Eileen Kinsella has a nice story on Artnet News about a cache of Joan Miró works that were the property of a New York photographer and filmmaker’s daughter. Now her estate is selling the three works at Sotheby’s in a few weeks time:
[Nicholas] Bouchard, who had extensive experience photographing dancers and was credited with widening the audience for modern dance in the 1930s, had a solo exhibition of his photographs at the Brooklyn Museum in 1936–37. He filmed Miró for a project entitled “Around and About Joan Miró” including documenting the artist creating one of his paintings. Miró dedicated this work to Diane with an inscription that read: “to Diane Bouchard, with all my love.”
Not only is the video, a fascinating artifact in its own right, also serves as instant indisputable evidence that Miró created the work. According to the Sotheby’s catalogue, the authenticity of the work has been confirmed by A.D.O.M., the seven-member Association pour la Défense de l’œuvre de Joan Miró.
The painting, along with two others Miró gave to Bouchard, languished in a vault in New York for decades. That is until Sotheby’s senior vice president Elizabeth Gorayeb got a call from an estate representative following Diane Boucher’s death in March of 2013. Gorayeb says the representative knew there were works in the vault by artists Thomas Bouchard had filmed (he also shot Fernand Léger wandering through the New York and New Hampshire countryside gathering materials and ideas for his canvases), but didn’t know exactly what the works were. He “was unsure what we would be seeing, and did not have a sense of the value of these works,” recounts Gorayeb. Miró’s Untitled, 1947, painted on a rich blue background that “characterizes his most acclaimed works of this era,” according to the catalogue, was nothing short of a revelation.