PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF THE LATE ANTHONY QUINN
MASSIMO CAMPIGLI (1895-1971)
Signora signed and dated 'Campigli 56' (lower right) oil on canvas 22 1/4 x 18 9/16in. (56.5 x 47.2cm) Painted in 1956
PROVENANCE Zanini Gallery, Rome. La Barcaccia, Rome, circa 1959. Acquired from the above by the late owner circa 1959. By descent from the above to the present owner.
Nicola Campigli has kindly confirmed the authenticity of this painting.
Massimo Campigli's serene portrait, Signora, notes the artist's influence of classic art historical styles - pulling form and figuration alike from such motifs as Egyptian wall paintings to Etruscan fresco designs. In abandoning his practice with perspective, Campigli created his own iterations of two-dimensional flat female figures all of whom seem to float amongst nondescript backgrounds, highlighting the dynamism of their stare. His work invokes a longing for the simplicity of the archaic and ancient, where the figure holds significant meaning without context, drawing on a simpler and innate theme of human connection.
Alongside acting accolades and a successful film career, Anthony Quinn's passion for the arts guided him in his devout practice as a painter and sculptor, as well as shaped him to be an avid collector. Amassing a vast collection, from oil paintings and sculpture to traditional works from Africa and Asia, Quinn's eye primarily engaged with portraiture - seemingly connecting a natural story-teller (in Quinn) with works that brim with emotion, depth and pure engagement. From a dynamic and classically inspired Massimo Campigli portrait to an arabesque-like abstract bronze by Alexander Archipenko, this selection of the late Anthony Quinn's collection mirrors the eye of a true champion of the arts.
In 1957, Quinn won his second Supporting Actor award for his portrayal of Paul Gauguin in the film Lust for Life. The experience, according to those who knew him, transformed Quinn as he gained the respect of his peers. Additionally, it was a great commercial success.
At the insistence of Greta Garbo herself an esteemed paintings collector (see Sotheby's, New York, 15-18 November 1990), Quinn began with his first paintings acquisition in Los Angeles in the 1950s. This group of works represents well Quinn's vision as both an artist and his appreciation as a collector.