Dina Vierny art collection to auction for first time

Sotheby's and Artcurial will offer 10 historic works from the private collection of Dina Vierny, the esteemed artist's model, dealer and collector.

Dina Vierny Maillol
Maillol found his perfect muse in Dina Vierny

The collection comes to auction for the first time following Vierny's death in 2009, with her sons parting with 10 works by Matisse, Maillol, Dufy, Bulatov and Kabakov. Leading bids on December 2 in Paris will be Maillol's La  Riviere at $2.7m-4.1m.

Vierny was born in 1919 to a Jewish family in Moldova, but moved to Paris in 1925. It was here at the age of 15 that she met the 73-year-old sculptor Aristide Maillol.

In Vierny, Maillol had discovered his perfect muse, and their collaboration led to Dina becoming the key figure in his work between 1935 and 1944. There are now over 35 sculptures of Vierny by Maillol, with dozens of drawings and a number of paintings.

Maillol La Riviere
La Riviere is one of Maillol's most famous works, with this example placed outside New York's Museum of Modern Art

Through her connections in the art world and Maillol, Dina also became close friends with Henri Matisse, Raoul Dufy and Pierre Bonnard, with four ink drawings by Matisse and a portrait by Dufy included in the sale.

The sale will also feature works that were acquired after Vierny, encouraged by Matisse, opened her Paris gallery in 1947. She showed a range of works at the gallery, but is particularly known for championing the Russian avant-garde, helping artists such as Erik Bulatov and Ilya Kabakov to leave the USSR.

Bulatov's 1992 painting La Liberte will sell with a $828,000-1.1m estimate.

Vierny's collection didn't stop at art, with her rare dolls and automata selling for $4.7m at Sotheby's in 1996.

Paul Fraser Collectibles has some superb art collectibles for sale, such as letters from Renoir and Monet and a postcard from Picasso.


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