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The left behind French artists which found favour with collectors

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« Carrés concentriques », gouache sur papier, 1958, de Vera Molnar. “Concentric squares “, gouache on paper, 1958, of Vera Molnar. Courtesy Galerie Oniris – Rennes

Made in France. This slogan cocardier, which converts to today consumers because of ethical or practical, has long appeared moved in an art world resistant to borders. Pis, that’s still ten years, it was not recommended to buy the French artists of the 1950s and 1960s. Too cheesy, too little known abroad. For the past five years, however, a replay work has allowed you to upgrade some, such as Martin Barré, Hans Hartung, or Pierre Soulages, and the prices of their works have risen sharply.

Less mired in old debates ideological-aesthetic, younger galleries view with curiosity these decades once disparaged. “As soon as one reads the intentions and methodologies specific to each artist, it becomes very interesting, note the gallerist Jocelyn Wolff. Today, we have certainly to learn this art, existential crisis, one of those artists that support the negativity. “

Behind the first rope team praised by the market, there are many other names that deserve to be rediscovered. “350 artists lived in those years of painting in Paris, but, for the vast majority of the train is past, admits to the dealer paris Franck Prazan. Attention must be paid to the artists who have had success in the past, and for which the volume of works available is sufficient. “

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This is the case of Jean Degottex, which was, with Georges Mathieu, one of the leaders of thread of lyrical abstraction, before to slide towards a style more sleek. “It is always questioned, has changed a lot and his work is more diverse than that of Mathieu and Soulages “, observes Pierre-Henri Benhamou, co-director of the parisian gallery ETC, which would present in march his series of Reports in a range between 30 000 and 250 000 euros. At the fair gallery owners, in 2019, this brand showcased its designs at around 12 000 euros.

“There are all the ingredients for the price of Degottex continue to move forward : a critical mass of large-scale works, a series of very distinct and an aesthetic that fits the taste of the day, expressive but in a minimalist black-and-white,” observes Paul Nyzam, a specialist at Christie s. in Front of one of his paintings, it is not projected in the living room of our grandparents, but in a contemporary spirit. “

Its record price of 245 000 euros dates back to the time in 2007. But for Stefano Moreni, vice-president of Sotheby’s France, ” very often, to move a market, there has to be a major work so, which allows the collectors to be aware of the importance of an artist “. This is done : by December 2018, the two works have won more than 130 000 euros as well at Christie’s as at Artcurial.

The women of honour

The focus should especially be on women of the 1950s, marginalized by their peers, and which the Musée Soulages, Rodez makes a just tribute until 10 may. Although defended by the Galerie de France, the Hungarian Judit Reigl was a long time in the shadow of his compatriot Simon Hantaï. That’s still fifteen years old, his prices are plafonnaient around 20 000 euros. For the past five years however, a revival is in the works, culminating in 2016, as the record price of 411 000 euros at Sotheby’s for a work of 1955.

Troisième étude pour « Effet esthétique de l’inversion des fonctions par la fluctuation de l’attention », gouache sur papier, 1960, de Vera Molnar. Third study for ” aesthetic Effect of the inversion of functions by the fluctuation of attention “, gouache on paper, 1960, of Vera Molnar. Courtesy Galerie Oniris – Rennes

Jocelyn Wolff is, itself, attached to the work of Colette Brunschwig, of which it proposes works between 2 000 and 40 000 euros. “This is the prototype of the artist-intellectual who paints, draws, writes and thinks,” he says. His work makes the connection between a metaphysical jewish, the modern abstraction and a thought of nothingness that she is looking for in the ancient China. “His colleague Bertrand Grimont has, on its side, with a passion for the abstract paintings by Geneviève Claisse, composed of circles and triangles bright colors, it shows between 5 000 and 80 000 euros. On his side, Diane Lahumière, whose family gallery specializes in geometric abstraction, defends the work that is eminently subtle, Marcelle Cahn.

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Another figure to rediscover, Vera Molnar, 96 years old, a pioneer of digital art whose work is rigorous but sensitive to begin to be celebrated by museums. “His works of the 1950s are sought after today because they lay the intellectual foundations of his approach with the computer at the end of the 1960s,” explains Florent Paumelle, director of the galerie rennes Oniris, which presents the drawings of this period between 13 000 and 20 000 euros.

One last tip : be interested in the graphic production, abundant but still neglected, of the most famous artists of the 1950s. It is so beautiful blotters Jean Fautrier between 5 000 and 10 000 euros and charcoal drawings of Nicolas de Staël between 20 000 and 40 000 euros. “The price difference between their drawings and paintings is sometimes from 1 to 10, note Franck Prazan. It is better to buy a very beautiful drawing of the good years that a painting of late of average quality. “