Arturo Nathan - The Great Wonderful: 100 Years of Italian Art New York Wednesday, May 13, 2015 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Jesi Collection, Milan
    Private Collection, Trieste

  • Literature

    Arturo Nathan: Illusione e Destino, exh. cat., Centro Saint-Benin, Aosta, 1992 (illustrated)
    E. Lucchese, Arturo Nathan, Fondazione CRT di Trieste, Trieste, 2009, no. 25 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    Arturo Nathan belongs to that group of artists who by dint of their creative or religious expression, or as in his case, both, suffered and perished as a direct result of the calamity of the Holocaust. His work prior was very much in sync with the mood of the times and was directly influenced by Giorgio de Chirico’s metaphysical explorations. However, Nathan’s works seem to embody and manifest a more tangible gravitas or pathos, almost as if foreshadowing his dramatic and tragic destiny. In his paintings, Nathan echoes Arnold Böcklin’s symbolism, but with a twist that shifts the focus towards a particular romanticism and classicism. Palude resembles the set of some Opera where the gigantic head appears to be more a theatre prop than an original archeological language. In this enigmatic painting, Nathan displaces the reaction of the viewer in his ambiguous depiction of this bizarre landscape. The viewer is left wondering if what is depicted is itself a direct representation of some new reality or, rather, some dramatic set in front of or upon which some performance is imminently approaching or recently concluded. The rarity of Nathan works imbues the present lot with an originality unknown to an audience more familiar with saccharine-sweet symbolism or too-cool metaphysics.



oil on board
25 5/8 x 35 3/8 in. (65 x 90 cm)
Signed and dated "A. Nathan 1937" at lower right; further titled "PALUDE" on the reverse of the board.

$100,000 - 150,000 

Contact Specialist
Brittany Lopez Slater
Head of International Exhibitions
New York
+1 212 940 1299

Carolina Lanfranchi
+39 338 924 1720

The Great Wonderful: 100 Years of Italian Art

New York 13 May 2015 4pm