The Artcurial auction house found at auction on December 15 a painting by Claude Nougaro, “Naked woman”, produced in 1957. This pastel, rich in details and symbols, is estimated at € 2,500. But he could go to a lot more.
How did this painting come to you?
It was a Parisian art lover who sympathized with me. For several years, he had had at home this painting entitled “Naked Woman”. He decided to part with it after having read through the catalog of the first sale in 2015 at Artcurial of the drawing (oil and felt pen on canvas) by Nougaro entitled “Self-portrait” made in 1996 and sold for € 9,000 in just a few minutes. minutes.
This drawing also had a moving story …
Absoutely. It was made by the artist during the Rencontres de Maubourguet, an annual event that attracted athletes and artists to this village in the Hautes-Pyrénées. Claude Nougaro was completing his convalescence there after a serious heart attack. He had painted this picture for an entire night in front of the public picturing himself with a bull’s head and a bow tie. On the back of the painting was pasted the first page of the Dépêche du Midi with the front page on Nougaro and his work. December 15 is therefore our second sale around the work of Claude Nougaro.
Describe to us the pastel of the naked woman
It is a 65 x 50.5 cm pastel, gouache and pencil on card stock, estimated at € 2,000-2,500 but which can go for a lot more. Produced in 1957 by the singer-songwriter, it is teeming with details and symbols such as this bull’s head in a corner of the canvas, which discreetly represents him. A painting in multiple colors, determined by a certain force in the drawing. A work in which everyone can interpret, according to their imagination, all the characters circling around this naked woman.
“Along with his talents as a singer-songwriter, Claude Nougaro possessed real know-how for painting. “
We know less about the painter and designer aspect of this immense artist. Were both of her activities important in her life?
Along with his talents as a musician, Claude Nougaro possessed real know-how as a designer. A practice which also nourished his music. His wife Hélène also recalls his comments on the subject: “Painting is music for the eyes. It obeys the same laws as music. A painter in front of his canvas becomes the conductor of the colors, his wand, directing brush, embodying the deep forces of the score… ”. He also said: “When I stop music, I will start drawing very strongly.” Even if everyone knew that they had a visceral need for the stage and that it was on returning from a concert late at night that he was drawing while listening to music that he then defined as “a parallel frolic”.
Through drawing, he transcribed his words, his dreams and his winks on canvases, restaurant tablecloths, small notebooks. He drew portraits with large black lines. A work directly inspired by his idol, Picasso and which allows to have another vision on this artist. Another expression of his talent.
How many works, between paintings and drawings, has he produced?
About 200 works brought together in particular by the Claude Nougaro association in Toulouse which also includes many notebooks. An association which in 2006 had also presented the exhibition “And here I am” at the Maison de Midi-Pyrénées. It should be remembered that it is quite rare to find works by the artist on the art market. When it does, it’s a real event that fans of the poet usually don’t miss. So we think we have a lot of public at this sale on December 15th.
Is it a highlight for an auctioneer?
Yes. It’s not every day that we come across at auction a work by a major artist from his city, adored by the people of Toulouse and whom many remember with emotion.
The auction will take place on Wednesday December 15 at 2:30 p.m. at Artcurial, Salle des Sales Urbain Vitry (6, rue Urbain Vitry) in Toulouse. The exhibition is visible on Tuesday, December 14 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Info: [email protected] – toulouse.com
Along with Claude Nougaro’s canvas, this sale reveals other wonders: furniture, silverware, books and paintings. As examples, a sculpture of Zadkine in bronze and patina. An acrylic canvas signed by the painter – engraver Jean Helion, “Les Mannequins soldés”. Without forgetting the sculpture “Vanity with butterflies”, Chapelle d’Ambrose.