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Price Realized: $25,000 With Buyer's Premium Show Hammer Price
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Sale 2482 Lot 12
JOHN SINGER SARGENT
Head of a Young Girl.
Pencil on cream wove paper on tan card stock mount, circa 1875-78. 160x155mm; 6 1/4x6 1/8 inches. Signed in pencil, upper left recto.
Sold Sotheby's, London, March 5, 1930, lot 115; L. Crispin Warmington, London; sold Sotheby's, London, March 28, 1972, lot 4; Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd., London, with the original label on the frame back; private collection, Philadelphia, thence by descent; private collection, New York.
This drawing will be incuded in the forthcoming John Singer Sargent catalogue raisonné by Richard Ormond and Elaine Kilmurray, New York.
Sargent (1856-1925) was born in Florence, Italy, to American ex-patriates who encouraged his artistic pursuits from a young age. After studying with the German-American artist Carl Welsch in Rome and later at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence, he moved to Paris to train with the renowned portraitist Carolus-Duran (1837-1917). In addition to studying with Carolus-Duran, as well as Léon Bonnat (1833-1922), Sargent enrolled in the École des Beaux-Arts in 1874, where he studied drawing, with an emphasis on anatomy and perspective.
Training in both a traditional academic setting and the progressive atelier of Carolus-Duran, which encouraged use of the alla prima method of applying oil paint to a previously-painted wet surface, Sargent developed a painterly style known for its characteristic flourishes of color. This freer approach to formal rendering, in which gestural bruststrokes and strong colors present a momentary impression of the artist's initial perception, also persists in his drawings.
These characteristics are manifest in the current lot. The subject is depicted frontal, her face sensitively modeled with pale tones and subtle shading. Her hair is sketched with sure pencil strokes that create sharp contrasts of dark areas against bright highlights, and the bow worn around her neck is similar in appearance to those worn by the subjects in Sargent's Harriet Louise Warren, 1877, and Emily Sargent, 1877. Sargent's free and gestural use of line and shading captures the fleeting appearance, as well as the inner emotional state, of the sitter.
Estimate $15,000 - 20,000Price Realized (with Buyer's Premium) $25,000