Gourmet Fair

Critic’s Choice: A Gourmet Fair of Gourmet Fare

Jean Siméon Chardin, 1699-1779, The Grand Buffet, canvas. Estimated at US$2,1 million – US$3.1 million (2,000,000 – 3,000,000 euros). Photo Artcurial. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

Paris, France — A great art auction is waiting in the wings at the French house of Artcurial. Old Masters and 19th century paintings, drawings and sculptures are slated to be auctioned off on March 22nd. The auction takes place during a high point on the Parisian art scene for it is being held in the same week as the Salon du Dessin and Drawing Now drawing fairs which attract a large international contingent. Beautiful banquets are among the rare paintings taking part in the sale. One was executed by the great 18th century French painter Jean Siméon Chardin whose painting of Le grand buffet offers up a delicious meat pie surrounded by fruits with the table being clearly coveted by a black and white cat. The canvas is estimated at US$2.1 million – US$3.1 million (2,000,000 – 3,000,000 euros). Meanwhile a melon, watermelon and diverse fruits grace a table in the canvas of the Italian master and Caravaggesque artist known as Pensionante del Saraceni. This rare still life was most likely executed between 1610 and 1620 and each piece of fruit is life-sized and a bevy of great detail.

Bartolomeo Bimbi, 1648-1729, Vase of Flowers, Plate of Figs, Melons and Plums in a Landscape. Canvas signed Il Bimbi on the lower left. Estimation : US$210,000 – US$316,000 (200,000 -300,000 euros). Photo Artcurial. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

Another gourmet highlight is a canvas by the Florentine artist Bartolomeo Bimbi who was close to Francesco Redi, the naturalist to the House of Medici. Bimbi painted large canvases of flora and fauna on commission, notably for the Medici family. His still life depicting a vase of flowers, a platter of figs, melons and plums in a landscape is another exceptional work being auctioned at Artcurial. Luca Penni’s Virgin with Child and the young John Baptiste is also on offer. Penni was originally from Florence and trained in Rome in the circle of Raphael and is widely known for his participation in the decoration of the Fontainebleau castle outside of Paris. 

Jan van Kessel the Elder, 1626-1679, Insects, Amphibians, Sea Shells and Mice. Oil on panel. Signed and dated 1673. Estimation : US$210,000 – US$ 420,000 (200,000 -400,000 euros). Photo Artcurial. Handout via The Gourmet Gazette

The Gourmet Gazette’s Critic’s Choice award goes to a rare work by the Flemish painter Jan van Kessel the Elder depicting a host of insects, amphibians, sea shells and small mammals, signed and dated 1673. The work astounds by the diversity of the animals portrayed on the oil painting. The house of Artcurial is exhibiting the works to be auctioned off from March 18th until March 21st with the sale taking place on March 22nd at 6pm. ©Trish Valicenti for The Gourmet Gazette. https://www.artcurial.com/en

Artcurial, 7 Rond-Point des Champs-Elysées, Marcel Dassault, 75008 Paris, France

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