MacDougall's Russian Art Auctions 1-2 Dec 2010

1 December 2010

Artist Index / Full Catalogue

Nude on Striped Fabric

* 379. TYRSA, NIKOLAI 1887-1942

Nude on Striped Fabric signed and titled in Cyrillic on the reverse

Oil on canvas, 54.5 by 66 cm.
100,000-120,000 GBP

Provenance: Acquired directly from the artist’s family.
Private collection, Europe.

Literature: Tyrsa: New Works, Moscow, Skorpion, 2007, p. 115, cat. 172, illustrated.

Nude on Striped Fabric is a beautiful canvas by Nikolai Tyrsa, probably the most joyous of all Leningrad artists. Tyrsa was, in his individual style, the unrivalled master of luminous painting effects, bringing to the Soviet 1930s the "bare" truth of Impressionism. His lively brushwork, sparkling as if still moist, captured dozens of nude beauties, eye-catching and stylistically recognisable. The apparent simplicity and effortlessness of his paintings from life slyly mask a skill which few can match. The complexity of the task the artist has set himself is obvious. This "Leningrad Olympia", reclining in a relaxed pose among bright orange and yellow Finnish fabrics, is exquisite in her dizzying combination of shades. The colour of her bare, sultry body, effectively adorned by the flamboyant textiles, is hardly muted by the tonally cold pale-blue patch of the bed-cover and the almost dark-blue window aperture.

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.