Michael Ayrton (British, 1921-1975) Elysian Self-portrait (Midday) 25.5 x 35.5 cm. (10 x 14 in.)
Lot 55
Michael Ayrton (British, 1921-1975) Elysian Self-portrait (Midday) 25.5 x 35.5 cm. (10 x 14 in.)
Sold for £13,200 (US$ 20,655) inc. premium

Lot Details
Michael Ayrton (British, 1921-1975)
Elysian Self-portrait (Midday)
signed and dated 'Michael Ayrton 49' (upper left)
oil on panel
25.5 x 35.5 cm. (10 x 14 in.)

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE:
    With The Hanover Gallery, London, where purchased by the father of the present owner
    Thence by descent

    Michael Ayrton never personally rated himself as a painter and far preferred the medium of sculpture. As a result, in his pictures the figures sometimes seem to appear 'in the round' and have tangible weight – in short he often painted like a sculptor. The figure in the present lot luxuriates in the shade on a hot day and the solidity of the reposed body is felt.

    During the 1940s and 50s, Ayrton visited Italy and Greece, with the latter having a particular affect on him. The mythology fascinated him and he began to incorporate elements of this mystery into his work. This is evident in the present example, where the title refers to Elysium, as in 'Elysian Fields' – supposedly the final resting place of the souls of the heroic and the virtuous. Painted whilst he was on one of his visits to Greece (Ischia), this title may signify that he had reached a point (and place) of contentment in his life. It is a peaceful work showing the artist at rest in a place he loved. Cats are a recurring motif in his oeuvre and perhaps the sleeping cat depicted here goes further to convey a sense of relaxation.

    Beautifully rendered and imbued with a certain surrealism, this bijoux picture bears testament to the fact that despite the artists own protestations, he could in fact paint. And very well.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note that Ischia is an Italian island, not Greek as mentioned in the catalogue entry.
Auction information

This sale is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future sales, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this sale, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Similar Items