Lot # 009
Spring 2012 - 1st Session Live auction

Jean Albert McEwen
AANFM RCA 1923 - 1999 Canadian

Le drapeau écorché, phase 2, no. 12 (Trou de mémoire)
oil on canvas
signed and dated 1992 and on verso signed, titled variously and dated on the canvas and 1986 on the gallery labels
60 x 60 in  152.4 x 152.4cm

Provenance:
Mira Godard Gallery, Toronto
Art Gallery of Ontario, Art Rental & Sales Gallery, Toronto
Private Collection, Montreal

Literature:
Constance Naubert-Riser, Jean McEwen: Colour in Depth: Paintings and Works on Paper, 1951 - 1987, The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, 1987, page 50

In the 1960s Jean McEwen produced a series of works entitled Le drapeau inconnu (The Unknown Flag). In the mid-1980s another related series emerged – Le drapeau écorché (The Slaughtered Flag), of which this is a stunning example. Common to both these series were hot reds and blazing yellows, as in this incandescent golden work. McEwen’s brilliance as a colourist is in full play, as his central colour is enlivened with orange, pink and mauve, contrasted with background tones of green. Constance Naubert-Riser writes, “It is only after an examination of all the works in this series that the full critical significance of the title emerges: these ‘slaughtered flags’ are a reformulation of the problem of underlying structure treated so brilliantly in the ‘unknown flags’ series. The result of this reformulation is the complete obliteration of the central structure and a reassertion of the nonetheless increasingly threatened margins. So the element of diversity is back in force – the element that is ultimately the uniting feature of this oeuvre and the central paradox of all painting.”

Estimate: $10,000 ~ $15,000 CAD  
Sold for: $29,250 CAD (including Buyer's Premium)

All prices are in Canadian Dollars.

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