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Soviet and Post-Soviet art in the Summer 2021 sale at the Shapiro: Arkhipenko, Deineka, Nesterova


On July 31, 2021, Shapiro Auctions will hold the Summer International Fine and Decorative Art auction featuring works of XIX-XX century European, Russian, Israeli, Mexican, American, Vietnamese artists, including Soviet and Post-Soviet paintings and sculptures to be presented extensively. Among the top lots are “Torse” by the renowned cubist sculptor Alexander Arkhipenko, a genre scene executed by Aleksandr Deineka during his trip to Italy, surrealistic “People Cards” by Natalia Nesterova, sunny landscape with Lake Gennesaret by Konstantin Gorbatov, and some other works.

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Alexander Arkhipenko
Alexander Arkhipenko (Ukrainian 1887-1964).
Torse
oil on canvas
76.2 x 51.1 cm (30 1/8 x 20 in.)
signed lower left
More images here.

The top lot to be auctioned is “Torse” (estimated at $125'000 - $175'000) by Alexander Arkhipenko, balanced with symmetric projections from the sitter's elbow to the chest, belly and thighs. In the typical for Arkhipenko manner negative space is used to emphasize compositional symmetry with the shadow giving an impression of another figure standing behind. Works by Alexander Arkhipenko make part of the collections in the leading museums with the State Hermitage among others.

Provenance:

  • Collection of Lydia Nadejena, New York
  • Christie's, New York, May 7, 1991, lot 95
  • Christie's, New York, February 23, 1999, lot 57
  • Ketterer Kunst, Munich, November 20, 1999, lot 335
  • Christie's, New York, September 10, 2008, lot 117
  • Acquired at the above by the present owner.

Note:

  • Observed in frame, the painting appears in good condition.
  • Overall very fine and stable craquelure visible to the naked eye, most notably to the shaded areas.
  • The verso has been treated with wax.
  • Inspection under UV shows retouching around less than 5%.
  • Framed dimensions: 92 x 67 cm (36 1/4 x 26 3/8 in.)
  • The Archipenko Foundation has confirmed the authenticity of this work
Natalia Nesterova
Natalia Nesterova (Russian B. 1944).
People Cards, 1998
oil on canvas
198 x 147 cm (78 x 57 7/8 in.)
monogrammed lower right; signed, dated and titled on verso
More images here.

An innovative style of Natalia Nesterova applies surrealistic features in her “People Cards”, 1998 (estimated at $15’000 - $20’000). A gymnastic pyramid looks right like a house of cards, and most probably the costumes of people resemble some sports uniform. This impression creates an allegory that may showcase social inequality and interdependence at the same time, and most importantly the fragility of life. Natalia Nesterova is an active member of the Russian Academy of Arts. Her works form part of the collections of the leading museums including the State Tretyakov Gallery, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.

Provenance:

  • Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner
  • Private Collection, New York

Note:

  • Unframed, the painting appears in age-appropriate condition.
  • Visible wear resulting in scattered losses to the corners and edges of the canvas.
  • Surface dust visible to the impasto.
  • Not inspected under UV.
Aleksandr Deineka
Aleksandr Deineka (Russian 1899-1969).
Woman with Stroller, Italy, circa 1935
oil on canvas board
65 x 49 cm (25 5/8 x 19 1/4 in.)
signed lower right
More images here.

Aleksandr Deineka visited Italy, France and the USA in 1935. It was during that trip that he made several works, which were subsequently taken to the collection of the State Tretyakov Galley. Like other works by Deineka, “Woman with Stroller, Italy”, c. 1935 (estimated at $40'000 - $60'000), showcases progress, movement, and is full of life.

Provenance:

  • Acquired in the 1960s by the family of the present owner.
  • Property of an Italian Countess.

Note:

  • Observed in frame, the painting appears in good condition.
  • The board has is slightly convex. Overall age-appropriate very fine and stable craquelure.
  • A small scratch to the upper right corner, measuring 5 cm (2 in.) in length.
  • Rubbing to the left edge of the canvas due to the frame. Inspection under UV shows around 5% of retouching, most notably to the upper right corner, left edge with scattered retouching.
  • Framed dimensions: 81 x 65 cm (31 7/8 x 25 5/8 in.)
Konstantin Gorbatov
Konstantin Gorbatov (Russian 1876-1945).
Tiberias, Lake Gennesaret, 1935
oil on canvas
69.5 x 86.5 cm (27 3/8 x 34 in.)
signed and dated lower right
More images here.

A landscape “Tiberias, Lake Gennesaret”, 1935 (estimated at $40'000 - $60'000) by the professor of the Imperial Academy of Arts Konstantin Gorbatov depicts a mosque by the lake on a sunny afternoon.

Provenance:

  • Sotheby's, London, 10 June 2009, lot 377
  • Acquired at the above by the current owner

Note:

  • Observed in frame, the painting appears in good condition.
  • Overall very fine and stable craquelure visible to the naked eye.
  • A visible horizontal line caused by the stretcher resulting in discoloration along the top edge.
  • Inspection under UV shows no apparent sign of restoration.
  • Framed dimensions: 76 x 93 cm (29 7/8 x 36 5/8 in.)
Kirill Zdanevich
Kirill Zdanevich (Georgian 1892-1969).
Composition
watercolor on paper
42 x 33 cm (16 1/2 x 13 in.) [full sheet]
initial right center
More images here.

