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Albert Marquet (1857-1947) – “Quatre autos”

To be sold at Uppsala Auktionskammare’s Important Sale 11-14 June 2019

Lot 590. Albert Marquet (France 1857‑1947). ”Quatre autos” – View from Strandvägen, Stockholm. Signed Marquet. Oil on canvas, 50 x 61 cm.

Executed in 1938 during Albert Marquet’s visit to Stockholm.


600.000 – 800.000 SEK
€ 56.000 – 75.000


Publisher Kaj Bonnier (1901‑1970), Stockholm.
Stockholms Auktionsverk, Modern Sale, 24 April 2008, cat. no. 1053 (illustrated in catalogue).
An Important Private Collection, acquired at the above sale.


Liljevalchs konsthall, Stockholm, ”Från Cézanne till Picasso – Fransk konst
i svensk ägo”, 1954, cat. no. 226.

In context

Albert Marquet’s ”Quatre Autos” – View from Strandvägen, Stockholm

”From the east to the west, from the north to the south, Marquet portrayed the little changes of light above the hulls of the boats, the subtle play of the sky and of the sea. With incomparable self-assuredness he reduced the landscape to its essential elements”.

The French painter Albert Marquet discovered his passion for art and drawing at an early age. Contrary to his father’s wishes, Marquet moved together with his mother to Paris to further explore his artistic talent, where he enrolled at the Ècole Nationale des Arts Decoratifs and was introduced to fellow artist Henri Matisse who became a lifelong friend of his. While studying in Paris he often visited the many great museums and practised drawing by making copies of masters such as Claude Lorrain, Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin and Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot. Outside the walls of the classroom and museums, Paris was a city bustling of life and Marquet enjoyed walking along the river portraying the city and its citizens. The young artist enjoyed painting the spectacular view from his studio in Paris, situated by the river Seine, and depicted the ever-changing appearance of his beloved city through various seasons.

Even though Paris was Marquet’s home and the city he always returned to, he found great inspiration during his many trips abroad. In 1938 Marquet visited Stockholm for two months together with his wife Marcelle. This historical city surrounded by water on every side and its stunning archipelago allowed the artist to paint his favourite subject over and over again: river, sea views, ports and ships. Immediately struck by the famous Nordic light, Marquet painted with an everlasting energy resulting in the execution of several paintings, depicting various parts of the city. The months spent in the Swedish capital offered the artist an opportunity to spend his days observing the boats which populated the sea, but also the everyday life of the people. His wife Marcelle was quoted in the catalogue for an exhibition with Albert Marquet in Lausanne in 1988: ”He found again a city made for him with water in all of its quarters and a variety of motifs. The painting included in this sale is titled “Quatre Autos” – View from Strandvägen, Stockholm and shows four cars parked next to each other by the quay. People are enjoying the fresh air while walking along the waterside; a little dog is jumping of joy to be running outside. The pink flowers in the tree resemble the colours of the cherry blossom, which can be seen in full bloom during early springtime in Stockholm. Marquet has captured the everyday life of the bustling city in the most thoughtful way and he depicted Nybroviken and Strandvägen many times before his return to Paris. Beautiful Strandvägen consists of architect-designed buildings mostly dating from the late 1800’s, situated with a spectacular view of the city.

Some of Albert Marquet’s Stockholm paintings were exhibited by Gösta Olson at Svensk-Franska Konstgalleriet in Stockholm from April to May in 1938. Legendary art dealer Gösta Olson became a close friend of Marquet’s and in his book “From Ling to Picasso”, he described their first meeting: “I ended up forming a firm friendship with Marquet since that summer of 1919. At that time he was still a bachelor, but a few years later he married Marcelle, a beautiful, moneyed French woman from Algeria. When she came into his life, his paintings suddenly became very expensive. I had the pleasure of introducing Marquet to Sweden. He was fascinated by the snow and came here to paint it.”

Albert Marquet was one of the first artists to use thick brushstrokes of unmixed colour deftly used in order to capture light effects and the contrasting shades to enhance the brightness. Together with fellow artists Maurice de Vlaminck, André Derain, Othon Friesz, Georges Rouault and Georges Braque among others he exhibited his colourful fauvist works in 1905 at the Salon d’Automne in Paris. Although Marquet painted with the fauvist painters for years, he used less bright colours and instead emphasised the less intense tones. By maintaining a strong interest in colours and form throughout his life he created vivid compositions filled with reflections of light and different shades of colour even in his later years. His friend and contemporary Marcel Sembat remarked: “No artist has the same relationship with light as Marquet. It is as if he owned it. He possesses the secret of a pure and intense light, which fills all the sky with its uniform and colorless glow. Above the mud, the stagnant waters, the glistening stones, the smoke of railroad stations, an immense sky stretches with no blue, no azure, but how luminous! Luminous as daylight itself and so transparent that a painting by Marquet gives the impression of a large window being opened onto the outside”.

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Jeanna Ahlin


Modern & Contemporary Art
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