next sale of Orientalist art in Paris, on March 30, will include a selection of works by artists who lived in Morocco.
Several landscapes and scenes from Moroccan daily life by Jacques Majorelle reflect his close links to the country where he settled in 1917. He drew inspiration from the city of Marrakesh and its environs, expressing all the chromatic variety of Moroccan culture in his Borjs Verts (estimate 90,000-120,000) and Souk à Marrakech (est. 40,000-60,000).
Giuseppe Signorinis Portrait of a Musician and Giulio Rosatis Two Riders at the Gallop, both watercolours, are highly representative of the Orientalist taste of Italian artists in the 19th century (est. 20,000-30,000).
Two vividly colourful works by José Cruz Herrera evoke sensual Moroccan beauty: Portrait of a Young Berber Woman (est. 40,000-60,000) and Three Moroccan Beauties (est. 40,000-60,000).
The sale also includes Alexis-Auguste Delahogues Lavandières et Porteur dEau (est. 20,000-30,000); a fine gouache by the Bordeaux artist Edy Legrand, La Sortie du Sultan (est. 40,000-60,000); and Henri-Jean Pontoys lively Procession Beneath the Walls of a Moroccan Town (est. 8,000-12,000).
The section devoted to Islamic art features an iconic Iznik blue and white pottery mosque lamp, belonging to a rare group commissioned around 1510, a few of them were made for the funeral chamber of Sultan Bayezid II (d.1512). Just five other similar lamps are known: four in Çinili Köşk (Istanbul), and one in the British Museum (London) (est. 20,000-30,000).
Sothebys will also have the honour of offering two rare items of 18th century Moroccan jewellery: an engraved, filigree, openwork gold and emerald pendant from Tetuan (est. 10,000-15,000); and an important seven pendants lebba necklace from Fez, inset with emeralds, rubies, precious stones and a range of ovoid pearls (est. 30,000-40,000).
Most of the 18th and 19th century Moroccan jewellery were made in silver, especially for the nomadic tribes and rural areas people; gold items were destined for wealthy families in the main cities.
The lebba was a masterpiece of the Moroccan brides jewellery. Given the geographic position of Morocco, there was a strong European (especially Spanish) influence. They were very appreciated by European collectors in the early 20th century. Each pendant of the lebba is adorned with a rarnati (pomegranate), a fruit associated with fertility and the power to ward off the evil eye, and often used as a decorative element in Moroccan urban jewellery.
Such exceptional items of jewellery reflect the cross-influences between Islamic gold and silver techniques, and those used in Europe.
Other highlights from Moroccan jewellery offer in this sale include a hair ornament (est. 15,000-20,000); a pair of fibulae (est. 8,000-10,000); a pair of enamelled gold earrings (est. 4,000-6,000).
Friday 25 March 10am 6pm
Saturday 26 March 10am 6pm
Monday 28 March 10am 6pm
Tuesday 29 March 10am 6pm