Emile François Chambon (Swiss, 1905-1993) La clef des songes (Painted in 1982)

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 36* AR
Emile François Chambon
(Swiss, 1905-1993)
La clef des songes

Sold for £ 23,750 (US$ 29,908) inc. premium
Emile François Chambon (1905-1993)
La clef des songes
signed and dated 'E. CHAMBON 1982' (lower left)
oil on card laid on panel
80.5 x 110cm (31 11/16 x 43 5/16in).
Painted in 1982

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    The artist's studio.
    Fondation Chambon Collection, Geneva.

    Exhibited
    Paris, Galerie Marcel Bernheim, October 1992.
    Payerne, Musée de l'Abbatiale, Félix Vallotton – Emile Chambon, 17 January - 8 March 1998, no. 50.
    Carouge, Musée de Carouge, Exposition du centenaire de la naissance d'Emile Chambon (1905-2005), 28 November - 29 January 2005.

    Literature
    J. M. Marquis, Emile Chambon: du classicisme au surréalisme poétique, Geneva, 1984 (illustrated p. 82).
    P. Clerc, Emile Chambon, la magie du réalisme, Geneva, 2011, fig. 157 (illustrated p. 152).

    During the 1980s Emile François Chambon partially abandoned painting and dedicated the majority of his time to the execution of drawings and sketches. Aside from producing about twenty pochades (painted sketches) depicting scenes of mythology or scenes de genre, the artist executed just a few large, ambitious works of which La clef des songes is one.

    The present work depicts one of the artist's favourite models, Maris-Claire C., clutching the eponymous key of daydreams in a pose of ecstasy while two black cats quietly look on. The subject of the key or keyhole was a recurrent motif in Chambon's oeuvre, representing both dreams and voyeurism. In the present work these themes are immediately detected despite Chambon conveying the presence of a voyeur in a less literal way. Here the woman is pictured alone with the cats, when normally Chambon would present himself as the onlooker hidden in the shadows.

    In La clef des songes, Chambon presents a strikingly Surrealist scene through a skilful structuring of the composition, whereby the female subject appears to be both the protagonist of a play in which green theatre curtains frame the tableau, and a solitary individual at the side of her bedroom window enjoying a private daydream under the cover of darkness. In both respects we, the viewer, are implicated within the scene as either a welcome member of an audience or as an unobserved voyeur intruding on an intimate moment. This ambiguity within the composition and the surreal nature of the scene, with the two black cats eerily poised under the light of the moon, creates a captivating and thought provoking painting.
Contacts
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, 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, buyer's premium excluding Cars, Motorbikes, Wine and Coin & Medal sales, will be as follows:

Buyer's Premium Rates
27.5% on the first £2,500 of the hammer price;
25% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £2,500 up to and including £300,000;
20% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £300,000 up to and including £3,000,000;
and 13.9% of the hammer price of any amounts in excess of £3,000,000.

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

Payment Notices

For payment information please refer to the sale catalog.

Shipping Notices

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

Lot symbols
* Import low rate

VAT on imported items at a preferential rate of 5% on Hammer Price and the prevailing rate on Buyer's Premium.

AR Artists Resale Right

Goods subject to Artists Resale Right Additional Premium.