Lot Sale Results

Bernard Buffet

Bernard Buffet

Bernard Buffet
October 2015 - 2nd Session Online auction

Lot # 101

Bernard Buffet
1928 - 1999 French

Toreador
oil on canvas
signed and dated 1960 and on verso titled on the "Waddington & Gorce Inc." label, inscribed ''Mr. Bernard'' on the "E. David et M. Garnier" label and "54E" on the canvas and stamped David et Garnier on the canvas
39 3/8 x 31 7/8 in  100 x 81cm

Provenance:
Galerie E. David et M. Garnier, Paris
Waddington & Gorce Inc., Montreal
Private Collection, Montreal

Literature:
Douglas Maxwell, ''Whatever Happened to Bernard Buffet?'', Modern Painters Magazine, 1994, page 66
François Lombard, Emmanuel David and Maurice Garnier, Biography, http://www.museebernardbuffet.com/enbiographie.html, accessed October 1, 2015

This work is included in the photographic archives of the Galerie Maurice Garnier, Paris.



Born in 1928 in Paris's Batignolles neighbourhood - an area known for its famous residents, such as poets Paul Verlaine and Stéphane Mallarmé, and writer Émile Zola - Bernard Buffet was a precocious artist. In an interview in Modern Painters Magazine, Buffet stated, ''I cannot remember ever not liking art...I was so fascinated by painting.'' He was admitted to the École nationale des beaux-Arts in Paris at only 15 years old. Four years later, the Musée national d'art moderne de la Ville de Paris acquired his Nature morte au poulet (Still Life with Chicken). Shortly thereafter, art dealer Emmanuel David took Buffet under his wing and became his exclusive dealer along with Maurice Garnier. Pierre Bergé - the entrepreneur and art collector who later became Yves Saint Laurent's business and life partner - was his manager. Buffet was part of the group L'Homme Témoin (The Witness), which was considered a new school of figurative painting, and he was regarded as a leading figure in post-war figurative art. He worked in a variety of mediums - painting, watercolour, drawing, lithography and engraving, and in various subjects - portraits, nudes, still lives, landscapes and cityscapes. In 1958, at the age of 30, his first retrospective was held at Galerie Charpentier. His work has been exhibited internationally, at the Institut Français in Berlin (1958), the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg (1991) and in Kassel at the Documenta-Halle (1994). In 1973 the Bernard Buffet Museum opened in Higashino, Japan, which has 2,000 of his works in its collection.

Buffet's Toreador presents an angular and elongated torero looking contemplatively into the distance. His black, white and yellow traje de luces (suit of lights) is completed with a black montera, the traditional hat worn by bullfighters, and a slim corbatín, or necktie. Melancholy, yet refined and dignified, this matador perfectly embodies Buffet's fondness for strong and wistful characters inspired by painters such as Francis Gruber and Georges Rouault. Matadors made frequent appearances from the late 1950s to the late 1960s in Buffet's paintings. One could speculate that this series was inspired by his work for the Opéra de Marseille, where he created the set design for the 1962 production of Georges Bizet's famous opera, Carmen, which is set in Spain and features the gutsy toreador Escamillo.

Estimate: $40,000 ~ $60,000 CAD

Sold For: $413,000.00 CAD (including buyer's premium)


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