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Impressionist 1Vincent van Gogh (1852-1890), ? ONE OF THE STARS IN A SALE THAT GROSSED $422,110,000 ?

November 4, 2014, saw the strongest effort to date by Sothebys at stemming the recent tide of sales figures in arch rival Christies favor. These works of art were tremendously impressive, and gave the preview gallery on the tenth floor a buzz not seen on a long time. The sale occurred Tuesday, November 4, 2014 at 7:00pm EST.

Impressionist 2Lot 8: Amedeo Modigliani (1884-1920), Tete, Stone, 28 inches tall Estimate upon Request (annoying I know, but that is Sothebys) SOLD FOR$63 MILLION HAMMER

Impressionist 3Lot 9: Camille Pissaro (1830-1903), Le Chou a Pontoise, 28 by 36 inches ?Estimate $1.2 to $1.8 million UNSOLD

 Impressionist 4Lot 10: Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Deux Hirondelles, 1932, 16 by 16 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $1.2 to $1.8 million $1.7 MILLION HAMMER

A rare decorative work by an artist who often intentionally detoured into the grotesque or horrific.

Impressionist 5Lot 12: Alfred Sisley (1839-1899), Le Long a Moret, 1883, 20 by 30 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $2 to $3 million $4.2 MILLION HAMMER

Impressionist 6Lot 17: Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890), Nature Morte, 1890, 26 by 20 inches, oil/canvas ?Estimate $30 to $50 million $55 MILLION HAMMER

It is rare to see any van Gogh of this quality on the market, in person it's color was so much stronger than the printed materials supplied by Sotheby's. Oddly enough the condition report did not mention the period impacted impasto the artist endowed his works with by rolling them up once dry. This sales price topped the high estimate.

Impressionist 7Lot 18: Gustave Caillebotte (1848-1894), Canotier sur L'Yesses, 1877, 32 by 26 inches, Pastel Estimate $1 to $1.5 million $950,000 HAMMER

Any painting by Caillebotte is better than none, even when it is a pastel that appears to be in less than perfect shape.

 Impressionist 8Lot 20: Claude Monet (1840-1926), Le Jardin de Vetheuil, 1881, 23 by 29 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $4 to $5 million $6.6 MILLION HAMMER

First of a fleet of Monet's to be sold, despite the lack of a figure, the conservative estimate helped on something offered at the right time in the right place.

Impressionist 9Lot 21: Paul Signac (1863-1935), Le Thonier entrant a La Rochelle (Couchant) Dated 1927, 28 by 36 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $3 to $5 million $3 MILLION HAMMER

Pointalism, even late is always desirable.

Impressionist 10Lot 23: Fernand Leger (1881-1955), Clowns et Chevaux, 1954, 47 by 61 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $3 to $5 million $5.1 MILLION HAMMER

Impressionist 11Lot 25: Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966), Chariot, 57 inches tall, painted Bronze Estimate upon Request, rumored to be upwards of $80 million $90 MILLION HAMMER

Highly important, the last related work sold for $100 million at auction.

Impressionist 12Lot 28: Claude Monet (1840-1926), Sous Les Peupliers, 1887, 28 by 36 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $12 to $18 million $18 MILLION HAMMER

Formerly owned by Bertha and Potter Palmer then the Art Institute of Chicago, it likely was a part of the World Columbian Expostion in 1893, otherwise known as the Great White City.

Impressionist 13Lot 29: Claude Monet (1840-1926), Alice Hoschede au Jardin, 1881, 31 by 25 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $25 to $35 million $30 MILLION HAMMER

The highest estimated Lot of the Monets, the "Woman in White" theme was popular in the art market of the Go-Go 1980's. Obviously a figure in his work elevates the price.

Impressionist 14Lot 30: Claude Monet (1840-1926), Eglise de Vernon, Soleil, 1894, 26 by 36 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $7 to $9 million $6.8 MILLION HAMMER

Impressionist 15Lot 52: Paul Gauguin (1848-1903), Les Mas, Environs d'Arles, 1888, 28 by 36 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $4 to $5 million $4.7 MILLION HAMMER

A sleeper of a Gauguin that dated to his trip south to Arles and van Gogh. This sold above low estimate despite not being fresh to the market.

 Impressionist 16Lot 54: Edouard Manet (1832-1883), Polichinelle, 1873, 19-7/8 by 13 inches, oil/canvas $1 to $1.5 million $3 MILLION HAMMER An absurd subject, but Manet is rare enough to take note.

 Impressionist 17Lot 55: Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Femme au col de Fourrure (Marie-Therese) ?Dated 4D37, 18 by 15 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $4 to $6 million $3.8 MILLION HAMMER

A strikingly decorative painting of Picasso's paramour and mother to his daughter. This work carried yet another conservative estimate, which may reflect an abundance of Picasso paintings currently on the market.


Despite being strategically placed by Sothebys well after the major one sold, $4 to $6 million seemed expensive for a work on paper from 1882 by the artist.

Impressionist 19Lot 57: Marc Chagall (1887-1985) La Mariee sur fond de la Tour Eiffel 1982, 24 by 19 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $1 to $1.5 million UNSOLD

1982 is pretty late even for Chagall.

Impressionist 20Lot 59: Pierre Auguste Renoir (1841-1919), Nature Morte, 12 by 17 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $1 to $1.5 million $920,000 HAMMER

Impressionist 222?Lot 62: Edvard Munch (1863-1944), Furuskog (Pine Forest), 1891, 23 by 28 INCHES, Oil/canvas Estimate $1 to $1.5 million UNSOLD

Impressionist 21Lot 63: Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Buffon et Jeune Acrobate, 1905, 23 by 18 inches, Gouache and charcoal on paper Estimate $2.5 to $3.5 million $5.2 MILLION HAMMER

Early and important, but somewhat NAMBLA strange in its subject matter, Picassos from this time period usually find a home at a high price. The browns in the paper indicate a work that is heavily acidified, possibly reversible by a good conservator.

 Impressionist 22Lot 74, Kees Van Dongen (1877-1968), Suzanne, 21 by 15 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $500,000 to $700,000 $450,000 HAMMER

Impressionist 23Lot 117: Louis Anquetin (1861-1932), L'Intérieur de chez Bruant: le Mirliton, 1886-87. 56 by 61 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $800,000–1,200,000 HAMMER PRICE $1,350,000.

Impressionist 24LOT 154: MARC CHAGALL (1887-1985), MARIES A L'ANGE ROUGE, 18 BY 10 INCHES, OIL/CANVAS Estimate $600,000 to $800,000 SOLD FOR $600,000 HAMMER

Scheduled for the following day sale of November 5, 2014, that shows the depth of the Sothebys offering. Usually a 1932 work by Chagall would be offered in prime-time. Perhaps the 1932 Lot above should have been put in Evening Sale instead of the 1982 example.

Click here to download complete results:

Christies Evening sale came a day later and despite the recent trend of surpassing Sothebys, it did not. The sale grossed $163,635,000 with one outstanding lot, an Eduoard Manet which sold for over $65 million.

Impressionist 25Eduoard Manet (1832-1883), Printemps, 1881, 29 by 20 inches, oil/canvas Estimate $25 to $35 million Sold for $65,125,000

The rest of the Christies Impressionist and Modern Painting results may be seen if you click here.

Alexander Boyle

About the Author

Robert Alexander Boyle

Robert Alexander Boyle

 Alexander Boyle is a graduate of Trinity College, Hartford, CT where he majored in History. Prior to graduation he co-authored the seminal book Acid Rain in 1983. Alex has worked for the Metropo...