How a $10 Million Miró Public sale Flop Turned Right into a Dream Come True for One Dutch Museum

Whereas it’s hardly ever the case that the failure of a trophy multimillion-dollar paintings on the public sale block has a cheerful ending, this one does.

Almost a 12 months in the past, Joan Miró’s Peinture poème (Musique, Seine, Michel, Bataille et moi) (1927), one of many artist’s final “dream” work, was supplied at a Christie’s night public sale with an estimate of $8 million to $12 million. It had been consigned by the Switzerland-based Volkart Basis, which was established in 1951 to have a good time the a centesimal anniversary of the Swiss commodities buying and selling agency Gebrüder Volkart.

Bidding was unenthusiastic, nonetheless, and the Miró failed to succeed in the undisclosed reserve value—the key minimal value the vendor has set—and didn’t discover a purchaser.

That’s when the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam, Netherlands, leapt into motion.

It had already been retaining a detailed eye on the Surrealist treasure. “We knew the work from the everlasting assortment in Kunstmuseum Winterthur, the place it was on a everlasting mortgage foundation within the museum for many years,” mentioned Boijmans director Sjarel Ex.

The Boijmans had itself proven the work as soon as when it was loaned for an exhibition of the museum’s Surrealist assortment in Italy. 

“A Miró like this has been an absence within the assortment from the outset,” Ex mentioned in an announcement. 

Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen. Photo Ossip van Duivenbode

Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen. Picture Ossip van Duivenbode

When it first got here on the public sale block, Ex mentioned that the museum “noticed the significance instantly, although going to an public sale in the USA inside three weeks with such a excessive estimate was an not possible mission for us.”

However after they realized the lot had gone unsold, they instantly contacted Christie’s, which linked them with the house owners, the Swiss Volkart Stiftung. “They the place prepared to offer us six months to boost funds and we requested for one of the best value doable if the museum could be the customer,” Ex mentioned.

Due to the generosity of an extended checklist of supporters, the museum was in a position to elevate the roughly $8 million (CHF 8 million) asking value. Now, the Miró is formally a part of the Boijmans assortment, and it was celebrated in a public ceremony right now. The work marks the musuem’s costliest buy ever.

The Miró has been on view since late June on the Depot Boijmans van Beuningen, a $100 million construction that opened in November 2021 subsequent to the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen’s major constructing, which is closed for renovation till 2025.

Artwork on show contained in the Depot Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam. Picture by Eileen Kinsella.

The Boijmans already incorporates many Surrealist masterpieces by artists together with Salvador Dalí, Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray, Francis Picabia, René Magritte, Unica Zürn, Leonora Carrington, and others.

“It’s honest to explain this assortment as distinctive. It has been made doable by the museum’s many pals, funds, and authorities companies,” mentioned Ex.

“The acquisition of this essential portray by Miró fulfils a long-cherished—and lengthy thought to be not possible—want of Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen,” mentioned Geert-Jan Janse, director of the Rembrandt Society, which helped help the acquisition. “This unbelievable buy reveals what will be achieved for Dutch cultural heritage after we be part of forces.”

“If essential, we are able to wait 5 generations for a specific portray,” mentioned Ex. However at the least within the case of the Miró, “the wait is over.”


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