Among the highlights is cubic futuristic “Composition” by Kirill Zdanevich (estimated at $30'000 - $40'000). Zdanevich was a member of the artistic group “Donkey’s Tail”, established by Natalia Goncharova and Mikhail Larionov in 1912, and also attended the studio of Alexander Arkhipenko.

Provenance:

  • Acquired directly from the artist's family by the present owner.

Note:

  • Observed in frame, the painting appears in good condition.
  • Minor cracking along the upper left edge, lower left corner and most notably to the upper right center, measuring 5 cm (2 in.) in length.
  • Not inspected under UV.
  • Framed dimensions: 55 x 45 cm (21 5/8 x 17 3/4 in.)
Semyon Faibisovich
Semyon Faibisovich (Russian B. 1949).
He and She,2007
oil and mixed on canvas
145 x 145 cm (57 1/8 x 57 1/8 in.)
dated lower right; signed, dated, titled and inscribed author's variant on verso
More images here.

“He and She” (estimated at $30'000 - $40'000) is a large-scale work by the photorealist Semyon Faibisovich, executed with mixed media. The artist captured an ordnary scene in the public transport to convey the story of the relationship between a man and a woman.

Provenance:

  • Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner
  • Private Collection, New York

Note:

  • Observed in frame, the painting appears in very good original condition.
  • No issues apparent to the naked eye.
  • Not viewed under UV.
  • Framed dimensions: 153 x 153 cm (60 1/4 x 60 1/4 in.)
Leonid Purygin
Leonid Purygin (Russian 1951-1996).
Triptych
central panel oil on canvas, others oil on panel
dimensions when opened: 152 x 121 cm (59 7/8 x 47 5/8 in.)
initialed, numbered 1987282 and inscribed in Russian lower right
More images here.

“Triptych” (estimated at $30’000 - $40’000) by the primitivist painter Leonid Purygin is made in the format resembling a real triptych, and showcases phantasmagoric art brute images, which Purygin seeks to constantly recreate in his art.

Provenance:

  • Acquired by the present owner in 1998 through Vitaly Patsiukov, a prominent art critic and curator of contemporary art.

Note:

  • The painting appears in age-appropriate condition.
  • Overall surface grime and rubbing visible to the exterior and interior of the triptych and panels.
  • Very fine and stable craquelure visible to the triangular panel.
  • Inspection under UV shows no apparent signs of restoration.
  • Dimensions when closed: 152 x 60 cm (59 7/8 x 23 5/8 in.)
Adalbert Erdelyi
Adalbert Erdelyi (Ukrainian 1891-1955)
Basilica in Uzhgorod, 1933
oil on canvas
63 x 59 cm (24 3/4 x 23 1/4 in.)
signed lower right
More images here.

“Basilica in Uzhgorod”, 1933 (estimated at $15’000 - $20’000), by Adalbert Erdelyi, who was one of the leading Ukrainian painters of the 1st half of the XXth centiry is among the top lots in the upcoming sale. Erdelyi graduated from the Hungarian Royal Drawing School, and lived in Munich, Prague, and Paris. He participated in the exhibitions together with Henri Matisse, Andre Derain and Pierre Bonnard.

Note:

  • Observed in frame, the painting appears in good condition.
  • The canvas has warped slightly at the corners. A visible horizontal line across the top edge, due to the frame.
  • With no significant issues visible to the naked eye.
  • Inspection under UV shows no apparent sign of restoration.
  • Framed dimensions: 65 x 69 cm (25 5/8 x 27 1/8 in.)
Oleg Tselkov
Oleg Tselkov (Russian 1934-2021).
Portrait of Vladimir Kartsev, 1971
oil on canvas board
55 x 39 cm (21 5/8 x 13 5/8 in.)
signed, dated and titled on verso
More images here.

“Portrait of Vladimir Kartsev” (estimated at $15’000 - $20’000) by the renowned non-conformist Oleg Tselkov had been executed in Soviet Russia before he left for France in 1977.

Provenance:

  • Acquired directly from the artist
  • Macdougall's, London, 2 December 2010, lot 508
  • Private Collection, New York

Literature:

  • For similar works, see Roger Pierre Turine, Oleg Tselkov, Moscow, Bonfi 2002

Note:

  • Observed in frame, the painting appears in age-appropriate condition. Losses to the right edge.
  • Overall very fine craquelure consistent with age.
  • Inspection under UV shows a layer of varnish and fluorescence visible to the craquelure.
  • Framed dimensions: 98 x 74 cm (38 5/8 x 29 1/8 in.)
Boris Orlov
Boris Orlov (Russian B. 1941).
The Imperial Totem, 1990
enamel on aluminum
height: 77 cm (30 1/4 in.), dimensions of base: 29 x 29 cm (11 3/8 x 11 3/8 in.)
More images here.

“The Imperial Totem” sculpture (estimated at $8,000 - $12,000) by Boris Orlov, whose art represents Soviet underground, is an irony of Soviet ideology clichés actively propagated. Orlov’s works are kept in the leading museums around the world – The State Tretyakov Gallery, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Martin-Gropius-Bau.

Note:

  • The sculpture appears in good condition.
  • Overall surface dust visible to the naked eye.
  • Minor scratches visible on the center left of the back and on the base of the sculpture. No apparent issues visible to the naked eye. With no significant issues to report.

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Photos and information: courtesy of Shapiro Auctions


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