Artist : Le Mayeur de Merpres (1880 – 1958) ===== Medium : Oil on canvas ===== Signature : “J. Le Mayeur” at lower right ===== Height : +/- 97 cm ===== Width : +/- 124.5 cm ===== Period/Date : 1951, acquired in 1951 ===== Country : Bali - Indonesia ===== Condition : Good ===== Re-Examined Date : 29th November 2018 ===== Authenticity # : P-1039/29/07/2001 ===== 1. RESEARCH & ESSAY ============== As a Belgian-born painter and traveler, Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur de Merprès (1880 - 1958) traveled to the corners of the world, including France, Italy, Morocco, Tunisia, Aljazair, India, Thailand, Cambodia, and even Tahiti. He then sailed to Bali Island when he was 52, and was enthralled by its rich culture, cordiality of people, religious pace, and the appealing local maiden’s beauty. Le Mayeur was fascinated by the stroke of moonlight in the night, the rising sun at dawn, and the colors of rich cultural life surrounding him that subdued his notion to the quiet, yet exotic Island. More than that, Le Mayeur met a 15-year-old beautiful Legong dancer, Ni Wayan Pollok Tjoeglik (1917-1985) who frequently was called as his beloved name “Ni Pollok”. After marrying her in 1935, Le Mayeur adjured her to become his muse, painting model, and wife respectively. =============== Entitled to “Ni Pollok Lying Under a Parasol in the Afternoon”, the present work was executed with distinctively vigorous brushstrokes vibrantly rendering thirteen Balinese women wondrously posing in sensuality of bare-breasted tradition with dramatic compositions. Ni Pollok is highlighted as the main subject reclining on floor mat covered with scarf under an opened umbrella in front of terrace surrounded by eight large statues of Hindu gods and several figures, including the beach and seascape in the background. The inclusion of luxuriant arch of boughs of frangipani trees and foliage of the tropics with fallen flowers around the figures imbued the relaxed lifestyle in the stunning landscape of tropical paradise in the late afternoon. =============== The subject is exquisitely painted and layered in dense and strong brushstrokes in predominantly vibrant red, orange, green, beige, black and white pigments capturing two-dimensional effects. Exhibiting the extravagant green foliage and delicately red dotted flowers, the painter attested the lush garden in his villa. The orange and yellowish hue colors on the present subject were created in casting a warm glow upon the figures’ naked skins to allow that the subject comes alive what the artist wished to attain. With the mottled sunlight shining through gaps in the figures and ground on the present painting, we can see that the current painting renders the illusion of depth, and supremely setting that disposes for an impressionist palette using colors, textures and strokes in playing light and shadow. Measuring 124.5 x 97 cm, the present work was painted during the immediate post-war years, in early 1952. Compared to his pre-war paintings, the present painting features the specific characteristics. His post-ware works, like the present painting, are depicted with more than three figures, including more figures in the background of the main subject. The post-ware ones are usually executed in vibrant and vivid pigments, a balanced composition, detailed anatomy, and strong lighting details that make the painting subject come alive, and the artist avoided to paint and draw in a loose manner. However, in his oeuvre, Le Mayeur constantly rendered impressions of Ni Pollok in various attitudes throughout his career. =============== During his career, the repetition of the same subjects, decorative elements and poses of figures on the present painting return again in his works many times. For example, the similar subject with decorative elements and composition but it different flowers arrangement to the present painting is a larger painting (150.5 x 200.5 cm) from Christie’s Hong Kong, entitled to “Terrace affording a View of the Sea with Pollok under an Umbrella”. The painting was sold in 28th May 2006, lot. 61 for HK$13,560,000 or equivalent to US$ 1,675,000 USD (see fig. 1). Another in slightly different composition is a smaller painting (76 x 90 cm) entitled to “Balinese Women in the Garden”, sold at Christie’s Singapore, 1st October 2000, lot. 34 (see fig. 2). Again, a smaller painting (55 x 65 cm) entitled to “Balinese Ladies in a Garden” painted in slightly different composition, was sold at Christie’s Hong Kong, 26th November 2006, lot. 88 for HKD 2,136,000, initially estimated between HKD 600,000 - HKD 700,000 (see fig. 3). =============== In 22 – 26 November 1951 and 1952, the first President of Republic of Indonesia, Soekarno, visited Le Mayeur’s studio and met Le Mayeur and his wife, Ni Pollok. In their intimate meeting and relationship, Le Mayeur presented four paintings as the gifts to the President. Two of Le Mayeur’s works in similar composition to the present piece is in the collection entitled “Kenikmatan Hidup I” (seize: 151 cm x 200 cm) and “Kenikmatan Hidup II” (size: 150 cm x 200 cm, oil on canvas). His work entitled “Kenikmatan Hidup II” is depicted with similar Ni Pollok lying under parasol with several figures and sea view in the background to the present painting but in different position (see fig. 4), illustrated in Lukisan Dan Patung Koleksi Presiden Sukarno, edited by Lee Man Fong, Vol. 4, Tokyo, 1964. =============== Citation: 1. Lukisan Dan Patung Koleksi Presiden Sukarno, edited by Lee Man Fong, Vol. 4, Tokyo, 1964.
