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Estimate: $ 15,000 - $ 25,000
ROMARE BEARDEN (1911 - 1988) Untitled (Bullfighter with Bull).
Watercolor, brush and ink on cream wove paper, circa 1945-6. 445x584 mm; 17 1/2x23 inches. Signed in ink, lower right.
Provenance: Bill Hodges Gallery, New York; private collection, New York.
This exquisite watercolor is a very scarce example of Romare Bearden's 1945-6 series of bullfighting and lamentation scenes. Bearden created some of his most vivid and modern compositions of the 1940s in this series. He was inspired by Federico García Lorca's 1935 four part poem Lament for the Death of a Bullfighter or Llanto por Ignacio Sánchez Mejías.
Bearden exhibited nine watercolors and twelve oil paintings from this series in a one person exhibiton at the Samuel M. Kootz Gallery from March 25 - April 13, 1946. Bearden had two other literary themed series in his post-war work, heroes of the Trojan war taken from Homer's Iliad and scenes of hunting and feasting from Rabelais' 16th Century satire Gargantua and Pantagruel. Another watercolor from this Lorca series is in the collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Schwartzman pp. 139-142; Fine pp. 17-18.