Lot 223
Nineteenth Century & Early Modern Art | 18 November 2021
Raoul Dufy (1877-1953)

Marine au Havre

signed 'Raoul Dufy' (lower right)

watercolour and gouache on paper, 49,5x64,5 cm
Executed circa 1928.

-With Kunsthandel Frans Jacobs Fine Art, Amsterdam.

Accompanied by a photo-certificate from Ms. Fanny Guillon-Laffaille dated, Paris le 21 October 1998, Certificat no. A98-1160.

The present lot will be included in the supplement of the 'Catalogue raisonné des aquarelles, gouaches et pastels de Raoul Dufy' in preparation by Ms. Fanny Guillon-Laffaille.

Raoul Dufy was born in Le Havre, in 1877. Our present watercolour is a superb example of Dufy’s favourite subject - his hometown. While many of his Fauves peers went to the South of France, Dufy chose to remain in his native Normandy. Le Havre - with its harbour, its quays, the beach of Sainte-Adresse and the boats - has always been a source of inspiration for the French artist; a subject that he constantly revisited throughout his career. Painted in 1928, the present watercolour depicts the raised wooden walkway along the coast of Le Havre and the elegantly dressed bathers strolling along the jetty. While the posture and gestures of the bathers are rendered by the artist with great spontaneity, the swirling curves of the clouds and the waves are captured in a series of fluid, loose brushstrokes, giving an impression of lightness to the whole composition.

Through Dufy’s palette and technique, the influence of Fauvism is undeniable. To obtain this effect of light and transparency, Dufy intentionally left the paper blank in some places. The use of Prussian blue - embellished by hues of green, grey, ochre, and brown – is characteristic of the artist's blue period. This particular choice of blue has been explained by Dufy himself: “Blue is the only colour which keeps its own individuality across the spectrum. Take blue with its different nuances, from the darkest to the lightest; it will always be blue, whereas yellow darkens in shadow and fades out in lighter parts, dark red becomes brown and when diluted with white, it isn't red anymore, but another colour: pink" (quoted in P. Courthion, Raoul Dufy, Geneva, 1951, p. 52).

With the vibrant palette and the swirling curves characteristic of his style, Dufy conveyed with this atmospheric watercolour a cheerful depiction of Le Havre.

For this artist resale right is applicable from €2400 hammer price onwards

€ 25.000,00
€ 35.000,00
€ 26.000,00

Hamerprijs: € 26.000