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Царь Соломон
1923

С.Н.Рерих. Царь Соломон. 1923

Ссылка на изображение: http://gallery.facets.ru/pic.php?id=3237&size=3

        
Атрибуты картины

Название Царь Соломон
Год 1923
Где находится Частная коллекция. Россия. Москва
Материалы, размеры Картон, темпера или оргалит, масло, темпера, уголь. 96.5 х 63.5 см.
Источник Каталоги аукционов Bonham's http://www.bonhams.com/
Примечание Загружено 3 изображения. Картина участвовала в аукционе Bonham's London 1.12.2010 и 30.11.2011. Картина участвовала в 41-ом Российском Антикварном Салоне 15-23.10.2016.

PROVENANCE и др. информация

https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/17862/lot/61/

Lot 61*

(N/A) SVETOSLAV NIKOLAEVICH ROERICH

(Russian, 1904-1993)

King Solomon, 1923 (recto) and Falcon Hunt (verso); a double-sided painting

£ 300,000 - 400,000

RUB 26,000,000 - 35,000,000

AMENDED

THE RUSSIAN SALE

1 Dec 2010, 10:00 GMT

LONDON, NEW BOND STREET

LOT DETAILS

tempera on board

96.5 x 63.5cm (38 x 25in).

FOOTNOTES

PROVENANCE:

Collection of Louis and Nettie Horch, New York

Acquired by the present owner from above, mid 1970s

Stories about the life and accomplishments of King Solomon have been a popular subject in the European artistic tradition since the Renaissance. Various artists presented the story and created a visual image of the famous builder of the Temple of Jerusalem by following the literary descriptions in the Holy Scriptures and later incorporating the evidence made available by archaeological excavations. In the early 20th century, the young Svetoslav Roerich boldly selected the portrait genre to offer his very own vision of the legendary king, making the present painting a unique and highly unusual work of art.

This portrait of King Solomon was painted in 1923 in Paris, where Svetoslav Roerich stopped on the way from the United States to India while travelling with his parents. This year marked a turning point in his artistic career. During several months while travelling extensively through Europe, Svetoslav Roerich had been introduced to the chefs-d'oeuvre of European painting. After visiting Italy in the summer of 1923, he began working on a large series of paintings depicting the most important religious figures and spiritual teachers of the past. While sailing from Port Said to New York, Svetoslav Roerich wrote: 'I am getting ready for my projects in India...I am currently working on a large series depicting all the Great Saints and Spiritual Teachers." (Svetoslav Roerich, Letter to Maurice Lichtmann, November 22, 1923; Archive of Nicholas Roerich Museum, New York). According to the artist, this ambitious cycle of 46 portraits was intended for a special exhibition and was conceived to express the idea of the 'unification of all religions through the medium of art'. The present portrait is the second, and one of only two finished works, as the artist did not come to complete the epic series, directing his attention instead to new projects inspired by his experiences in India.

King Solomon is depicted holding a chalice and wearing the legendary ring featuring the hexagram or the Star of David. In the distance to the left of the figure is the monumental Temple of Jerusalem. The artist's interpretation of the legendary biblical king was apparently based on a legend mentioned by Helena Roerich, mother of the artist, in her diary where she retold the story about the magical chalice of King Solomon reputedly hidden away at a secret location in Jerusalem (Helena Roerich's Diary, August 8, 1924). The artist however was not interested in presenting a realistic and reconstructive image which swarmed with details and historical artefacts that could bring to life the legendary King Solomon, son of King David, heir to the Kingdom of Israel and builder of the Temple in Jerusalem. For Svetoslav Roerich, the portrait of King Solomon is a vehicle for mystical experience; his Solomon had drunk from the chalice of his fate, and sacrificed himself for the creation of the Great Temple. This profound symbolism was most likely suggested by Nicholas Roerich himself, who upon arriving to India wrote in the essay 'Strings of Earth' about Solomon's 'desire to build a unified Temple' (Nicholas Roerich, Puti Blagosloveniya, New York, Alatas, 1924, page 103). The spiritual affinity between Nicholas Roerich's own ideas about the unity and harmonious co-existence that he lived by and King Solomon's eternal wisdom allowed the artist to model the portrait of the legendary biblical king on the likeness of his father, another spiritual Teacher and cultural leader of modern times. To this extent, the present work can be seen as a poetic personification of Nicholas Roerich as a legendary ancient Builder of the Temple known for his great Wisdom, Wealth and Power.

