Maurice Estève

(1904 - 2001)
Sans titre Réalisé en 1964
1904 Culan 2001
Signed and dated “Esteve 64” lower left
Watercolour and oil stick on paper
49 x 62 cm

Provenance:

Private Collection, France
Galerie Apllicat-Prazan, Paris
Christie’s Paris, 2010, Lot-Nr. 124
Art Cuellar-Nathan, Zürich

Exhibitions:

Michael Altman Fine Art Gallery, New York, In Pursuit of Timeless Quality, 2016.

Literature:

– Michael Altman Fine Art Gallery, New York, 15.04. 20.05. 2016, In Pursuit of Timeless Quality, (illustrated).

Maurice Estève’s creative production synthesised a range of styles that drew from his own personal experiences of working with textiles prior to painting, as well as the cultural phenomena taking place in the French art scene that he became an inextricable part of. While his early works are best described as illustrating a Cubist Fauvism, Estève’s mature style became heavily influenced by the developments of Orphism. Undoubtedly, working closely with Robert Delaunay as his assistant on the decorative panels for the 1937 Paris International Exhibition, also gave Delaunay further exposure to the visual language promoted by his contemporary. It was only after 1940 however, that Estève rejected formalism completely in favour of abstraction. Consequently, his stylized figures and forms were eradicated to give rise to fragmented pure colours and unadulterated shapes.

Painted in 1964, Sans Titre is a striking example of Estève’s abstract portfolio of works. The vivacious tangerine oranges, vibrant reds and earthy browns are juxtaposed with cool marine tones and inky greys. The piece is an orchestra of colour with carefully applied areas of paint forming a series of interlocking patterns and shapes. Rendered in a wet brush, the watercolours bleed into each other but equally show masterful constraint so that the measured composition remains balanced whilst the luminosity of the lighter tones are not spoiled.

‘These aquarelles are distinguished by a firmness of touch that renders them close to true painting and by consequence astounding. They are astounding because firmness and aquarelle are, in principle, mutually exclusive – except in the case of Estève, who has managed to harmonise them (…). Estève transforms water colours, an instrument for rapid expression into a slow and deliberate medium.’ (D. Vallier, Estève Aquarelle, Neue Galerie Dr. Peter Nathan, Zürich, 1973, p.12)

‘All my watercolours are ‘unique’ works in the sense that they are never sketches or studies made in preparation for a painting. They should be regarded as “paintings” in their own right, executed in watercolour instead of in oil. The same applies to the majority of my drawings, for, for some years past, I have ceased to make preliminary sketches, seeking, from the beginning of work on the canvas, drawing, form and colour, if I may say so, more or less simultaneously’ (R. Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery’s Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery, London 1981, pp. 211-12).

Thus, the watercolour presented here is a visually arresting composition that wonderfully articulates Estève’s sheer delight in working with colours and abstract forms.

Inv.Nr. 1276


Nature morte devant la fenêtre, Peint en 1942
Nature morte devant la fenêtre, Peint en 1942
Signé ‘Estève’ (en bas à gauche); signé, daté et titré ‘Estève 42 Nature morte devant la fenêtre’ (au revers)
huile sur toile
61 x 45 cm

Provenance:

Galerie de France, Paris.
Maurice Lefebvre-Foinet, Paris.
Puis par descendance au propriétaire actuel

Exhibitions:

Bâle, Kunsthalle; Dusseldorf, Kunsthalle; Copenhague, Statens Museum for Kunst et Oslo, Kunstnerness Hus, Estèves (Oeuvres 1919-1960), juin-décembre 1961

Literature:

R. Maillart et M. Prudhomme-Estève, Maurice Estève Catalogue Raisonné de l’oeuvre peint, Neuchâtel, 1995, p. 215, no. 183 (illustré en couleurs)

Inv 1236

 


Rue de Village, 194
Rue de Village, 194
signée en bas à droite Estève; contresignée, datée et titrée au dos Estève, 43, Rue de village
Huile sur toile
38 x 45,80 cm

Provenance:

Galerie Louis Carré, Paris Collection Edmond Masurel, Paris Galerie Louis Carré & Cie, Paris Collection Charles Aaron, Chicago

Literature:

Monique Prudhomme-Estève, Robert Maillard, Maurice Estève. Catalogue raisonné de l’oeuvre peint , Neuchâtel, 1955, illustré p.226, n°215

Inv 1325


Composition, 1968
1904 Culan 2001
Composition, 1968
Signé en bas à gauche: Estève 68
Aquarelle sur papier
50 x 65 cm

Provenance:

Galerie Louis Carré & Cie, Paris
Collection particulière
Art Cuéllar-Nathan, Zürich

Exhibitions:

FIAC 1978, stand Galerie Claude Bernard.
1986-1987, rétrospective Estève Grand Palais.

Inv.Nr. 1327



Rue de Village, 194
Rue de Village, 194
Signée en bas à droite Estève; contresignée, datée et titrée au dos Estève, 43, Rue de village
Huile sur toile
38 x 45,80 cm

Provenance:

Galerie Louis Carré, Paris Collection Edmond Masurel, Paris Galerie Louis Carré & Cie, Paris Collection Charles Aaron, Chicago

Literature:

Monique Prudhomme-Estève, Robert Maillard, Maurice Estève. Catalogue raisonné de l’oeuvre peint , Neuchâtel, 1955, illustré p.226, n°215

Inv.Nr. 1325


Sans titre Réalisé en 1968
Sans titre Réalisé en 1968
Signé et daté ‘Estève 68’ (en bas à droite)
Aquarelle sur papier
52 x 37 cm

Provenance:

Vente anonyme, Kunsthallen Kunstauktioner, Copenhague, 20 mai 1992, lot 25 Christie’s Paris 2010
Arturo Cuéllar, Zürich

Exhibitions:

Paris, FIAC, stand Claude Bernard, 1978

Cette oeuvre sera reproduite dans le catalogue raisonné des oeuvres sur papier de Maurice Estève, actuellement en préparation par Madame Monique Estève, sous le numéro A990.

Inv.Nr. 1273


 

Composition au pichet, Le verre blanc
Composition au pichet, Le verre blanc
Signé en bas à droite Estève
Signé et daté au dos Estève 1942
Huile sur toile d’origine
73 x 50 cm

Inv.Nr. 1334