MAX ERNST (1891-1976)
MAX ERNST (1891-1976)
MAX ERNST (1891-1976)
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Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more PROPERTY FROM A DISTINGUISHED DUTCH COLLECTION
MAX ERNST (1891-1976)

Sortons: L'instant et la durée

Details
MAX ERNST (1891-1976)
Sortons: L'instant et la durée
signed 'max ernst' (lower right)
oil with decalcomania on paper
16 1/8 x 12 7/8 in. (41 x 32.8 cm.)
Executed in 1966
Provenance
Alexander Iolas Gallery, New York.
Dorothea Tanning, Seillans.
Kent Belenius, Stockholm, by whom acquired from the above in 1978.
Anonymous sale, Sotheby's, London, 29 June 1994, lot 266.
Kunsthandel Lambert Tegenbosch, Heusden.
Acquired from the above by the family of the present owners in 1995, and thence by descent.
Literature
W. Spies & S. & G. Metken, Max Ernst, Werke 1964-1969, Cologne, 2007, no. 4163, p. 161 (illustrated).
Exhibited
Vence, Galerie Alphonse Chave, Max Ernst, Peintures et collages récents, September - November 1966, no. 13 (illustrated).
Munich, Galerie Stangl, Max Ernst, August - October 1967, no. 30 (illustrated).
S-Hertogenbosch, Noordbrabants Museum, Gekoesterde schoonheid: Kunst uit Brabants privébezit, May - August 2010, p. 110 (illustrated).
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.

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Olivier Camu
Olivier Camu Deputy Chairman, Senior International Director

Lot Essay


Painted in 1966, Sortons: L’instant et la durée illustrates Max Ernst’s enduring passion for the semi-automatic techniques, which had fuelled his creative energies since he first discovered them in the 1920s and 30s. Such processes added an unplanned element to Ernst’s compositions, feeding his curiosity for automatic images and aiding his ‘meditative and hallucinatory faculties,’ (‘Beyond Painting,’ in M. Caws, ed., Surrealism, London & New York, 2004, p. 215). In Sortons: L’instant et la durée, the artist plays with the effects of delcalcomania, generating unexpected, spontaneous patterns by pressing two sheets of paper together, one prepared with richly pigmented oil paint, and then peeling them apart to reveal an unmediated image. Here, almost the entire composition is taken over by the intricate, variegated pattern of magenta paint, which rises like a mountain before us, drawing our eye to the mystical sun or moon hovering in the deep blue sky above. This celestial star stands out from the rest of the composition through its rich layers of impastoed white paint, a contrast in textures that is repeated in the small white form which appears in the middle of the field of red paint. Simultaneously evoking the red sandstone landscapes of Arizona, where the artist had lived during his years in America, and suggesting the alien terrain of another world, in this work Ernst generates an enigmatic landscape painting that appears at once deeply familiar and yet completely otherworldly and unsettling.

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