Oskar Kokoschka's painting entitled Frau mit dem Sklaven (Woman and Slave).
Prague – Oskar Kokoschka's painting Frau mit dem Sklaven (Woman and Slave) will go up for auction in March with a reserve price of 200 million crowns. Kateřina Sokolová told ČTK today on behalf of the auction house Adolf Loos Apartment and Gallery. The painter pictured himself with his former lover Alma Mahler. With such a high price, a work of art has not yet been offered at auction in the Czech Republic, and the starting price by tens of millions of crowns exceeds even the current record of the domestic auction ranking. Since last year, it has been held by the painting Old Prague motif by Bohumil Kubišta, which was sold for 123.6 million crowns.
The auction, which will offer the record Kokoschka, will take place on March 19. The pre-auction exhibition, which will be open every day from February 18 until the time of the auction, will have only 52 selected items. According to the organizer, they have a high collecting and investment potential and their starting price starts at 100,000 crowns. The total starting price of the offered auction items will be 365 million crowns.
The 1920 painting Woman and Slave depicts Kokoschko's former girlfriend Alma Mahler as a slave woman and Kokoschka as a slave, according to the auction organizer, Kokoschka's artistic showdown with his muse and lover. The Austrian artist had an affair between 1912 and 1914 with Mahler, the widow of the composer Gustav Mahler. This matter deeply influenced his life and work.
The most expensive work by Kokoschko that was sold at auction in the Czech Republic is the painting Prague – View from the Crusader Monastery, which was auctioned in 2019 for 78.5 million crowns and it became a record for Czech auctions at the time.
For 15 million crowns, the March auction will offer Bohumil Kubišta's Portrait of a Reader (Portrait of Prof. Antonín Matějček), which is a portrait from the turning point of the author, when he began his journey to Cubism. Kubišta painted the picture during his second stay in Paris. It presents the art historian and Kubišt's close friend, Antonín Matějček (1889 to 1950), during a reading.
The work of Josef Šíma entitled Le ciel de pierre (Stone Sky) will be offered for 8.4 million crowns. The painting comes from a private Parisian collection. Šíma painted it in his final creative period in the 1960s. With a price of 13.5 million crowns, Emil Filla's painting Still life with a falcon and a tray will be auctioned.