Daria Khristova nee Chernenko
L'Ecole de Paris / Léopold Survage (Russian, 1879-1968) La conque de mer
£40,000 - £60,000
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Galeria R. Rotta, Genova Italy (according to stamp on verso)
Rossini, Paris, 27 May 2008, lot 61
Survage was born in Moscow to a family who owned a piano factory. Survage's grandfather had founded the factory there after emigrating from Finland. Within this artistically inclined family, Survage preferred to pursue painting and enrolled in the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture at the age of twenty-two.
Survage had travelled to Paris in 1908 and shared a studio with Amedeo Modigliani and frequented the salons held at the home of Helen d'Otteingen where sculptors, writers and painters were welcomed, among them Pablo Picasso, Constantine Brancusi and Max Jacob. In 1910 he exhibited with the circle of avant-garde artists, Jack of Diamonds group, in Moscow. Survage was inspired by Matisse from the Shchukin Collection and was influenced by Cubism and Surrealism as well as the works of Cézanne, with whom he exhibited in the Salon des Indépendants in 1911.
In 1915 he left for the South of France. In Nice, as other artists had before him, he discovered with shock the beauty of Mediterranean light. This is evident in the present lot. The painting shows a man bringing a seashell to his ear and is being transported to the beautiful seacoast, listening to the sound of the morning ocean. Bathed in the coastal sunrise the gentleman appears to be within multiple perspectival and colour planes, creating cohesion and discontinuity simultaneously.