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Country Life Every Week - - Art Market -

The ‘Mod­ern’ in the col­lec­tion was rep­re­sented by sev­eral small sculp­tures of heads, in­clud­ing a bronze of Dalí by Arno Breker (£21,250) and sev­eral by Pablo Gar­gallo (1881–1934).

One of the best­known pho­to­graphs by Man Ray is Le Vi­olon d’in­gres, a woman’s back sug­gest­ing one of In­gres’s bathers, but marked with the f-holes of a vi­o­lin. The model whose cur­va­ceous back it was was Kiki, the Queen of Mont­par­nasse, who had been born il­le­git­i­mate and in poverty as Alice Prin in 1901 and be­came the spirit of he­do­nis­tic Paris in the 1920s. A night­club singer, ac­tress, writer and painter, she was model and muse to dozens of Mont­par­nasse artists, in­clud­ing Sou­tine, Picabia, Cocteau, Breker, Gar­gallo, Calder and Kis­ling as well as Man Ray.

Her phi­los­o­phy was sim­ple: ‘All I need is an onion, a bit of bread, and a bot­tle of red; and I will al­ways find some­body to of­fer me that.’

Per­haps more fa­mous than her back was her bob, which en­thused sculp­tors at the time and might well have in­spired Mary Quant and Vi­dal Sas­soon in the 1960s and, along with her black stock­ings and garters, Liza Min­nelli in Cabaret.

In 1953, she suc­cumbed to drink and drugs. Her fu­neral, in Mont­par­nasse, nat­u­rally, was as much an artis­tic and social event as her life and she is fit­tingly com­mem­o­rated in the daylily Kiki de Mont­par­nasse.

Gar­gallo’s 103 ∕8in-high bronze with gold-patina head is flat­tened and sim­pli­fied, as with a por­trait draw­ing by Matisse or a Fougasse car­toon. Es­sen­tially, it is one eye, half a nose and mouth—and the bob. The ex­am­ple in the col­lec­tion was cast be­fore 1930 (above). It sold for £341,000 against a £120,000 es­ti­mate. An­other ex­am­ple is in the Lou­vre. course, a car­doon, is dated 1625 and shows his mas­tery of com­po­si­tion, light, shade and tex­ture.

An­tiq­uity in the col­lec­tion was best rep­re­sented by a late-4th­cen­tury-bc Apu­lian red-fig­ure vo­lute krater (Fig 3) and a pair of 3rd-cen­tury-bc Etr­uscan fig­ures also prob­a­bly from south­ern Italy. The 28in-high krater, at­trib­uted to a dec­o­ra­tor known as the Ganymede Painter, showed fig­ures bear­ing of­fer­ings, in one case, a goose. It made £25,000, well over es­ti­mate.

Fig 3: Late-4th cen­tury-bc 28in red-fig­ure vo­lute krater by the Ganymede Painter. £25,000

Fig 5: A 10th-cen­tury Umayyad mar­ble cap­i­tal from Mad­i­nataz-zahra. £47,500

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