2018-03-27-2018-12-18 --- 2018-12-18 13:33:16--18
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LOT :17
Basil Ivan Rákóczi (1908-1979)
Le Poete et le Taureau (1949)
Oil on canvas, 45 x 60cm (17¾ x 23½'')
Estimate EUR : €2,000.00 - €3,000.00
Auction Date : 27-03-2018


Basil Ivan Rákóczi (1908-1979)
Le Poete et le Taureau (1949)
Oil on canvas, 45 x 60cm (17¾ x 23½'')
Signed; inscribed with title and dated verso

Provenance: The artist's family by descent

Basil Rakoczi was living in a friends flat on Rue Gregoire de Tours VI in Paris when this oil was painted in the early spring of 1949. This was the first of a small series of paintings with the bull as a central focus. It followed his continued interests in ancient history and symbolism. The subject of bulls, for him, came from Mithraic history and culture where the slaying of these creatures was much featured. The poet in the painting is likely a reference to Statius, a Latin poet who first put Mithraic culture to verse. He sits alongside the calm bull, a reflection that words are more powerful than violence. Equally the painting continued the artists lifelong experimentation with colour, often breaking barriers with the extravagant use of bright or strong colours or both. Exemplifying this point, he wrote in his diary for the 9thMarch 1949: Up early and painted Le Poete et le toureau. Liberating purples and violets in oil.

Rakoczi was continuing to live with friends, in cheap hotels or studios in both Paris and on the south coast of France. He had done so since the end of the Second World War, a continued reaction of unsettledness following the loss of his dear friend and lover, Kenneth Hall. Despite his many moves of accommodation, his painting was prolific and he continued to explore different themes in his work, looking to bring in new ideas, as well as incorporating his love of bold colours.

Our thanks to Christopher Rakoczi for his help in cataloguing this and the previous two lots.


Hammer Price : €2,100.00
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