London – Picasso Ceramics, an online-only sale of ceramics that exude Pablo Picasso’s celebrated joie de vivre, is live for bidding from 10 - 22 September 2021. Expressed through the artist’s characteristically energetic colours and playful forms, these whimsical works celebrate an unrivalled period in Picasso’s career. Following the uncertainty of the war years, the artist revelled in his newfound zest for life, absorbing and delighting in the light, colour and deep-seated traditions of the South of France which re-energised his work.
Highlights include Tarasque (A.R. 247) (1954, estimate: £50,000-80,000) which is executed in a limited edition of 50 examples. The work is based on a fearsome mythological creature found in medieval poetry and illuminated manuscripts. The beast was said to have had poisonous breath that could kill its victims. Picasso exuberantly portrays this mythical beast and includes as the neck of the work a tower with small human figures hiding from the Tarasque’s wrath.
Taureau (A.R. 255) (1955, estimate: £60,000-80,000) is another expression of the artist’s ingenious exploration of playful forms at the time. It humorously depicts a sinuous and virile bull, the archetypal figure with whom Picasso identified, and a lively reference to his Spanish heritage.
Another coveted work in the sale is the Vase aztèque aux quatre visages (A.R. 402) (1957, estimate: £55,000-75,000), a sophisticated ceramic that imaginatively references Pre-Columbian motifs.
This auction follows the hugely successful Picasso Ceramics online sale held at Christie’s New York in May, where 90% of lots sold above high estimate and 3 lots sold above $200,000 hammer. Highlights from the Picasso Ceramics sale will be on view at Christie’s headquarters in London as part of the pre-sale exhibition from 10 to 22 September 2021.