29 November 2017
Circle Dance, signed.
Pencil and watercolour, heightened with white, on paper, laid on cardboard, 31.5 by 48 cm.
Executed in 1903–1904.
Provenance: Collection of Lidia Brodskaya, daughter of the artist Isaac Brodsky, Moscow.
Private collection, Switzerland.
Authenticity of the work has been confirmed by the expert V. Petrov.
Authenticity has also been confirmed by the expert E. Zhukova.
Exhibited: Konstantin Fedorovich Yuon. Vystavka k 75-letiiu so dnia rozhdeniia, Academy of Arts of the USSR, Moscow, 1950 (label on the reverse).
Vystavka kartin, eskizov i etiudov “Russkaia zhivopis vtoroi poloviny XIX i nachala XX vv.”, iz chastnykh sobranii, Tsentralnyi dom rabotnikov iskusstv SSSR, Moscow, December 1951–February 1952 (label on the reverse).
Narodnyi khudozhnik SSSR Konstantin Fedorovich Yuon. 1875–1958, the State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, 1962 (label on the reverse).
Literature: Exhibition catalogue, Konstantin Fedorovich Yuon. Vystavka k 75-letiiu so dnia rozhdeniia, Moscow, Academy of Arts of the USSR, 1950.
Exhibition catalogue, Russkaia zhivopis vtoroi poloviny XIX i nachala XX vv. , Moscow, Gosudarstvennoe izdatelstvo izobrazitelnogo iskusstva, 1954, p. 60, No. 321, listed.
N. Tretiakov, K. F. Yuon, Moscow, Iskusstvo, 1957, p. 102, listed under year 1903.
Exhibition catalogue, Narodnyi khudozhnik SSSR Konstantin Fedorovich Yuon. 1875–1958, Moscow, Academy of Arts of the USSR, 1962.
Related literature: For another version of the work, see A. Koiransky, K. F. Yuon. Russkie khudozhniki, St Petersburg, Izdanie A. E. Kogana, 1918, illustrated on the cover.
Konstantin Yuon is among the most outstanding Russian painters from the first quarter of the 20th century. He is remembered as a reformer of the exaggerated refinement of the Mir iskusstva (World of Art) movement and as the artist who transformed the folk images of Somov and Kustodiev into a remarkable symbiosis, bearing simple and intelligible expression of Russian ethnicity. Eschewing fancy-dress fantasies, Yuon portrayed common people’s festivities and the spirit of the Russian peasantry celebrations with exceptional sensitivity. His instantly recognisable style and colourful motifs brought the artist immense popularity among respected connoisseurs of Russian art. Yuon was extremely productive as an artist, and his creative path led him to alliances with major Russian art movements of his time, from Mir iskusstva to the Union of Russian Artists (of which he was a founder) and the Association of Artists of Revolutionary Russia. The watercolour in the present catalogue, Circle Dance, comes from a series of works dedicated to folk festivities, country fairs and scenes from the serene life of the Russian province in the early 20th century. The artist captured the mood and colourful splendour of his characters, and conveyed the stability of village life, which still endured from the 19th century. The painterly plasticity of the work is recognisable as that of Yuon’s, as well as the generalised depiction of people and elements of landscape, the superbly organised composition, and the bright and festive colour scheme.
It is important to point out that Circle Dance comes from the collection of Lidia Brodskaya, who inherited it from her famous father, the painter Isaak Brodsky.
Notes on symbols:
* Indicates 5% Import Duty Charge applies.
Ω Indicates 20% Import Duty Charge applies.
§ Indicates Artist's Resale Right applies.
† Indicates Standard VAT scheme applies, and the rate of 20% VAT will be charged on both hammer price and premium.