Pablo Picasso (1881-1973)
Property From the Collection of Joan and Preston Robert Tisch In 1986, at the height of America’s AIDS crisis, Joan Tisch walked into the offices of New York’s Gay Men’s Health Crisis on a mission. “I’m Joan,” she announced, “and I’d like to volunteer.” It was a simple declaration—marked by humility, urgency, and a belief in change—that characterized Tisch’s extraordinary spirit. For decades, she was an integral part of her family’s efforts in philanthropy, and with unflagging zeal and generosity, she helped create a lasting legacy in New York and the wider world. Joan Tisch was born in Manhattan in 1927. While studying English at the University of Michigan, the young Joan met Preston Robert “Bob” Tisch, a fellow student and Brooklyn native. “We literally met hanging out on the steps of the library,” she laughed in later years. The couple married in 1948, and went on to have three children. Across nearly six decades of marriage, Bob and Joan Tisch rose to become two of New York’s most prominent civic and philanthropic leaders. Bob Tisch became a goodwill ambassador for his city: in addition to championing New York in Washington, he lobbied to bring two Democratic National Conventions to Manhattan, and generated support for largescale urban development initiatives such as the Javits Center. A lifelong football fan, Bob Tisch purchased a fifty percent stake in the New York Giants in 1991. Joan Tisch was a remarkably driven woman with an unwavering belief in her family’s ability to affect change. Beyond their significant contributions to institutions such as the University of Michigan and Tufts University, the Tisches’ native New York was a particular focus of their energies. From the Central Park Children’s Zoo to New York University, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Museum of Modern Art (where Joan Tisch served as a trustee and posthumously donated works by Léger, Braque, and Giacometti,) the family provided significant support to organizations benefitting New Yorkers from all walks of life. Today, the Tisch name can be found throughout the city, reflecting a multi-generational ethos of giving. Joan Tisch was a board member of Citymeals-on-Wheels, where Bob Tisch served as founding president, as well as a stalwart patron of the 92nd Street Y, where she co-chaired the Tisch Center for the Arts. The Tisch family made a transformative impact on NYU, providing major gifts across academic disciplines and schools. Their contributions to the university encompassed educational programs and scholarships in the arts and humanities; the acquisition and renovation of the building now known as the Tisch School of the Arts; Tisch Hospital at NYU Langone Medical Center; the Joan H. Tisch Center for Women’s Health and the Preston Robert Tisch Center for Men’s Health; and the NYU Preston Robert Tisch Institute for Global Sport. Of Joan Tisch’s many achievements in the public sphere, it is her groundbreaking advocacy during the AIDS crisis and with the Gay Men’s Health Crisis that remains most notable. “When Joan Tisch walked through the doors of GMHC in 1986,” noted Marjorie J. Hill, the organization’s former CEO, “no one could have predicted the impact she would have… let alone the influence she would exercise as one of the world’s most visible AIDS advocates and philanthropists.” Tisch had lost several friends to AIDS, and understood the importance of personal volunteerism in fighting the virus. From stuffing envelopes to counseling patients navigating medical bills and emotional crises on the GMHC hotline, Tisch was a truly hands-on supporter. “For the first time in years of volunteering,” she said of her early involvement with GMHC, “I had become emotionally involved.” It is a testament to Tisch’s humility that the GMHC staff remained unaware of their fervent volunteer’s social status. When the GMHC photocopier broke down, Tisch was informed that they could not afford a replacement. “My mom promptly wrote a check for $475 and handed it to the manager,” Jonathan Tisch remembered. “He looked very dubious. ‘How do I know this check won’t bounce?’ She replied, ‘Trust me, it won’t bounce.’” The woman dubbed “GMHC’s most famous anonymous volunteer” was eventually asked to join the board of directors, where she spearheaded its transformation from a grassroots movement to the world’s most respected AIDS advocacy and services agency. In 1997, Tisch provided GMHC with a monetary gift that allowed the organization to move into a new headquarters named in her honor; at the time, it was one of the largest bequests ever made to an AIDS-related cause. “Joan Tisch… never said ‘no’ to GMHC,” the organization’s CEO Kelsey Louie wrote upon her death. “GMHC will never stop saying ‘thank you’ to her.” “You could ask what would New York be without the Tisches,” MoMA trustee Marie-Josée Kravis mused upon awarding the family the museum’s David Rockefeller Award, “and I think a lot of institutions would be different.”
Pablo Picasso (1881-1973)

Deux nus

Pablo Picasso (1881-1973)
Deux nus
signed 'Picasso' (lower right) and dated '' (upper left)
colored wax crayons and black Conté crayon over pencil on paper
9 ½ x 11 5/8 in. (24 x 31.8 cm.)
Drawn on 20-25 July 1962
Jeanne Gottesman, Nassau, New York (circa 1965).
Joy Ungerleider, Larchmont, New York (by descent from the above, circa 1967).
Andrew Ungerleider, Santa Fe (by descent from the above, 1994).
Private collection, Europe.
Michael N. Altman & Co., Inc., New York (acquired from the above, 1997).
Acquired from the above by the late owners, 10 October 1997.
C. Zervos, Pablo Picasso, Paris, 1968, vol. 20, no. 341 (illustrated, pl. 137).

Lot Essay

Embellished with wax crayons in a rainbow of hues, this drawing depicting two female nudes—joined by a black cat and tiny kitten at lower right—is one of the more elaborately rendered pages that Pablo Picasso signed and detached from a spiral-bound sketchbook whose front cover he inscribed “17.6.62” (Glimcher, no. 165). The double-dating at upper left on the sheet denotes the two-step process by which Picasso completed this image. First employing a graphite pencil, the artist set down the contours and hatching of the figures and creatures in a single session on 20 July. He returned to the drawing on the 25th to enhance the imagery with color—of the sixteen studies of two nudes that he completed between 16 and 27 July (Zervos, vol. 20, nos. 327-342), he further treated only six in this manner.
The first two drawings in Sketchbook no. 165 are studies Picasso drew after Manet’s Le déjeuner sur l’herbe, which had been his primary project of interpretive appropriation since August 1959, numbering in the end more than 175 paintings and drawings. Pencil studies of lovers in bed comprise the next eighteen pages, leading to the series of Deux nus, with Picasso’s wife Jacqueline as his subject, which may be likened to Manet’s artists’ models at their ease—the presence of the cats perhaps alludes to the feline atop the bed in Manet’s Olympia. Picasso subsequently returned to the Déjeuner theme in another eight studies, bringing this lengthy enterprise to a conclusion in four drawings dated 1 and 2 August 1962, a finale which Picasso’s men and women celebrate by indulging in an orgy.
Following a series of paintings based on Poussin’s L’enlèvement des sabines in October 1962, a campaign Picasso claimed had left him “spent,” he declared to Hélène Parmelin that he was “embarking upon an incredible adventure…to rediscover painting…in the form of the natural and not the form of art—the grass as grass, the nude as nude” (quoted in Picasso: The Artist and Model, New York, 1965, pp. 9 and 10). The artist and model became his fundamental theme, later joined by the mosqueteros and their ilk—Picasso had settled on his subjects for the final decade of his long career.

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