Works by Sir John Richardson’s Many Friends in Sotheby’s Sale


Sotheby’s might seem an unusual choice to sell items from Richardson’s collection, considering that he opened the New York office of its rival, Christie’s, in the 1970s. Ms. Wanger said that both houses competed for the sale but that the two grandnieces who are his heirs “just felt very strongly about Sotheby’s.”

One of the Picasso prints is “Picador et Taureau,” a 1959 linoleum cut of a bullfight. Picasso inscribed it to Richardson when he gave it to him in 1960, the year he left the south of France, where he had lived since 1952. Sotheby’s presale estimate is $25,000 to $35,000.

“Self-Portrait: Reflection” is by Freud, the figurative painter who died in 2011 at 88 (and whose grandfather was Sigmund Freud). Phoebe Hoban, the author of “Lucian Freud: Eyes Wide Open,” said in an email that Richardson and Freud first encountered each other at the Slade School of Fine Art at University College, London, in 1942. Sotheby’s estimated that “Self-Portrait: Reflection” would sell for $70,000 to $100,000.

Another Freud etching to be sold is a portrait of David Dawson (presale estimate, $70,000 to $100,000). Ms. Hoban said that Richardson had told her that “David was many different things to Lucian, not just a studio assistant and a primary subject, but a best friend.”

Ms. Bartow said the Warhol Jagger, inscribed by the artist “to John R,” was one of 10 in a series that was different from the famous Marilyn Monroe images. Each image of Mr. Jagger was different, unlike the Monroe set, where only the colors changed from image to image.

Ms. Bartow said Richardson would have noticed. “As a scholar who made his living through his eyes rather than just through reading things and interviewing people,” she said, “he had the intelligence to see that this was a different approach by the artist.”

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