Spectacular L’Espagnole by Natalia Goncharova at MacDougall’s


CONTEMPORARY RUSSIAN ART AUCTION Monday, 25 November 2019, 14:30

IMPORTANT RUSSIAN ART AUCTION Wednesday, 27 November, 2019, 10:30 Asia House, 63 New Cavendish St, London W1G 7LP

MacDougall’s is delighted to be able to present a highly significant example of Natalia Goncharova’s ‘Spanish Ladies’, one of the most celebrated themes within her entire œuvre, as part of the Important Russian Art Auction on 27 November.

Impressive in scale, standing life-size, the subject of L’Espagnole exhibits some of the most distinctive of Goncharova’s painterly skills, including her tendency to monumentality and sophisticated decoration. The depiction of the fabric on the shawl and the exquisitely rendered lace mantilla contrast to elegant effect with the flowering magnolias in the background, another one of Goncharova’s most essential motifs.

The Spanish theme first occurred to Goncharova in 1916 whilst she was working on designs for the ballets Triana and Spain for Sergei Diaghilev’s productions. In company with Diaghilev, Massine and Larionov, Goncharova journeyed around Spain and was instantly captivated by the magnificent architecture, rich costumes and warm light of the country, inspiring her to create some of her most visually striking and powerful works over the following years.

The appearance at auction of one of Goncharova’s Espagnole paintings of this calibre is an exceptionally rare event, and this is undoubtedly the best example to have been offered for sale in more than a decade. The stunning work was exhibited in a major exhibition at the State Russian Museum in 2003, Russian Paris, and comes from an important private European collection.