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    Sale 7704

    Post-War & Contemporary Art Evening Sale

    11 February 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 12

    Jenny Saville (b. 1970)


    Price Realised  


    Jenny Saville (b. 1970)
    signed and dated 'Saville '94' (on the reverse)
    oil on canvas
    120 x 66in. (304.8 x 167.6cm.)
    Painted in 1994

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    At over three metres tall Jenny Saville's Juncture provides a daunting encounter with the landscape of the human body. Painted in 1994, the year Saville was rapidly propelled to fame as one of Britain's leading young artists, this cramped and cropped image of a female head and torso is filled with flesh, its monumental scale provoking an intense, all-exclusive relationship between painting and viewer. This compositional device is a deliberate decision on Saville's part, whose treatment of large nudes challenge powerful underlying expectations about both art and the body.

    "Its the effect of intimacy through scale that I want," she has stated. "Although large paintings are so often associated with grandeur, I want to make large paintings that are very intimate. I want the painting to almost surround your body when you stand very close to it. Rothko creates an intimacy through scale. When you stand very close to his paintings the colour hums and vibrates through you it - almost wraps around you. It's a childlike feeling... I want the feeling that you don't only command the piece of work, the piece of work also commands you" (Saville quoted in M. Gayford, "A Conversation with Jenny Saville", in Jenny Saville Territories, exh. cat., New York, 1999, p. 31).

    Saville's work is perhaps most often compared to Lucian Freud's rigorous studies of the human body, and while at first glance a certain artistic similarity may indeed be discerned, there is a broad conceptual gap separating the two artists. Saville takes on Lucian Freud's politic of the gaze, yet her own celebration of form and flesh confronts our worst anxieties about corporality and gender. The robust physicality of Saville's sensuous, painterly practice is coupled with her awareness of identity politics, and of feminist art in the tradition of Cindy Sherman, Barbara Kruger and Kiki Smith. Conceptually driven, and based in the world of photography, this massive painting of a massive body reclaims the female figure from the male-orientated artistic tradition, transforming an unflinching representation of the blotched and blemished flesh of a real woman into something enigmatically beautiful and sumptuous.

    Special Notice

    From time to time, Christie's may offer a lot which it owns in whole or in part. This is such a lot.
    Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.
    VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium


    Mr. and Mrs. Robert D. Summer, New York.
    C&M Arts, New York.
    Private Collection, Dallas.

    Saleroom Notice

    Please note that the last line of provenance should read:
    Private Collection, Dallas.

    Please note that this work was also included in the following exhibition:

    London, National Portrait Gallery, Self-Portrait: Renaissance to Contemporary, October 2005-January 2006. This exhibition later travelled to New South Wales, The New South Wales Art Gallery, February-May 2006.


    Jenny Saville: Territories, exh. cat., New York, Gagosian Gallery, 1999, no. 47 (illustrated in colour, unpaged).
    J. Gray, L. Nochlin, D. Sylvester and S. Schama, Jenny Saville, New York 2005 (illustrated in colour, p. 33).
    Jenny Saville, exh. cat., Rome, MACRO, Museo d'Arte Contemporanea, 2005 (illustrated in colour, p. 23).


    Glasgow, McLellan Galleries, An American Passion: The Susan Kasen Summer and Robert D. Summer Collection of Contemporary British Painting, December 1994-December 1995. This exhibition later travelled to London, Royal College of Art and New Haven, Yale Center for British Art.
    New Haven, Yale Center for British Art, Great British Paintings from American Collections: Holbein to Hockney, September 2001-May 2002 (illustrated in colour, pp. 258-259). This exhibition later travelled to San Marino, California, Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens.
    London, National Portrait Gallery, Self-Portrait: Renaissance to Contemporary, October 2005-January 2006. This exhibition later travelled to New South Wales, The New South Wales Art Gallery, February-May 2006.