4 June 2014
Corsica, a Smuggler's House, signed with initials and dated 1929, also further indistinctly signed, inscribed in Cyrillic “Kor…[sika]” and dated on the reverse.
Oil on canvas, 60.5 by 73 cm.
Provenance: A gift from the artist to the academic Alexander Gabrichevksy in the early 1950s.
Thence by descent to the previous owner.
Private collection, Europe.
Authenticity certificate from the expert Yu. Didenko.
Exhibited: Aleksandr Georgievich Gabrichevskii. Mir myslitelya i khudozhnika, The State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, 1992.
Iskusstvo v krugu uchenykh. Sobranie Stankevichei-Gabrichevskikh-Severtsovykh, Museum of Private Collections, Moscow, 3 February–6 March 2005.
Literature: O. Severtseva, Ya. Bryk and T. Lykova, Aleksandr Georgievich Gabrichevskii 1891–1968. K 100-letiyu so dnya rozhdeniya, Moscow, Sovetskii khudozhnik, 1992, p. 234, No. 230, illustrated; p. 236, listed.
Yu. Didenko, compiler of Polnyi katalog zhivopisnykh proizvedenii R.R. Fal’ka// D. Sarabianov, Yu. Didenko, Zhivopis’ Roberta Fal’ka. Polnyi katalog proizvedenii, Moscow, Elizium, 2006, p. 522, No. 726, illustrated and listed.
Robert Falk is rightly regarded as one of the best Russian colourists of the 20th century. His original technique of applying paint in several thick layers to create an unusual shimmering effect imparts a fascinating musical resonance to his pictures. The artist’s sojourn in France (1928–1937) is one of the most fruitful periods of his career. It is particularly at this time that Falk makes full use of the discoveries of the Post-Impressionists, above all Cézanne, by thoroughly exploring the potential of a patch of colour and its interaction with the overall chromatic structure of a picture. Robert Falk undertook a short trip to Corsica at the very beginning of his working tour in France. “The particular value of this landscape is that it is a rare example of Falk’s painting in his brief Corsican period, from which exceedingly few works survive: some gouaches, one painted portrait and two landscapes in oil”, writes Yulia Didenko. The present lot is one of two views of Corsica and a painting of the highest quality from Falk’s French period. Among the legacy left by this outstanding artist, this piece can easily hold its own against representative examples from museum collections.
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.