Nicolas DE STAËL (1914-1955)

Other possible identifications: after, manner, attributed

Born in Russia, Nicolas de Staël (1913-1955) studied in Brussels and spent most of his life in France.

His career spanned fifteen years (from 1940 to 1955), covering more than a thousand works influenced by Cézanne, Van Gogh and the Fauves, but also by Dutch masters like Rembrandt or Vermeer. Known for his landscapes oscillating between figuration and abstraction, de Staël applies superimposed blocks of saturated and thick colors directly with a knife. He saw painting as an outlet, a release from his anxieties and emotions. Ferociously independent by nature, de Staël remained a stranger to the Salons and kept away from anything that could lock him into an interpretation, a current, a box, a position that he shared with his close friend, Georges Braque. His heterogeneous style, which he describes as “continuous evolution”, has repeatedly created surprises, especially with the Footballeurs series, whose impressive format (Les Footballeurs, 201 x 351 cm), exceeded $ 22m in October 2019 at Christie’s Paris .


“The inspiration I have followed finds its only source in nature… and its preferred mode of expression is lyricism.” Chu Teh-Chun The poet of pictorial abstraction Chu Teh-Chun would have been 100 years old this year and current tributes are – like his work – grandiose! To mark the occasion, a new documentary film retracing […]

Extraordinary Cimabue discovery… “Proud as the century in which he lived, he (Cimabue) perfectly depicted the faces of the people that populate his works, especially those of the elderly, portraying them in a strong and sublime manner that later artists were unable to capture”. (L. Lanzi, Storia pittorica della Italia). CIMABUE (c.1240/50-c.1302) on sale at […]

Over the last couple of weeks, Post-War and Contemporary art has generated very good auction results in Paris. The French ‘stars’ of the market like Nicolas de Stael, Pierre Soulages and the German-French artist Hans Hartung all performed well, while the Sino-French artists posted superb results having become increasingly attractive to international collectors. Christie’s owes […]

In Artprice’s fortnightly series of auction rankings identifying the Art Market’s primary trends, this week’s Friday Top looks at Christie’s best results in the first quarter of 2019. The world’s most powerful art auctioneer (with a global turnover of nearly $5 billion from Fine Art in 2018) just keeps on generating extraordinary results. Two years […]

An astonishing start to the new auction season in London has brought the vibrant Contemporary Art market back into the limelight. During the first fifteen days of October, London was the centre of the art world, with top-level events including Frieze London, Frieze Masters and the high-quality and eclectic Design fair, PAD. The city also […]

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