Poise, a work by John Duncan Fergusson that has not been seen in public for almost 100 years, will sell at Christie's on November 19 in London.
The work is emblematic of Fergusson's work at the time of its creation (1916) and was one of the highest valued pieces in his exhibition at the Connell Gallery in 1918. It is now expected to sell for £80,000-120,000 ($126,760-191,500).
Fergusson (1874-1961) was one of the leading Scottish colourists. Having mixed with renowned names such as Picasso and Matisse in Paris during the early part of the 20th century, he was regarded as being at the forefront of modern British painting.
However, his career was interrupted by the first world war, and he didn't see his first solo exhibition until 1923. In 1940 he founded the New Art Club in Glasgow, and became the first president of the New Scottish Group of painters.
As Christie's states, Poise is a scene of graceful elegance, showing a departure from his elaborately decorated early works with simplified lines that recall the work of Matisse.
Fergusson had returned from Paris in 1914, and this was part of a series of portraits he embarked on showing a more mature and restrained style.
The present owners are siblings who discovered the work while clearing their parents' house in Giverny, France, the famous village that Claude Monet called home. Acquaintances of Monet, it is likely they acquired the work after a number of artists flocked to the region inspired by the impressionist's famous works.
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