Two important works on paper by the Austrian expressionist painter Egon Schiele lead the sale of modern art at Vienna-based Dorotheum on November 21. The first, Liegende Frau (Reclining Woman), is a gouache and black crayon on paper from 1917. Pegged at €700,000 to €1,200,000 ($811,500–$1,391,000)**, the work likely depicts Schiele’s wife, Edith Harms, or her sister Adele, both of whom often modeled for the artist.
The second sheet, Frauenkopf (Head of a Woman) (1918), a black crayon on paper, is among Shiele’s last works, executed at the height of the artist’s career and not long before his untimely death at age 28. Schiele succumbed to the Spanish flu on October 31, 1918, 3 days after his expectant wife died of the same malady. The work carries an estimate of €200,000 to €300,000 ($232,000–$348,000).
Other sale highlights among the 113 lots on offer include Alfons Walde’s wintery oil on cardboard Kitzbühel (1930), estimated at €220,000 to €320,000 ($255,000–$371,000); Max Pechstein’s African-art-inspired watercolor, Negerskulpturen (1919), estimated at €20,000 to €30,000 ($23,500–$35,000); Emil Filla’s 1933 oil on canvas, Jeune fille pensive, estimated at €120,000 to €200,000 ($139,500–$232,000); and Fernand Léger’s Composition avec un marteau sur fond vert (1932), a tempera on paper tagged at €45,000 to €60,000 ($52,500–$70,000).
**Liegende Frau sold for €2,345,000 ($2,778,265) more than doubling its €1.2 million ($1,391,000) high estimate on November 21.