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    Sale 2168

    Post War and Contemporary Art Morning Session

    14 May 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 165

    Willem de Kooning (1904-1997)

    Figure in Water

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    Willem de Kooning (1904-1997)
    Figure in Water
    signed 'de Kooning' (lower right)
    oil on paper laid down on canvas
    23 x 18¼ in. (58.4 x 46.3 cm.)
    Painted in 1967.


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    Contact the department

    "I'm working on a water series. The figures are floating, like reflections in the water. The color is influenced by the natural lightI try to free myself from the notion of top and bottom, left and right, from realism! Everything should float...When I go down to the water's edge on my daily bicycle ride I see the clam diggers bending over, up to their ankles in the surf, their shadows quite unreal, as if floating. This is what gave me the ideaThe whole secret is to free yourself from gravity!"
    (Willem de Kooning as quoted in Willem de Kooning: Paintings, exh. cat., Washington, National Gallery of Art, 1994, p. 174)

    Provenance

    Elaine de Kooning (gift from the artist) Private collection, acquired by descent from the above
    Diane Upright Fine Arts, LLC, New York
    Acquired from the above by the present owner


    Saleroom Notice

    The correct provenance for this lot is as follows:

    Elaine de Kooning (gift from the artist)
    Private collection, acquired by descent from the above
    Diane Upright Fine Arts, LLC, New York
    Acquired from the above by the present owner


    Literature

    G. Drudi, Willem de Kooning, Milan, 1972, no. 145 (illustrated in color).
    H. Rosenberg, Willem de Kooning, New York, 1973, pl. 175 (illustrated in color).


    Exhibited

    New York, Knoedler & Co., De Kooning Recent Paintings and Drawings Since 1963, November-December 1967, p. 54 (illustrated).