Sotheby's November auction of 19th Century European Art is a select offering of outstanding works by some of the most important and popular artists in the collecting category. Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema's The Finding of Moses is a visual tour de force, a vibrant and theatrical interpretation of a well-known biblical story. Ludwig Deutsch's The Inspection showcases the artist's tremendous technical skill and fascination with Eastern visual culture, while Jean-Léon Gérôme's After the Bath features an iconic nude in an intimate and evocative setting. Jozef Brandt's powerful Zaporozcy, painted in 1893 at the height of the artist's career, is a dynamic scene of a horse sale taking place in a seventeenth century Cossack military camp. William Bouguereau's monumental Frère et Soeur is a classic example of the artist's work, featuring a young peasant girl and her sibling, a popular theme within the artist's oeuvre. Two works by Jean Béraud each demonstrate a particular approach to rendering Parisian life; Place de l'Europe is strikingly modern in its perspective and palette, and Avenue Parisienne is a colorful glimpse of the bustling boulevards. Jean-François Millet's recently discovered Le grand frère reveals the artist's incredible skill in the pastel medium, while Jules Dupré's rare and ambitious Environ de Southampton is a benchmark example of French landscape painting. Giovanni Boldini's distinctive and bravado approach to portraiture is aptly conveyed in both his Portrait of Giovinetta Errazuriz and his Portrait of the Artist Lawrence Alexander ("Peter") Harrison. Sir Alfred Munnings' charming Portrait of Miss Patricia Grace on a Pony displays the artist's signature style in rendering his patrons and their beloved animals.
«Trois opérations : Voir, opération de l’œil. Observer, opération de l’esprit. Contempler, opération de l’âme. Quiconque arrive à cette troisième opération entre dans le domaine de l’art.» Emile Bernard