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Sotheby's NY Presents: Important Judaica and Israeli & International Art

  • Auktion
    Sotheby's NY Presents: Important Judaica and Israeli & International Art
    15.12.2016
New York

NEW YORK, 2 December – Sotheby’s annual New York auction of Israeli & International Art on 15 December 2016 spans a century of Israeli art, including significant examples from all major movements represented by this diverse collecting field. In addition to a rich selection of works by Reuven Rubin, Moshe Castel, and Mordecai Ardon, the sale includes significant examples by New Horizons artists Joseph Zaritsky and Avigdor Stematsky, as well as cutting-edge contemporary photography and video by artists like Ori Gersht and Ronen Sharabani. The auction is led by Marc Chagall’s poignant painting Juif à la Thora (est. $1.5/2 million, above). The sale will be on view in our York Avenue galleries from 10 December through 15 December, alongside the auction of Important Judaica.

CHAGALL’S HOMAGE
Painted between 1968-78, Juif à la Thora is a magnificent homage to the artist’s Jewish heritage and upbringing. The painting depicts a young Jewish man, wearing Tefillin and wrapped in a long Tallit, holding a Torah in a loving embrace as he floats above the village below. To the right, a fully rendered open Ark reveals additional Torah scrolls and prayer books, lit from within by a golden glow. The figure exudes power and strength – a potent symbol of survival and renewal in spite of all adversity. The intensely-Jewish subject is derived from a drawing which Chagall executed in the aftermath of the Second World War in 1947 and later used as the frontispiece of his friend Joseph Opatoshu’s book, The Last Revolt, The Story of Rabbi Akiba, 1948. The painting remained in the collection of the artist’s family for almost 30 years following his passing in 1985.

PROPERTY FROM THE BEN URI GALLERY AND MUSEUM, LONDON
Founded in 1915, Ben Uri is Britain’s oldest Jewish cultural organization. Originally an ‘Arts Society’ designed to provide support for Yiddish-speaking, Jewish-émigré artists and craftsmen working outside the cultural mainstream, Ben Uri’s founders nursed the ambition of building a National Museum of Jewish Art by assembling a permanent collection of work by Jewish artists – which, given the time and circumstances, was a grand and visionary objective. Today it comprises over 400 artists from 35 countries of birth, and, uniquely, among national collections, two-thirds of the artists are émigrés, and over a quarter are women. The collection is widely recognized as a unique and distinctive visual and academic survey of Jewish artistic and social life during the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries in Britain. The proceeds of the sale will benefit the museum's strategic development plans for its second millennium of public service, including wider engagement both nationally and internationally.

The group of 12 works on offer this December includes three paintings by Moshe Castel, led by Father and Son (est. $40/60,000, left). Painted in 1928, the narrative of this work expresses the specific relationship the figures have to one another and to the neighborhood they are strolling through. The theme of figures walking through their home environments is carried on throughout Castel’s career into the 1930’s, and visual elements like the red belt became a painterly signature. It has been suggested that the work could even be a self- portrait of the artist as a child, walking hand-in-hand with his own father, Rabbi Yehuda Castel.

SEMINAL WORKS BY REUVEN RUBIN
The auction features 10 works by renowned Romanian-born Israeli painter Reuven Rubin. This group includes a superb work from the late 1920’s, Boy with Goldfish (est. $150/250,000, right) and a 1930’s Self-Portrait from the Ben Uri Gallery and Museum collection (est. $200/300,000, below). Boy with Goldfish is a charming 1929 portrait depicting a young boy from the artist’s Tel Aviv neighborhood, delicately grasping a goldfish. The subject of a fisherman and his catch recurs in Rubin’s works throughout his career, expressing the artist’s view of man in harmony with nature.
Rubin’s vivid Self-Portrait from 1937 shows the artist at work on an unseen canvas, with a vase of delicately rendered flowers by his side. The work reflects a turning point in the artist’s career, as he veered away from his signature naïve style of the 1920s, full of symbolism and storytelling with a flattened composition, to a more painterly style with an exaggerated emphasis on color, light and texture.

A MYSTERIOUS PORTRAIT BY MORDECAI ARDON
Mordecai Ardon’s Parable of 1 x 1 is a highly important self-portrait of the artist as a boy that exemplifies the exact moment in which the artist abandoned the naturalistic approach of his early self-portraits and developed a language of symbols to describe thoughts and feelings (est. $180/250,000, right). In Parable of 1 x 1, Ardon, the student, sits at a table studying a geometric equation, as a mouse runs across a path leading into a trap. The artist confronts the universal yearning for answers or solutions to life’s deepest mysteries, symbolized here by a simple geometric equation. In December 2014, Sotheby’s set a record for the artist and a record price at auction for any Israeli artist with Ardon’s 1969 canvas The Awakening, which sold for $821,000.






