Picasso for Robin Symes Collection Auction

The eclectic and varied Robin Symes Collection will be going under the hammer at Bonhams Oxford on 7th October. This outstanding single-owner collection will no doubt appeal to collectors, decorators and private buyers alike, including Old Masters, 20th Century American abstracts, architectural items, textiles and tribal pieces.

PicassoAn important Picasso (1881-1973) figure study once owned by a member of the artist’s family is a notable highlight of the sale, expected to reach £20,000-30,000. Another valuable 20th Century work going under the hammer is Frantisek Kupka’s(1871-1957) Study for Fugue in two colours, estimated at £10,000-15,000.

From the Florentine School (circa 1600), Study of a Medici Lion is a magnificent red chalk drawing estimated at between £3,000 and £5,000. Another highlight of the Old Masters section is the prominent Study of a reclining male figure by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo (1696-1770). This ink piece is expected to sell for £7,000-10,000, whilst Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo’s (1727-1804) drawing of Hercules and Antaeus is estimated at a similarly impressive £5,000-7,000. Bidders will also be extremely interested in Study of a stooping male figure by Giovanni Battista Franco (1498-1561) estimated at £10,000-15,000. This extremely rare pen and ink blue paper drawing dates from Franco’s late Venetian period and is thought to be a pose study for one of the awakened soldiers in the Resurrection of Christ lunette form the Grimani Chapel, S. Francesco della Vigna, Venice.

Alongside these classics, the Robin Symes collection also offers a more contemporary selection of photographs including three male nudes by Herb Ritts (1952-2002), whose pre-sale estimates range from £1,000 to £6,000.

Those interested in abstract art will be captivated by the 14 large canvasses by the iconic Thornton Willis (b. 1936). These large vibrant oil paintings will be selling for £800-1,200 each. Elsewhere, Prunella Clough’s (1919-1999) Sequence II 1981 is an unusual and compelling piece that is expected to sell for £3,000-4,000.

The sale also features a selection of antique furniture, Dominique Biard jewellery, sculptures and interesting works of art. Of particular note is A Florentine mannerist marble group, a 16th Century sculpture of a semi-naked male fending off a winged mythical creature, which is expected to attract bids of £2,000-4,000. Elsewhere, there is an opportunity to purchase a range of extraordinary marble pieces, from magnificent marble columns and decorative table tops to 18th Century marble busts from the Roman period.

Michael Wynell-Mayow, Director of Carpets, Furniture and Works of Art comments: “This No Reserve Sale is a rare opportunity to acquire interesting and beautiful works of art that had been chosen with an exceptional eye, by Robin Symes.”