Four hundred works presented in nearly 300 lots by Dada and Surrealist icon Man Ray will go under the hammer at Sotheby’s Paris on 15 November. This is the first opportunity in over twenty years to acquire works by Man Ray coming directly from the studio of the
artist, the artist’s estate. The collection includes works in all media: photographs, paintings, drawings, objects, jewellery, chess and film.
At the core of the sale is a group of over 191 lots of vintage photographs ranging from portraiture and fashion photography, including solarisation and gauze effects, to Surrealist compositions and iconic Man Ray photographs such as Magnolia Flower (1926), Starfish (1928), Ostrich Egg (1944) and Mathematical Object (1934).
The auction offers portraits of Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Juan Gris, Jean Cocteau, Francis Picabia, André Derain, Alberto Giacometti, Joan Miró, Erik Satie, Paul Eluard, Henry Miller in addition to a rich offering of self-portraits, many previously unpublished.
A number of intriguing Surrealist objects are being offered, including Man Ray’s legendary irrational and humorous object Ce que manque à nous tous, comprising a clay pipe with a glass bubble.
Also included are a number of items of Jewellery including a gold broach of the lips of Lee Miller, inspired by the artist’s celebrated painting Observatory Time (A l’heure de l’observatoire – les amoureux) (1932-34) and Man Ray’s earrings in the
form of unravelled lampshades, identical to those worn by Catherine Deneuve in Man Ray’s photograph for the cover page of The Observer Magazine (1975), a variant of this photograph of which is also included in the sale. Two chess sets, a large scale Chess Painting and numerous photographs of his chess sets and designs are also part of the sale.