b. 1879
- d. 1953
  • France
Turnover 2023
$USD 22.537.758
Record Sale
$USD 10.986.623

Francis Picabia’s early artistic endeavors were influenced by Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, but he quickly embraced avant-garde movements. He was a co-founder of the Cubist group “Section d’Or” and participated in the creation of the “Puteaux Group,” where he developed his distinct approach characterized by bold colors, geometric shapes, and fragmentation of forms. However, it was his involvement with the Dada movement that solidified Picabia’s reputation as an artistic provocateur. His works during this period often featured absurd and nonsensical imagery, challenging traditional artistic conventions and questioning the very nature of art itself. His series of “mechanomorphic” paintings, which incorporated machine-like imagery, epitomized his irreverent spirit.

During the 1920s, Picabia’s artistic direction once again shifted as he delved into a more representational and classical style, creating portraits and landscapes. His “Transparencies” series demonstrated his fascination with layered images and superimposed visual elements, offering a unique perspective on perception. As Surrealism emerged, Picabia aligned himself with the movement, although his interpretation of Surrealism often diverged from its orthodox principles. His later works featured dreamlike and fantastical imagery, exploring the interplay between reality and the subconscious.

Picabia’s multifaceted career extended beyond painting. He was a prolific poet and writer, contributing to avant-garde publications and collaborating with other artists. His literary output, much like his visual art, reflected his penchant for experimentation and unconventional thinking. Francis Picabia’s legacy transcends any single artistic movement. His willingness to challenge artistic norms and his ability to embrace a multitude of styles and ideas make him a pivotal figure in the history of modern art. 


Record Sale

Francis PICABIA (1879-1953)
“”Pavonia”” (1929)

Lot # 5
149.7 x 170.8 cm
Hammer price: $ 9,341,712 (€ 8,500,000 )
Price including buyer’s premium: $ 10,986,623 (€ 9,996,700 )
Estimate: $ 6,594,150 – $ 8,792,200 (€ 6,000,000 – € 8,000,000 )
Surrealism & its Legacy
16 mar 2022
Paris, France.

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