  • 15.12.2016
    Auktion »
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus »

    Israeli & International Art
    15 DECEMBER 2016 | 3:00 PM EST | NEW YORK



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  • Lot 37 Marc Chagall Juif à la Thora With the estate stamp Marc Chagall (lower right) Oil, tempera, and colored inks on canvas 36 1/4 by 28 3/4 in. 92 by 73.2 cm Painted circa 1968-1976.  Est. $1.5/2 million
    Lot 37 Marc Chagall Juif à la Thora With the estate stamp Marc Chagall (lower right) Oil, tempera, and colored inks on canvas 36 1/4 by 28 3/4 in. 92 by 73.2 cm Painted circa 1968-1976. Est. $1.5/2 million
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 12 Property Of A Private Collection, New York Reuven Rubin Boy With Goldfish  Signed Rubin and in Hebrew (lower right) Oil on canvas 34 1/4 by 25 1/2 in. 88.3 by 64.8 cm Painted in 1929.  Est. $150/250,000
    Lot 12 Property Of A Private Collection, New York Reuven Rubin Boy With Goldfish Signed Rubin and in Hebrew (lower right) Oil on canvas 34 1/4 by 25 1/2 in. 88.3 by 64.8 cm Painted in 1929. Est. $150/250,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 15 Property From The Ben Uri Gallery And Museum, London Reuven Rubin Self-Portrait Signed Rubin and again in Hebrew (lower left) Oil on canvas 35 3/4 by 25 in. 91 by 63.5 cm Painted in 1937.  Est. $200/300,000
    Lot 15 Property From The Ben Uri Gallery And Museum, London Reuven Rubin Self-Portrait Signed Rubin and again in Hebrew (lower left) Oil on canvas 35 3/4 by 25 in. 91 by 63.5 cm Painted in 1937. Est. $200/300,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 14 Property From The Ben Uri Gallery And Museum, London Moshe Elazar Castel Father And Son Signed M. Castel and dated 28 (lower left) Oil on canvas laid down on board 31 by 25 in. 79 by 63.5 cm Painted in 1928.  Est. $40/60,000
    Lot 14 Property From The Ben Uri Gallery And Museum, London Moshe Elazar Castel Father And Son Signed M. Castel and dated 28 (lower left) Oil on canvas laid down on board 31 by 25 in. 79 by 63.5 cm Painted in 1928. Est. $40/60,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 87 Property From An Important Private Collection, Israel Adi Nes Untitled (Hagar), From The Biblical Stories Series Chromogenic print 55 by 55 in. 140 by 140 cm Executed in 2006, this work is number 2 from an edition of 5  Est. $15/20,000
    Lot 87 Property From An Important Private Collection, Israel Adi Nes Untitled (Hagar), From The Biblical Stories Series Chromogenic print 55 by 55 in. 140 by 140 cm Executed in 2006, this work is number 2 from an edition of 5 Est. $15/20,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 95 Property From The Estate Of Shlomo Moussaieff Simeon Solomon Carrying The Scrolls Of The Law signed with monogram and dated 1871 (lower left); inscribed "Rabbi Carrying the Law"/ by Simeon Solomon (on a label attached to the stretcher) oil on canvas 30 1/4 by 24 in. 77 by 61 cm. Est. $150/250,000
    Lot 95 Property From The Estate Of Shlomo Moussaieff Simeon Solomon Carrying The Scrolls Of The Law signed with monogram and dated 1871 (lower left); inscribed "Rabbi Carrying the Law"/ by Simeon Solomon (on a label attached to the stretcher) oil on canvas 30 1/4 by 24 in. 77 by 61 cm. Est. $150/250,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 97 Property From The Estate Of Shlomo Moussaieff A Magnificent Decorated Ketubbah, Livorno: 1698 Ink, gouache and copper-plate engraving on parchment (29 ½ x 20 in.; 750 x 508 mm). Framed. Celebrating the wedding of Abraham, the son of Jacob Lopez, to Dona Luna, the daughter of Davd Marini on Wednesday, 15th of Av, 5458 (=July 23, 1698)  Est. $50/70,000
    Lot 97 Property From The Estate Of Shlomo Moussaieff A Magnificent Decorated Ketubbah, Livorno: 1698 Ink, gouache and copper-plate engraving on parchment (29 ½ x 20 in.; 750 x 508 mm). Framed. Celebrating the wedding of Abraham, the son of Jacob Lopez, to Dona Luna, the daughter of Davd Marini on Wednesday, 15th of Av, 5458 (=July 23, 1698) Est. $50/70,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 55 Property From The Estate Of Shlomo Moussaieff Monumental Polish brass synagogue Hanukah lamp, circa 1890 baluster stem with large beaded borders, engine-turned panels, scrolling arms. height 72 in. 183 cm Est. $30/50,000
    Lot 55 Property From The Estate Of Shlomo Moussaieff Monumental Polish brass synagogue Hanukah lamp, circa 1890 baluster stem with large beaded borders, engine-turned panels, scrolling arms. height 72 in. 183 cm Est. $30/50,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 218 Evening Service of Roshashanah, and Kippur, or The Beginning of the Year, and The Day of Atonement [Isaac Pinto], New York: W. Weyman, 1761 Est. $180/240,000
    Lot 218 Evening Service of Roshashanah, and Kippur, or The Beginning of the Year, and The Day of Atonement [Isaac Pinto], New York: W. Weyman, 1761 Est. $180/240,000
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
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