Following last November’s blow-out sale of works by Vincent van Gogh, $160 million in only four works by the artist were sold in the New York sales, Christie’s has announced a major landscape for the May sales. A similar view, of the the same field, is in the Kröller-Müller Museum, Otterlo. Christie’s has announced the work without an estimate but the whisper number is in the region of $45 million.
“With its gestural, expressive handling and bold, vibrant color,” says Vanessa Fusco, Co-Head of Christie’s New York 20th Century Evening Sale, “Champs près des Alpilles exemplifies the key characteristics of Van Gogh’s trademark style.”
Vincent van Gogh’s Champs près des Alpilles, 1889 is one of two canvases sent from the artist while living in an asylum in Saint-Rémy to his close friend Joseph Roulin in Marseille at the beginning of 1890.
Today, Roulin is one of the most recognizable models of the van Gogh’s career. The two had become friends in Arles. Van Gogh painted the postman and his family multiple times. Roulin provided key support to Van Gogh while he was in the hospital following his first major breakdown. When Van Gogh was living in Saint-Rémy he maintained a regular correspondence with Roulin. While in Saint-Rémy, Van Gogh’s mature style emerged.
Champs près des Alpilles will be on view along with selected highlights from the 20th Century / 21st Century Evening Sales in London from 23 February – 1 March, and subsequently tour to Taipei and Hong Kong before returning to New York, where it will be on exhibition at Christie’s New York ahead of the sale in May.