With an estimate of € 5.5 million, the work can become one of the most expensive works of Russian orbit artists sold at auction this year.
The name of the artist Nicolas de Stael in Europe is much more famous than in his homeland – in Russia, where for many years it remained undeservedly forgotten. He earned recognition during his lifetime and became one of the most famous artists in France. The style of Nicolas de Stael was greatly influenced by abstract artists. Over the 15 years of his creative life, Nicolas de Stael has created more than a thousand paintings, some of which are now valued at millions of dollars.
The landscape “Beach in Agrigento” refers to one of de Stael’s most important series, performed by the artist in southern France in 1953 and a year later presented at the New York Gallery by Paul Rosenberg, a contemporary art specialist in the United States.
Of the forty-four paintings by de Stael, created on the basis of impressions from travels in Sicily, twenty depict the famous beach of Agrigento. Six of them are kept in museum collections. The work presented at the auction is one of the best landscapes, reflecting the very essence of the entire series. Sand, sea, and the sky vibrate in it with almost sound intensity, striking the viewer with a real symphony of color and shape.
The Agrigento Beach landscape was featured in de Stael’s posthumous exhibitions, including retrospectives at the Boymans Van Beuningen Museum in Rotterdam in 1965, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York in 1966, as well as in Tobu Museum of Art in Tokyo in 1997, which speaks of its value and significance.
It is expected that the work will become the top lot of the Paris part of the auction Christie’s ONE: A Global Sale of the 20th Century. This is a real auction marathon, which will be held online in real time alternately from the four main offices of the auction house in Hong Kong, Paris, London, and New York on July 10, 2020.
From July 1 to July 21, 2020, Christie’s completes the traditional “Russian week” with Russian Art online auction. Its catalog includes more than 300 lots of fine and decorative art.