work is registered in the Poliakoff-Archive under the number 964103. It will be included into the forthcoming catalog raisonné of paintings (vol. IV) under the number 64-1. We are grateful to Alexis and Thaddée Poliakoff, Paris, for their kind expert advice.

PROVENANCE: Sotheby's London, 30 November 1989, lot 659, with illu. in colors p. 109.
Private collection Southern Germany.

EXHIBITION: Serge Poliakoff, Galerie de France, Galerie de France, Paris 6 November, 1964 - 3 January, 1965.
Poliakoff. 44 oil paintings, 15 gouaches, Galerie Im Erker, St.Gallen, 24 April - 19 June, 1965, cat. no. 32 (with label on stretcher).
12e Salon de Mai, Musée National d’Art Moderne, Paris 03 May - 23 May, 1965, cat. no. 150.
Serge Poliakoff, Galerie Räber, Lucerne, 15 August - 15 October, 1965, cat. no. 24.
Serge Poliakoff, Galerie d'art moderne, Marie-Suzanne Feigel, Basle 20 January - 28 February, 1965, cat. no. 23 (with label on stretcher).
Rosc’67, National Museum of Irland, Dublin 14 November - 31 December, 1967, cat. no. 98, with illu. p. 88 (with label on stretcher).
Französisch Malerei der Gegenwart, Kunstverein Berlin, Berlin 14 October - 6 November, 1967, cat. no. 78.
Serge Poliakoff, Galleria Editalia, Rome 26 December - 30 November, 1973, cat. no. 5, with illu. in colors (with label on stretcher).
Galerie Daniel Malingue, Paris (with label on stretcher).
Waddington Galleries Ltd, London (with label on stretcher).
Galerie D'Art Colisée, Paris, no. 1015 (with label on stretcher).

The Russian painter Serge Poliakoff, born in Moscow on 8 January 1900, is one of the most important members of the Ecole de Paris. He fled the Russian Revolution in 1917, first going to Constantinople and then to Paris in 1923, where he spent most years of his life. He began studying painting while earning a living as a musician. He enrolled at the Académie Forchot and Académie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris 1929 and went to London in 1935 where he studied at the Slade School of Art. At first he produced variations of academic traditions and predominantly figurative motifs such as nudes, houses, trees etc. After 1935 Poliakoff increasingly turned towards abstract art, employing color as color without any figurative context. A decisive influence in this direction was Kandinsky, whom he met after his return to Paris. Sonia and Robert Delaunay taught him to appreciate the emotive quality of color and awakened an interest in simultaneous contrasts. Another important source of Poliakoff's pictorial language was the sculptor Otto Freundlich with his curved color-form compositions. Poliakoff developed a very individual form of abstract painting, arranging different colored fields of color next to one another. Shades of brown and gray were his preferred colors during the 1940s, while after the 1950s he extended his palette including bright contrasting tones. In his late work Poliakoff abandoned the polychrome palette and returned to earth tones and more monochrome works. Poliakoff's paintings were shown at international exhibitions during the 1950s and 1960s, after his nationalization in France in 1962 the artist received his own room at the Biennale in Venice.

Space, proportions and rhythm are the most important elements of Serge Poliakoff’s art. Contours between the color fields are always slightly bowed, accordingly the forms are subject to imperceptible vibration. Through subtly graded shades, an increasing density of forms towards the center and tension between the color fields make for the composition’s harmony and the paintings optical resonance.
Our painting was first shown at the ROSC in Dublin in 1967 and was presented in numerous exhibition afterwards, as it is a prime example of the color field’s unique meditative effect and Poliakoff’s characteristic lively compositions.

Over the later years a number of lithographs, to which Poliakoff attended since 1962, as well as small format paintings were created, when the artist had to take care of himself after a heart attack in 1965. Serge Poliakoff died in Paris on 12 October 1969. In 1970 the first posthumous solo show took place in the Musé National d'Art Moderne, Paris. In 2007 the artist was honored in a comprehensive retrospective in Kunsthalle Emden and the Hypo-Kunsthalle in Munich. His works are in possession of numerous art collections, for instance the Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich. [EH].

Serge Poliakoff
Composition abstraite orange, jaune, vert, lie de vin, 1964.
Oil on canvas
€ 250,000 / $ 300,000
€ 524,600 / $ 629.520

(incl. 22% surcharge)

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