26 November 2014
Portrait of the Actress Lyubov Orlova, signed and dated 1951, also further signed, numbered "1557" and dated on the reverse.
Oil on canvas, 116 by 96.5 cm.
Provenance: Private collection, Europe.
Authenticity certificate from the expert I. Geraschenko.
Exhibited: Pyatnadtsataya personal’naya vystavka P.P. Konchalovskogo, k 75-letiyu so dnya rozhdeniya, Academy of Fine Arts, Moscow, 1951.
Vesennyaya vystavka moskovskikh khudozhnikov, Moscow, 1955.
Petr Petrovich Konchalovsky, Vystavka proizvedenii, Leningrad, 1956.
Vystavka russkogo iskusstva iz chastnykh sobranii, Minsk, 1961–1962.
Literature: Exhibition catalogue, Pyatnadtsataya personl’naya vystavka P.P. Konchalovskogo, k 75-letiyu so dnya rozhdeniya, Moscow, Academy of Fine Arts of the USSR, 1951, illustrated.
Exhibition catalogue, Vesennyaya vystavka moskovskikh khudozhnikov, Moscow, 1955, listed.
Exhibition catalogue, Petr Petrovich Konchalovsky, Vystavka proizvedenii, Moscow 1956, listed.
Exhibition catalogue, Vystavka russkogo iskusstva iz chastnykh sobranii, Minsk, 1961–1962.
Konchalovsky. Khudozhestvennoe nasledie, Moscow, Iskusstvo, 1964, p. 154, listed as “zhi 1269”.
The Portrait of the Actress Lyubov Orlova belongs to the mature period of the renowned Russian artist, Petr Konchalovsky. Konchalovsky gained recognition not only as one of the most influential avant-garde painters, having founded the ground-breaking Jack of Diamonds group, but also as an incredibly skilful and perceptive portraitist.
The offered portrait is a testament to the artist’s mastery. It was painted when Konchalovsky had left behind his experiments with avant-garde trends and what we find instead, is a laconic compositional structure, a subtle yet nuanced colour palette and a focus on expressing the character and essence of his heroine. Lyubov Orlova (1902–1975) – one of the most famous actresses of the last century and the darling of the Soviet people – comes to life in this understated, yet lively portrait. The simple, plain background does not distract from the artist’s primary goal of conveying the internal psychology of the sitter, and his emphasis on her inner beauty and warmth is a counter-balance to the physical attractiveness of one of the biggest celebrities of that time.
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.