2 More
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more

It Belongs to You

It Belongs to You
signed ‘dal-pra.’ (on the reverse)
oil on linen
57 1/2 x 44 7/8in. (146 x 114cm.)
Painted in 2020
Cob Gallery, London.
Private Collection, USA.
Acquired from the above by the present owner.
London, Cob Gallery, Of Course You Are: Diane Dal-Pra, 2020.
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

Claudia Schürch
Claudia Schürch Senior Specialist, Interim Head of Department

Lot Essay

Painted in 2020, It Belongs to You is a compelling example of Diane Dal-Pra’s enigmatic, dreamlike compositions. Shown in profile, a woman sits in face-to-face embrace with a sheep. They are draped in swathes of fabric—a gauzy veil over their heads, a pink quilt tied with green string behind the woman’s back—which are painted in the exquisite, softly-lit detail typical of the artist’s work. Inspired by memories, dreams and her struggles with insomnia, she depicts women in surreal, totemic domestic settings. Interior and exterior realms seem to merge: notes of ritual, costume and fantasy shift between the everyday and the otherworldly. Her inclusion of translucent fabrics heightens the paintings’ elusive, obscurely symbolic aura.

Dal-Pra’s star has risen fast in recent years. Her work is held in the collections of the Fondation Louis Vuitton Foundation, Paris, the Yuz Museum Shanghai, and the Institute of Contemporary Art Miami, among others. Dissolutions, her first institutional UK solo show, opens at Mostyn in North Wales in July 2023. She was born in 1991 in Périgueux, in the southwest of France, and studied in Bordeaux and Toulouse before moving to Paris. Her hometown’s quiet atmosphere lent itself to slowness and observation: she remembers being captivated as a child by the dark, magnetic gaze of a Modigliani print in her grandmother’s house. She paints slowly and deliberately to this day, working out ideas in multiple sketches and oil studies before embarking on a large canvas, and sometimes spending days finessing small details in the final work. Time itself seems to come to a standstill within the paintings, their various elements poised together in statuesque silence.

Dal-Pra’s works have been compared to the surrealist—and magic realist—visions of René Magritte and Domenico Gnoli. She is equally inspired, however, by Renaissance and Mannerist painting, which she became closer to during her 2019 residency at Palazzo Monti in Brescia, Italy. The present work’s dusky pinks and limpid, fresco-like composition seem to speak to this influence. Its intimate, esoteric allure, however, belongs to Dal-Pra alone. ‘I try to stay as far away as possible from a narrative approach to avoid falling into anecdotes’, she says. ‘What really interests me is to capture an atmosphere, a tone, to understand the colour of a moment’ (D. Dal-Pra, quoted in K. Donoghue, ‘Diane Dal-Pra Paints Tender Totems to What Remains and What was Lost’, Whitewall, 19 January 2023).

More from 20th/21st Century: London Evening Sale

View All
View All