Joyner Canadian Fine Art Auction

June 03, 2013

LOT 118

Lot 118


Lot 118 Details


oil on canvas
signed and dated /64; signed, titled and dated on the reverse, unframed
16 ins x 20 ins; 40 cms x 50 cms

Estimate $20,000-$30,000

Realised: $17,700
Price Includes Buyer's Premium ?

Lot Report


Galerie de Montreal, Montreal.
Private Collection, Montreal.
By descent to the present owner, San Francisco.


Sandra Paikowsky, “Rita Letendre, The Montreal Years”, Concordia Art Gallery, Montreal, 1989, pages 18 and 29.


Letendre's energetic compositions of the 1960s remain some of the most celebrated artworks of her career. The artist demonstrated an early commitment to abstraction while exhibiting with the Automatistes in the 1950s. This dedication blossomed into something quite extraordinary by the following decade when Letendre conceived unrestrained, gestural works such as “Signe”. Here, the artist uses a palette knife to forge a grand, sweeping motion and sudden central vertical thrust of white pigment, creating a marvelous compositional tension between light and dark. Paikowsky writes how Letendre’s works of the early sixties exhibited “chaotic unrest as though the previously ordered natural world of her images had returned to its primeval origins.” “Signe” emerged following a decade of growth and accomplishment in Montreal for Letendre; these experiences solidified her devotion to abstraction and her concern for heavy impasto and tense, powerful forms.


For condition information please contact the specialist.

LOT 118

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.