Pablo Picasso - 20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale - Morning Session New York Wednesday, November 15, 2017 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Galerie Louise Leiris, Paris
    Waddington Galleries, London
    Private Collection, Portugal (acquired from the above by the father of the owner in 2004)
    Thence by descent to the present owner

  • Exhibited

    Dusseldorf, Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen; Stuttgart Staatsgalerie, Picassos Welt der Kinder, September 9, 1995 - March 10, 1996, pl. 179, p. 255 (illustrated)
    London, Waddington Galleries, Picasso/Matisse Works on Paper, June 24 - July 19, 1997, no. 12, p. 53 (illustrated, n.p.)

  • Catalogue Essay

    A playful and inventive masterwork, Pablo Picasso’s La famille de Piero Crommelynck depicts the legendary master printmaker Piero Crommelynck with his wife and daughter, a family with which Picasso was close throughout the 1960s and until the artist’s death in 1973. Drawn with a sense of energetic virtuosity in graphite, the present lot demonstrates the talents of Picasso as an expert draughtsman. Articulated with subtly indicated facial expressions and the intimately interior space, with its built-up areas of decorative pattern, the drawing exhibits the brilliance of Picasso as both storyteller and portraitist.

    Picasso met Crommelynck in printmaker Roger Lacourière’s atelier while working on his Suite Vollard. Later, in the 1960s, the Crommelynck family moved to Mougins, close to Picasso’s villa Notre-Dame-de-Vie where he was living at this time. During these years, Crommelynck and his brother Aldo provided Picasso with the copper plates that he would use in his Trois cent quarante-sept gravures, La Célestine and the final Cent cinquante-six gravures graphic series. Crommelynck’s portrait can be found in a number of drawings and prints executed by Picasso during this time; however, the present lot is unique in its depiction of the master printer and his family. In La famille de Piero Crommelynck, he is depicted looking over at his wife and daughter, rendered with his characteristic goatee. His wife looks adoringly back at him, while his daughter maintains eye contact with the viewer via a simple smile. The gaze of Picasso’s subjects imbues the work with a sense of energy characteristic of the artist’s masterpieces on paper.

  • Artist Biography

    Pablo Picasso

    Spanish • 1881 - 1973

    One of the most dominant and influential artists of the 20th century, Pablo Picasso was a master of endless reinvention. While significantly contributing to the movements of Surrealism, Neoclassicism and Expressionism, he is best known for pioneering the groundbreaking movement of Cubism alongside fellow artist Georges Braque in the 1910s. In his practice, he drew on African and Iberian visual culture as well as the developments in the fast-changing world around him.

    Throughout his long and prolific career, the Spanish-born artist consistently pushed the boundaries of art to new extremes. Picasso's oeuvre is famously characterized by a radical diversity of styles, ranging from his early forays in Cubism to his Classical Period and his later more gestural expressionist work, and a diverse array of media including printmaking, drawing, ceramics and sculpture as well as theater sets and costumes designs. 

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La famille de Piero Crommelynck

dated "19.9.70" upper left
pencil on paper
19 7/8 x 12 7/8 in. (50.5 x 32.7 cm.)
Executed on September 19, 1970, this work is accompanied by a photo-certificate of authenticity signed by Claude Picasso.

$120,000 - 180,000 

Sold for $150,000

Contact Specialist
John McCord
Head of Day Sale, Morning Session
New York
+1 212 940 1261

20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale - Morning Session

New York Auction 15 November 2017