Height : +/- 97 cm ===== Width : +/- 124.5 cm
PROVENANCE OF ARTWORK: Lo Wing Tjong (1851 – 1934) to Liem Guan Kwee (22th September 1901 – 25th March 1985) to Liem Syuhada (12th June 1927 – 22nd April 2000) to Current Owners (Descendants) =============== The present painting was acquired directly from the artist in 14th July 1951 in the artist’s studio in Bali Island by ‘Liem Guan Kwee (22th September 1901 – 25th March 1987), a son of Lo Wing Tjong (1851 – 1934), a Diplomat and Chinese community leader in Batavia under Guangxu reign (1875 – 1908) of China. The acquisition of the present piece was three years after a Dutch Military Aggression II against the Republic of Indonesia was tempestuous in 19th December 1948. His visiting at the artist’s studio had been four months before the first President of Republic of Indonesia, Soekarno, visited Le Mayeur’s studio in 22nd – 26th November 1951, which Le Mayeur presented four paintings as the gifts to the President. Lo Wing Tjong acquired the present artwork in the form of a rolled strand of painting without its Balinese carved wood frame. After arriving at home in East Java, he framed the present painting with a usual wood frame. =============== During the aggression and attack, the Dutch managed to capture the Indonesian Republic's temporary capital, Yogyakarta, and seized Indonesian leaders such as Republican President Sukarno. Referred to by the Dutch as the second of two "Politionele acties" ("Police Actions"), it is known in Indonesia as Agresi Militer Belanda II ("Dutch military aggression II"). The second Politionele Actie was aimed at forcing the Republic to cooperate with the Dutch government in the implementation of the federalist policy as stipulated in the Linggadjati Agreement. Lo Wing Tjong and his family fled to save their life in Bali Island in 1948 - 1950. In Bali, Lo Wing Tjong visited Le Mayeur’s studio and met the artist to acquire the present artwork on July 1951. =============== In 2001, the present artwork was researched and authenticated by team of National Archaeology, Art and Culture Foundation in person deriving from Southeast Asia artworks, paintings and Chinese ceramics experts. The foundation itself was led by Professor Abu Ridho, an Asian art scholar and consultant, former curator of National Museum of Jakarta – Indonesia, and author of Chinese art books. The physical examination of this artwork and its authenticity is certified on an official letter of statement and agreement that was signed by professor and legalized by public notary ‘Royani, SH’, dated 8th April 2002. In 2004, the government of Republic of Indonesia recorded this legacy especially regarding with its authenticity, historical artwork and the ownership of property or legal rights. This artwork was appreciated and archived officially as a national cultural heritage object by Culture and Museum Agency of Government of Indonesia, Jakarta, number 863/-1-853.3, dated 14th April 2004. =============== In 2018, this artwork was re-researched by team of National Archaeology, Art and Culture Foundation. The team of experts in the respective field re-researched and re-analyzed this artwork by more elaborate manner. The re-research and re-analyzing include its technical or stylistic analysis, documentary research and comparison with similar artist or periods. All of them are relied on archives, art libraries and reputable art and antique commercial institutions or auction houses enabling to strongly establish its eligible quality and authenticity. =============== All documents and photos of its provenance and certificate of authenticity are included in separated page.
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The presented object appears to be a painting oil on canvas with the measurements of 97 x 124,5 cm. This painting depicts several Balinese women sunbathing under trees. This painting has the title: Ni Pollok Lying Under a Parasol in The Afternoon. It appears to be made, signed by Adrien Jean LE MAYEUR DE MERPRES (1880-1958). It comes from a private collection.
Comparable objects were recently offered and sold on the international auction market. This piece is in good condition and there is no severe damage visible in the images provided.
A fair market estimation for an authentified artwork by Adrien Jean LE MAYEUR DE MERPRES (1880-1958) with this motif and in this size would be between 500.000 to 750.000 USD.
This estimate is based on actual recent past recorded auction sales of comparable items. Retail "asking prices" can be higher and may vary.
An artwork of such high potential value requires further authentication research. This estimate is provided on the condition of authenticity.
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