Estimate: £400,000 - £600,000
ca. US$568,678 - US$853,018
Price realised: £365,000
Joan Miró Figure 1981 painted bronze 102 x 47.5 x 31.5 cm (40 1/8 x 18 3/4 x 12 3/8 in.) Incised 'Miró'. Stamped with the foundry mark Parellada and numbered '3/6'. This work is number 3 from an edition of 6.
Provenance Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York Private Collection, New York James Goodman Gallery, New York Private Collection, Palm Beach Sotheby’s, New York, Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale, 9 May 2007, lot 380 Private Collection Sotheby’s, New York, Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale, May 5, 2009, lot 36 Acquired at the above sale by the present owner Exhibited Ludwigshafen, Wilhelm-Hack-Museum, Miró: Mein Atelier ist mein Garten, October 2000-January 2001 (another example exhibited) Genoa, Museo dell'Accademia Ligustica di Belle Arti, Joan Miró: L'armonia del fantastico. 7 July-15 September 2001 (another example exhibited) Tours, Château de Tours, De la figuration au geste: Miró à Tours, 27 October 2001-27 February 2002 Salerno, Complesso di Santa Sofia, Mediterraneo Miró, 16 November 2002-16 January 2003 Como, Villa Olmo, Joan Miró: Alchimista del segno, 13 March-6 June 2004 Barcelona, Generalitat de Catalunya, Joan Miró: La metàfora de l'objecte, February 2007-March 2008 Carcassone, Musée des beaux-arts, Miró: La métaphore de l'objet, 20 June-21 September 2008 Literature Miró en las colecciones del Estado, exh. cat., Madrid, Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, 1987, no. 89, p. 104 (another cast illustrated) Miró: Gemälde, Plastiken, Zeichnungen und Graphik, exh. cat., Frankfurt, Schirn Kunsthalle, 1988, no. 89, p. 120 (another cast illustrated) Le rêve interrompu de Miró exh. cat., Paris, Centre Culturel Espagnol, 1988, no. 41, p. 133 (another cast illustrated) Escultores de Miró, exh. cat., Llonja, Palma de Mallorca, 1990, no. 23, p. 141 (another cast illustrated) Palma: territori Miró, exh. cat., Fundació Pilar i Joan Miró a Mallorca, Palma de Mallorca, 1996, no. 68, p. 183 (another cast illustrated) Joan Miró The Last Bronze Sculptures 1981 -1983, exh. cat., Gerald Peters Gallery, Santa Fe, 2006, pp. 42-43 (another cast illustrated) E. F. Miró & P. O. Chapel, Joan Miró, Sculptures. Catalogue raisonné 1928-1982, Paris, 2006, no. 374, p. 347 (another cast illustrated) Video Joan Miró: Finding Peace in the Primal Two works made 40 years apart by the multi-disciplinary master Joan Miró recall the artist's interests in primal forms and typify the playful approach that came to define his career. Specialist Matt Langton describes the artist’s process of accumulating materials, and how the political turmoil in Europe informed his process. Catalogue Essay Cast just two years before Miró’s death, Figure is among the last of the sculptures the artist produced. This impressive sculptural creation is a testament to Miro’s enthusiasm and passion for creating art, even at the age of 88. Characteristically, this asymmetrical figure has departed from any representation of reality. Various discrete elements and unidentifiable forms coalesce into a wholeheartedly free and spontaneous work, just one of many attempts by the artist ‘to surprise meaning from matter. 'Despite any ambiguity or abstraction within the work, there is a tangible primal sentiment to it. With subtle odes to the figures of totemic and Palaeolithic art, Figure is a means for Miro ‘to rediscover the sources of human feeling.' (Lee 1947; in Rowell 1986, p.204) There is a head, anthropomorphized by deep, hollowed eyes and a few delicately incised lines that suggest cheeks, even a smile perchance. Miscellaneous objects protrude from this head, an oblong item as a nose, jagged tools as ears and an empty pill bottle perched delicately – perhaps as a hat. Beneath this playfulness is an arguably more monolithic form, bending slightly to produce an amorphous body for the head above. The entire figure stands on a humble, uneven wooden base. The rusty, oxidized hue of the bronze is akin to terracotta, with a slash of deep blue being the only break in color. Cast in bronze at the Parellada workshop in Barcelona, this sculpture is the third from an edition of six. However, beneath this bronze lie ambiguous materials of unknown origins. Miró spent the last two decades of his life en
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