January 31, 2009
What if you had the opportunity to buy a painting by a renowned Haitian master at a bargain price? Would you forego a mortgage or rent payment and borrow funds from Aunt Sally just to get the work in your personal collection? I understand the collecting urge because I am prisoner to it on many occasions. But if the price is out of reach, it’s out of reach and practicality overtakes whim in helping to decide what to do. I’ll have to pass but maybe someone reading this blog will act on the information. The auction is Sunday, February 1st — tomorrow.
These thoughts were in my head this week when an official at Thomaston Place Auction Galleries in Thomaston, Maine emailed me with nine images, including a close-up of the artist’s signature, of a magnificent painting by Andre Pierre. The untitled work on canvas, measuring thirty inches by thirty-nine and three-quarter inches, portrays a group of people watching a Vodou priestess or mambo creating a veve or line drawing in the earth. This forest scene also shows a man leading a bull into a circle for sacrifice. A metal cross is in a bonfire while a sack is tied to a tree.
In strong primary colors and a style rare to find, this painting by the late Andre Pierre dates from 1967. The low estimate is $2,000 and the high estimate is $3,000. But it could go for a much higher price than $3,000. Or it could go unnoticed by Haitian art collectors because the work is the sole Haitian piece in a person’s collection of more than 300 items, ranging from advertising items and Native American beadwork to bronze sculptures.
The only problem with the Pierre painting is a small puncture to the canvas, though a savvy art restorer could repair it undetectably. Ideally, either a collector or a museum will snap up this rare opportunity to own a masterpiece for very little money. To learn more, visit the web site www.thomastonauction.com or telephone 1-207-354-8141. If you access the web site, look for the February 1st part of the auction and click on 2-D art and scroll down until you find it. If you’re the fortunate buyer, let me know and I’ll tell your story to other readers.
— Candice Russell