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John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 1
John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 2
John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 3
John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 4
Thumbnail of John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 1
Thumbnail of John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 2
Thumbnail of John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 3
Thumbnail of John Koch (American, 1909-1978) Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in. image 4
Lot 75
John Koch
(American, 1909-1978)
Manuscript I 36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm) framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in.
25 January 2023, 12:00 EST
Skinner Marlborough, Massachusetts

Sold for US$176,775 inc. premium

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John Koch (American, 1909-1978)

Manuscript I
signed 'Koch' (lower left), titled on a label from Kraushaar Galleries, New York (affixed to a fragment of old frame backing now affixed to the current frame backing along with a partial label from Kraushaar Galleries)
oil on canvas
36 x 54 in. (91.5 x 137.2 cm)
framed 41 1/2 x 59 1/2 in.

Footnotes

Provenance
Collection of the artist
Collection of a gentleman, New York
John Pence Gallery, San Francisco
Private collection (acquired from the above, 1994)

N.B.
John Koch spent several years in the late 1920s and early 1930s living in Paris, copying Old Master works in the Louvre, exhibiting at the Salons, and socializing with avant-garde artists and writers including André Gide, André Malraux, and Jean Cocteau. Despite a few attempts at incorporating Surrealist themes into his own work, Koch did not stray far from his primary interest in realism. Upon returning to the U.S. and settling in New York City, Koch found financial success as a portrait painter, while also working on elegant, meticulously detailed interior scenes involving seemingly complex, enigmatic social interactions. Koch used his own apartment as the setting for most of these intimate domestic compositions, with his furniture and decorative objects as the recurring props. The sculptural lamp occupying the upper left of this composition appears in at least two other paintings. Koch's attention to objects, set and figure arrangement, cropping, and lighting creates a dynamic tension that draws a viewer into the ungraspable narrative.

Additional information