Canadian Fine Art

November 1318, 2021
Auction begins to close at 7:00 pm ET

Online Auction
LOT 53

Lot 53


Lot 53 Details


stamped signature and numbered 3/7
17.25 ins x 9.25 ins x 9.25 ins; 43.8 cms x 23.5 cms x 23.5 cms

Estimate $20,000-$30,000

Realised: $19,200
Price Includes Buyer's Premium ?

Lot Report

Additional Images

Private Collection, Port Saint Lucie, FL


Pierre Restany, Sorel Etrog, Munich, 2002, page 77
Florian Rodari, "Secret Paths, 1999-2000" in Ihor Holubizky (ed.), Sorel Etrog: Five Decades, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, page 103


Sorel Etrog broke both legs and badly injured his right hand as a result of a life-threatening car accident in 1967. For a sculptor who prided himself on his mastery of the technical ins-and-outs of sculpture, the prospect of losing his dexterity was devastating. As he slowly recovered, he became fascinated with the human hand, a motif that dominated much of his work from the late 1960s.

“Small Chair (Hand)” is a fine example of this motif. This major work demonstrates how the artist explored the intricate mechanism of the hand, yet envisioned it as distorted and damaged with fingers knotted and thus immobilized. Transforming the hand into a chair, Etrog further insisted on the inability of the appendage to function—it could carry weight but not perform even the most rudimentary action.

Dr. Alma Mikulinsky is an art historian and curator whose latest book Sorel Etrog: Life and Work was published in 2020 by Art Canada Institute. An authority on European Avant-Garde; her texts on Pablo Picasso were commissioned by leading museums such as Tate Modern and the Museé National Picasso-Paris. She opened two exhibitions this fall: Links as Bones: Sorel Etrog and the Fragile Body at the Art Gallery of Windsor and Guernica Remastered at Remai Modern.


Very good condition.

Please contact the specialist for further condition information.

All lots from this auction will be made available for pre-auction, in-person inspection and preview. This condition report has been prepared by Waddington’s as a courtesy and has been provided for guidance only. Each lot is offered in the condition it is in at the time of sale. Any reference to condition in the report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Waddington’s. Please note, certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot and may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot’s actual colour and shades, depending on your screen settings. Although Waddington’s takes great care in executing condition reports, Waddington’s specialists are not professional conservators or restorers and the report set forth is only a statement of opinion. For that reason this report is provided as a courtesy and is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice. Prospective buyers should bear in mind that this report will not disclose any imperfections which may only be revealed during the course of subsequent restoration. The Buyer agrees that Waddington’s will not be held responsible for any errors or omissions contained within the report. Buyers are reminded that Waddington’s warranties with respect to any property are limited as set forth in the Conditions of Sale and do not extend to condition.

LOT 53

About Condition Ratings

  • 5 Stars: Excellent - No discernable damage, flaws or imperfections
  • 4 Stars: Very Good - Minor flaws or imperfections visible only under close inspection using specialised instruments or black light
  • 3 Stars: Good - Minor flaws visible upon inspection under standard lighting
  • 2 Stars: Fair - Exhibits flaws or damage that may draw the eye under standard lighting
  • 1 Star: Poor - Flaws or damage immediately apparent under standard lighting (examples: missing components, rips, broken glass, damaged surfaces, etc.)

Note: Condition ratings and condition details are the subjective opinions of our specialists and should be used as a guide only. Waddington’s uses due care when preparing condition details, however, our staff are not professional restorers or conservators. Condition details and reports are not warranties and each lot is sold “as is” in accordance with the buyer’s terms and conditions of sale. In all cases the prospective purchaser is responsible for inspecting the property themselves prior to placing a bid.