“Eastre, Hymn to the Sun”, a sculpture valued at £12,000-18,000, by Scottish Colourist John Duncan Fergusson, which lay under his bed for three years before he could afford to have it cast, will be sold by Edinburgh auctioneers, Lyon & Turnbull in Edinburgh on 22 May 2014.
The sculpture is part of a unique collection of works of art by Fergusson from private Scottish Collections, valued at over £100,000. They come to sale at the same time as a major exhibition of his works ‘Scottish Colourist Series: J. D. Fergusson Exhibition’ continues at the Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh until the 15th June 2014.
“Fergusson was the most commercially successful and critically regarded of the Scottish Colourists. His paintings and sketches are well known, but the three sculptures we have in our sale are much rarer.” said Charlotte Riordan, Paintings Specialist at Lyon & Turnbull.
There are three bronze sculptures in the exhibition, “Eastre, Hymn to the Sun” £12,000-18,000.
“Effulgence” £7,000-10,000 and “Torse de Femme” £2,000 -3,000.
Charlotte continued “The main reason sculpture wasn’t a bigger factor in Fergusson’s career was simply down to money. Fergusson and Morris were very unmaterialistic and always hard up. He would create plaster maquets but rarely had the money to have them cast. Often, he would paint the plaster gold and exhibit them alongside labels stating “can be cast upon purchase”. The plaster of his most famous sculpture ‘Eastre: Hymn to the Sun’ lived under his bed for three years before he could afford to have it cast!”
Featured paintings include “At the Dinner Table” £30-50,000 and a significant portrait “Mademoiselle Cassavetes”, painted in 1938, which is valued at £20,000-30,000.
Charlotte explained “Spending more time in France, he exhibited with greater frequency in Paris and London and his profile was consequentially higher. Arguably, Cadell and Ferguson were the two Colourists in whose work influence of Cezanne was most evident. Their work shares a robustness of line and sense of rhythm that is found less frequently or easily in Peploe or Hunter’s paintings. However, where Cadell’s work was deliberately flattened, Fergusson’s had a more sculptural quality as here in his work of 1938, ‘Mademoiselle Cassavetes’. One of the artist’s typically handsome women, the composition is also demonstrative of Fergusson’s attention to pattern. It has been noted that many of Fergusson’s female sitters wear hats, perhaps viewing a woman’s taste in fashion as an extension of their personality.”