At the Hotel Martinez in Cannes, it took all of four days to sell the lots in sessions mainly dedicated to Old Masters, modern art and jewelry.
Jean Dufy (1888-1964), Stockholm, le port (The Port in Stockholm), c. 1953-1954, oil on canvas signed, 50 x 61 cm/19.7 x 24 in (detail).
This joyous view of the port in Stockholm captured on canvas (50 x 61 cm/19.7 x 24 in) by Jean Dufy in around 1953-1954, brought good luck to this major Cannes sale. Standing out from a well-chosen selection of 20th-century works, the painting—characteristic of Dufy's work on European and American ports—finally fetched €69,000. It has the reference B 730 in the catalogue raisonné compiled by Jacques Bailly. By the same artist, Calèches et cavaliers au bois de Boulogne (Horsemen and Carriages in the Bois de Boulogne (46.5 x 65.5 cm/18.3 x 25.8 in), c. 1950, a work equally full of stylized figures (no. B 393 in the catalogue raisonné), garnered €66,500. Meanwhile, the Old Masters included a landscape by Camille Corot, entitled Trois personnages au marais (Three Figures in the Marsh), from around 1865-1870. The painting (25 x 33 cm/9.8 x 13 in) sold for €46,350, and is listed in the fifth supplement to Corot's work by Robaut and Moreau-Nélaton (Paris, 1905).
The sculptures included a striking Rhinocéros bleu (Blue Rhinoceros) spawned by the fertile imagination of François-Xavier Lalanne. This 1981 bronze with a blue enamel patina signed with his initials, numbered "72/150", edited by Artcurial (25 x 55 x 15 cm/9.8 x 21.7 x 5.9 in), bounded up to €56,500. But the real surprise here came with Fernand Bielle's decorated door with two leaves (inspired by those of the Baptistery in Florence). Made between 1940 and 1945 by this Bayonne silversmith and engineer, the 240 x 162 cm/94.5 x 63.8 in. ensemble is decorated with chased bands in the round depicting the main scenes in Christ's life, mostly in silver and vermeil on a lapis lazuli background. This impressive piece found a buyer at €72,800.