There are a number of undervalued artists receiving more attention in the market these days. The demand for abstract work from the middle of the 20th Century that might not have been as valued because of the shift from European to American artists has been particularly acute. That backdrop makes the appearance of this Pierre Soulages painting from 1959 such a potential market mover. Peinture 186 x 143 cm, 23 décembre 1959 will be offered at Christie’s this November with an estimate of $10-15m.
That low estimate would put the painting’s sale more than 50% higher than Soulages’s current record price of $6.9m set last year. That record work had a distinctive blue tinge. Chalk up the aggressive pricing to this work’s distinctive coal-hearth red glow and the fact the work was bought directly from the artist before being sold to the current owner. That’s about as ‘fresh-to-market’ as one could hope nearly sixty years later.