The portrait is highly stylised and reflects the artist's interest in theatrical design which he developed starting in 1922. Svetoslav assisted Nicholas Roerich with stage designs for Rimsky-Korsakov's Snow Maiden staged in Chicago, as well as creating costumes for the famous American dancer Ruth Page. Solomon's headpiece and his robe are richly textured and elegant, his beard is painted with broad, sculptural brushstrokes revealing Svetoslav's professional training as a sculptor received at the University of Massachusetts. The poetic theatricality displayed by the portrait reinforces the spiritual connection and the undeniable power of the image.

The reverse side of the painting, depicting a falcon hunt, reveals Svetoslav Roerich's talent as a capable stylist and illustrator. The scene of the falcon hunt is an illustration for the edition of European fairy tales commissioned by one of the French publishing houses in 1923. At the suggestion of his father, the artist terminated the contract and abandoned what promised to be a spectacular series of illustrations. The present scene showing the horseman and his servant demonstrates the influence of the Italian master Benozzo Gozzoli known for his ability to enhance the theatricality of the scenes with imaginative decorativeness and an elegant palette. Svetoslav Roerich, who always admired the art of the Early Renaissance, is known to have studied Gozzoli's fresco in Florence during his stay there in 1923.

In the autumn of 1923, St. Francis of Assisi and King Solomon were completed and were among a large group of works brought from Europe to New York by Louis Horch, President of the International Center Corona Mundi, who was planning a large solo exhibit of Svetoslav Roerich in the US. The exhibition finally was opened in the winter of 1925 but consisted primarily of works completed in India. By that time many new works were sent to New York from India to be exhibited there, and early paintings such as this monumental portrait of King Solomon remained in the possession of Louis Horch. Eventually, in the late 1970s, the work was acquired by its present owner. Never exhibited or published before and known only to a narrow circle of specialists, the present work is an important discovery of an early masterpiece of the artist whose popularity continues to grow and whose artistic talent is yet to be appreciated fully.

We are grateful to Dr. Vladimir Rosov, Head of the Roerich Research Department, State Oriental Art Museum, Moscow, for his assistance in preparing this catalogue entry.

SALEROOM NOTICES

Please note that the painting on the verso of this lot is not titled 'St. Francis of Assisi' as stated in the catalogue, but should correctly be titled 'Falcon Hunt'.

https://www.bonhams.com/auctions/18991/lot/87/

Lot 87*

£ 200,000 - 300,000

RUB 18,000,000 - 26,000,000

THE RUSSIAN SALE

30 Nov 2011, 14:00 GMT

LONDON, NEW BOND STREET

LOT DETAILS

Svetoslav Nikolaevich Roerich (Russian, 1904-1993)

King Solomon, 1923 (recto) and Falcon Hunt (verso); a double-sided painting

tempera on board

96.5 x 63.5cm (38 x 25in).

FOOTNOTES

PROVENANCE:

Acquired directly from the artist by Louis and Nettie Horch, New York, c. 1930

Acquired by the present owner from above, mid 1970s

Stories about the life and accomplishments of King Solomon have been a popular subject in the European artistic tradition since the Renaissance. Various artists presented the story and created a visual image of the famous builder of the Temple of Jerusalem by following the literary descriptions in the Holy Scriptures and later incorporating the evidence made available by archaeological excavations. In the early 20th century, the young Svetoslav Roerich boldly selected the portrait genre to offer his very own vision of the legendary king, making the present painting a unique and highly unusual work of art.

