Lot 18
Indonesian Art Auction | 24 November 2022
Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur de Merprès (1880-1958)

A portrait of Ni Pollok with hibiscus

signed 'J. Le Mayeur' (lower right)

coloured chalks and charcoal on paper, 46,5x62,5 cm. In authentic frame, made by Le Mayeur's own woodcarver

Literature: -Paul de Bont, 'Bali in the 1930s, 'Photographs and Sculptures by Arthur Fleischmann', Wijk en Aalburg 2007, ill. p. 20.

-Collection Mr Van den Boogaard, The Hague, thence by descent to his daughter from whom acquired by Paul de Bont in 2006.

Accompanied by a postcard of Le Mayeur to Mr and Mrs Van den Boogaard, dated 19-12-57, wishing them a merry Christmas and happiness and health for the year 1958.

Mr and Mrs Van den Boogaard were friends with Le Mayeur and Pollok. During WWII, Van den Boogaard supplied paint materials to Le Mayeur. He also hid paintings and drawings by Le Mayeur during that period. In gratitude, the painter gifted this drawing to Van den Boogaard.

Paul de Bont was very keen to acquire the present lot since it is the drawing his mother wanted to buy from the artist in the late 40s. His father however did not want to pay the asking price of Dfl. 500 at that time. Instead, the drawing was offered to Mr Van den Boogaard as a token of their friendship.

On October 29th 2021, Paul de Bont passed away. He was a beloved and loyal visitor and advocate of our Indonesian art auctions.

Paul de Bont was born in 1948 in Denpasar; his father was employed by what later was to become the Royal Shell Oil Company. De Bont had developed an avid interest in Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur de Merprès and his wife Pollok, a legendary legong dancer. Paul’s mother and Pollok met each other around the time of his birth which was the prelude to and great stimulus for his fascination with this elegant Balinese dancer.

His passion for Pollok inspired him to publish a book with beautiful photographs of her: ‘Pollok. Hemelnimf en hibiscus aan de lagune. Van legong-danseres tot schildersmodel’, published in 1992. It didn't stop there; in 2007 he published 'Bali in the 1930s, photographs and sculptures by Arthur Fleischmann'. During his research, Paul learned that Joy Fleischmann, the widow of Arthur, possessed numerous photographs taken by her late husband.

In the beginning of this century, de Bont corresponded with Mrs Fleischmann, which eventually led to visiting her in London. Here, he learnt of Fleischmann’s uncompleted manuscript, in which he had documented the life, customs, and beauty of the Balinese people in more than 1800 pictures. De Bont was determined that the artist’s legacy could not simply be left unattended, and something had to be done to reveal this hidden treasure. To honour Fleischmann’s dedication, sections of his original script are presented in Paul de Bont’s book, with the finest photos from his collection.

On 7 November 2014, Paul de Bont delivered a well-attended lecture prior to our auction viewing days on Pollok and Le Mayeur. Previously, Paul delivered several lectures on Pollok for the Hague Pasar Malam Besar (since 2009 renamed Tong Tong Fair).

Twenty-five years after his first publication, in 2017, Paul de Bont wrote the chapter "Le Mayeur, a famous Pollok Duo-Painting" in "Transcultural Expressions Tahiti-Bali" edited by Philippe Augier and published by Museum Pasifika, Bali.

As well as this present lot, Paul de Bont collected Balinese wooden sculptures and silverwork. That part of his collection will be auctioned in February 2023.

Voor deze kunstenaar is volgrecht van toepassing vanaf een hamerprijs van € 2400.

€ 10.000,00
€ 15.000,00