Giorgio De Chirico Leads Impressionist And Modern Art Sale At Bonhams

Impressionist and Modern Art
6 May 2014
New York

New York – Bonhams, the third largest international fine art auction house, is pleased to announce that its sale of Impressionist and Modern Art brought more than $3.2 million with an 89 percent sold-by-value rate on May 6 in New York. Collectors and their agents from 29 countries competed at the sale, with significant activity from participants in the Far East and Central America.

Leading the auction was "Ettore e Andromaca," an oil on canvas by Giorgio De Chirico which was pursued to $461,000 by a private European collector in the face of international competition. The painting, formerly in the collection of the New York real estate developer Edward R. Lewis, presents De Chirico's trademark mannequin figures pinioned in a vast piazza, representing the disorienting atmosphere of Europe in the early 20th century, lost and navigating the dehumanising currents of the modern world. Prior to the auction, the painting had not been seen since the late 1950s.

The sale also featured masterpieces by Mexican artists, such as Diego Rivera's "El Amigo de Frida," a portrait of a friend of the painter's wife Frida Kahlo, which achieved $281,000. Also notable was Alfredo Ramos Martinez's beautiful "Mujer con frutas," in tempera and India ink on coloured canvas board, that brought $185,000.

A Henry Moore bronze sculpture "Maquette for Curved Mother and Child" also sold well in the sale at $227,000, exceeding it's a high estimate of $200,000. The sculpture came from the collection of Stephen Bogart, and was formerly in the collection of his mother Lauren Bacall. Ms Bacall was a close friend of the sculptor and a passionate enthusiast for his work. The bronze is a striking record of their relationship as artist and collector.

Further highlights included Franz Marc's jewel-like watercolour "Pferd und Rind," which brought $245,000. The 1913 goauche was consigned from the collection of noted collectors and MOMA benefactors Matthew and Erna Futter.

Also of note, Gino Severini's futurist masterpiece "Train de Blessés" brought $209,000, sold to benefit a New York foundation. The extremely rare drawing from a pivotal moment in art was unseen for more than 50 years and reappeared to coincide with the Futurist retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC.

Tanya Wells, Director, Head of Sale, for Impressionist and Modern Art at Bonhams, commented of the sale, "The strong result of the sale was due to the breadth and variety of the modern masterworks on offer, particularly the notable group of works on paper by major European artists. The sale was sourced almost entirely from established private collections, with works fresh to the market generating strong results. These results are a testament to the enthusiasm, dedication and knowledge of the current generation of collectors, in the Americas, Europe and Asia, for significant works from the early 20th century."

To view more results from the sale, please visit

For further information and images call Joalien Johnson at 415-503-3348, or email


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to

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