VICTOR MAN (B. 1974)
VICTOR MAN (B. 1974)
VICTOR MAN (B. 1974)
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Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more
VICTOR MAN (B. 1974)

D with Raven

VICTOR MAN (B. 1974)
D with Raven
signed, signed with the artist’s initials and dated 'VM Victor 2015' (on the reverse)
oil on wood
8 1⁄2 x 6 1⁄4in. (21.5 x 16cm.)
Painted in 2015
Galeria Plan B, Berlin/Cluj.
Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2015.
Die Rose ist ohne Warum. Sie blühet, weil sie blühet, exh. cat., Berlin, Galerie Neu, 2020, p. 30 (illustrated in colour, p. 31).
Berlin, Galerie Neu, Victor Man, 2016.
Special notice
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. This lot has been imported from outside of the UK for sale and placed under the Temporary Admission regime. Import VAT is payable at 5% on the hammer price. VAT at 20% will be added to the buyer’s premium but will not be shown separately on our invoice.

Brought to you by

Keith Gill
Keith Gill Head of Department

Lot Essay

Sparkling with supernatural mystery, D with Raven (2015) is a compelling, jewel-like work by the Romanian painter Victor Man. A girl poses in profile, her head turned slightly towards the viewer. On her shoulder perches a raven, black and beady-eyed; she seems to be listening to the bird, with an enigmatic half-smile upon her lips. Cast in an atmosphere of greenish, otherworldly darkness, the girl’s blue blouse shimmers with sequined flashes, and the floral designs on her skirt glow like ghostly tongues of flame. On the wall behind her is a shield-shaped mirror, which holds the small, spectral image of a figure: this being might be reflected from inside the room, or trapped within the mirror—he may even be the painter himself. Man’s dreamlike paintings are imbued with occult, mythic and literary themes, often inspired by the Symbolist and Romantic traditions of the 19th century. Here, the surreal scene has oblique echoes of Edgar Allan Poe’s 1845 poem ‘The Raven’, whose narrator is driven mad by the taunting bird and his memories of lost love.

Man paints slowly and methodically, modulating his works’ rich chromatic moods through glazed veils and layers of oil. The present work is executed on wood, its intimate scale recalling the devotional icons and precise, luminous panel portraits of the early Renaissance. A larger composition on canvas, Untitled (Connaissez-vous des Esseintes?) (2015, Tate, London), features the same sitter in what appears to be an outdoor setting: Man’s characters seem able to shift guises as they move among his theatrical tableaux. At once painted in an old-masterly style and handled in a contemporary manner, Man’s work reflects various influences in its densely-orchestrated combinations of images and language, history and fiction, and light and darkness. Taken as a whole, his work is a tour-de-force into the multiple dimensions of memory. For every image that is carefully evoked from the recesses of history, there are many others that are plunged into the slippery abyss of remembrance and amnesia. D with Raven imagines a space of wistful, uncanny ambiguity, where an unresolved story plays out with the seductive power of a dream.

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