The tradition of giving:
Chaïm Soutine’s Nature morte aux poissons (c. 1921)

Chaïm Soutine’s oil on canvas Nature morte aux poissons (c. 1921) will be offered as part of the Impressionist and Modern Art Online Sale from 1‒15 July 2020. This work speaks to Soutine’s masterful animation of otherwise inanimate objects. With the renowned American collector Albert C. Barnes as his benefactor, Soutine travelled south in the early 1920's to sojourn in Cagnes-sur-Mer and made occasional trips to Paris to hone his skills and knowledge. From landscapes to portraits and still life of meats and fish which he sourced from the local butchershop and fishmonger, Soutine filled each of his subjects with an emotional intensity and feverish energy.

Heralded decades later by the post-war generation of American Abstract Expressionists, Soutine’s pieces became the precursor to a more instinctual approach to painting. Just as Soutine’s career as a painter would not have been possible without Barnes’ patronage, the thread of philanthropy now continues from the benevolent circumstances that surrounded the creation of Nature morte aux poissons to its eventual purchaser. Formerly in the collection of Kirk Douglas, American actor, producer, director and philanthropist, who passed away earlier this year at the age of 103, this painting is now being offered by The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center to fund its vital research.

For 45 years, The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center has been redefining what is possible in cancer research — establishing a record of unparalleled excellence while saving lives. Based in Seattle, more than 3,000 world-renowned scientists and staff work from the laboratory to patient bedside to translate scientific insights into better preventive measures, treatments, and cures. Now faced with the new threat of COVID-19, the Fred Hutchinson virologists and infectious disease experts are confronting this global crisis head-on: from modelling the spread of the virus to expanding testing capacity and developing vaccines and treatments.

The tradition of giving flows on through Soutine's masterpiece, between patron Barnes, philanthropist Douglas, and now The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The sale of this painting in Christie's Impressionist and Modern Art Online sale now has the oportunity to make a significant impact. Bidding begins 1 July.

The Fred Hutchinson
Cancer Research Center

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