12 June 2008
Hindu Dancer base engraved "D.H. Chiparus/ETLING PARIS".
Cold-painted parcel-gilt and silver bronze, carved ivory, on a Portor marble base, 60 by 24 by 22.5 cm.
Provenance: Private collection.
Literature: Victor Arwas, Art Deco Sculpture: Chryselephantine Statuettes of the Twenties and Thirties, Academy Edition, London, 1975, p. 33, p. 61 illustrated.
Brian Catley, Art Deco and other Figures, Antique Collectors' Club, Woodbridge, Suffolk, 1978, p. 87.
A. Shayo. Chiparus: Master of Art Deco. Abbeville Press Inc., USA, 1993, p. 121 illustrated.
Art Deco Sculpture: from Root to Flourishing, vol 1, Russian House Art Deco, 2008.
The son of prosperous Romanians, Chiparus emigrated in 1912 to Paris where he studied at the Paris Academy of Fine Arts and took lessons from Antoine Mercier and Jean Boucher. From the 1920s his style had developed, distinguished by a high level of ornamentation and flamboyance. Henceforward his creative work was devoted primarily to figures of dancers and beautiful women of his time. In this figure, Chiparus created an image of Margarete Gertrude Zelle, an infamous Parisian dancer at the start of the twentieth century. Born in Holland, she asserted she was a priestess of the god Shiva, successfully filling a niche as the only performer of sacred eastern dances, performing as Mata Hari. She would take the stage showered in rose petals and would reveal her bare body to a small circle of privileged devotees. During the First World War she worked as a French secret agent, but also fed information to German intelligence, for which she was shot by order of the French court on 15 October 1917. The name Mata Hari has since become a greater legend than she herself could have wished for.
For more information please refer to printed catalogue
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.