This portrait of King Solomon was painted in 1923 in Paris, where Svetoslav Roerich stopped on the way from the United States to India while travelling with his parents. This year marked a turning point in his artistic career. During several months while travelling extensively through Europe, Svetoslav Roerich had been introduced to the chefs-d'oeuvre of European painting. After visiting Italy in the summer of 1923, he began working on a large series of paintings depicting the most important religious figures and spiritual teachers of the past. While sailing from Port Said to New York, Svetoslav Roerich wrote: 'I am getting ready for my projects in India...I am currently working on a large series depicting all the Great Saints and Spiritual Teachers." (Svetoslav Roerich, Letter to Maurice Lichtmann, November 22, 1923; Archive of Nicholas Roerich Museum, New York). According to the artist, this ambitious cycle of 46 portraits was intended for a special exhibition and was conceived to express the idea of the 'unification of all religions through the medium of art'. The present portrait is the second, and one of only two finished works, as the artist did not come to complete the epic series, directing his attention instead to new projects inspired by his experiences in India.

King Solomon is depicted holding a chalice and wearing the legendary ring featuring the hexagram or the Star of David. In the distance to the left of the figure is the monumental Temple of Jerusalem. The artist's interpretation of the legendary biblical king was apparently based on a legend mentioned by Helena Roerich, mother of the artist, in her diary where she retold the story about the magical chalice of King Solomon reputedly hidden away at a secret location in Jerusalem (Helena Roerich's Diary, August 8, 1924). The artist however was not interested in presenting a realistic and reconstructive image which swarmed with details and historical artefacts that could bring to life the legendary King Solomon, son of King David, heir to the Kingdom of Israel and builder of the Temple in Jerusalem. For Svetoslav Roerich, the portrait of King Solomon is a vehicle for mystical experience; his Solomon had drunk from the chalice of his fate, and sacrificed himself for the creation of the Great Temple. This profound symbolism was most likely suggested by Nicholas Roerich himself, who upon arriving to India wrote in the essay 'Strings of Earth' about Solomon's 'desire to build a unified Temple' (Nicholas Roerich, Puti Blagosloveniya, New York, Alatas, 1924, page 103). The spiritual affinity between Nicholas Roerich's own ideas about the unity and harmonious co-existence that he lived by and King Solomon's eternal wisdom allowed the artist to model the portrait of the legendary biblical king on the likeness of his father, another spiritual Teacher and cultural leader of modern times. To this extent, the present work can be seen as a poetic personification of Nicholas Roerich as a legendary ancient Builder of the Temple known for his great Wisdom, Wealth and Power.

The portrait is highly stylised and reflects the artist's interest in theatrical design which he developed starting in 1922. Svetoslav assisted Nicholas Roerich with stage designs for Rimsky-Korsakov's Snow Maiden staged in Chicago, as well as creating costumes for the famous American dancer Ruth Page. Solomon's headpiece and his robe are richly textured and elegant, his beard is painted with broad, sculptural brushstrokes revealing Svetoslav's professional training as a sculptor received at the University of Massachusetts. The poetic theatricality displayed by the portrait reinforces the spiritual connection and the undeniable power of the image.

The reverse side of the painting, depicting a falcon hunt, reveals Svetoslav Roerich's talent as a capable stylist and illustrator. The scene of the falcon hunt is an illustration for the edition of European fairy tales commissioned by one of the French publishing houses in 1923. At the suggestion of his father, the artist terminated the contract and abandoned what promised to be a spectacular series of illustrations. The present scene showing the horseman and his servant demonstrates the influence of the Italian master Benozzo Gozzoli known for his ability to enhance the theatricality of the scenes with imaginative decorativeness and an elegant palette. Svetoslav Roerich, who always admired the art of the Early Renaissance, is known to have studied Gozzoli's fresco in Florence during his stay there in 1923.

In the autumn of 1923, St. Francis of Assisi and King Solomon were completed and were among a large group of works brought from Europe to New York by Louis Horch, President of the International Center Corona Mundi, who was planning a large solo exhibit of Svetoslav Roerich in the US. The exhibition finally was opened in the winter of 1925 but consisted primarily of works completed in India. By that time many new works were sent to New York from India to be exhibited there, and early paintings such as this monumental portrait of King Solomon remained in the possession of Louis Horch. Eventually, in the late 1970s, the work was acquired by its present owner. Never exhibited or published before and known only to a narrow circle of specialists, the present work is an important discovery of an early masterpiece of the artist whose popularity continues to grow and whose artistic talent is yet to be appreciated fully.

We are grateful to Dr. Vladimir Rosov, Head of the Roerich Research Department, State Oriental Art Museum, Moscow, for his assistance in preparing this catalogue entry.

 

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