Modern British Picks at TEFAF Maastricht 2019

Frank Auerbach,  Jake Seated , 2007-8. Courtesy Osborne Samuel.

Frank Auerbach, Jake Seated, 2007-8. Courtesy Osborne Samuel.


The 32nd edition of TEFAF Maastricht opened its doors for an exclusive early access preview yesterday. Collectors from across the world gathered to snatch up everything from constructivist canvases to ancient coins. Amongst yesterday’s noteworthy sales were two works by Edward Burne-Jones from Day and Faber, one for €16,000 and the other for €12,000. Despite the nuisance trying to reach the fair, there are some excellent modern British works available which make it worth the trip.

Imbued with emotional depth, Auerbach’s Jake Seated, 2007-2008, a portrait of his son, can be found on Osborne Samuel’s stand. Auerbach’s portraits, much like his contemporary Kossoff (the artists were spotted together earlier this month at Kossoff’s opening at Piano Nobile), reveal his experience of the people and places that surround him. Jake once described sitting for his father in his Camden studio as ‘physically tiring but mentally incredibly useful’. It was both a time for him to allow his mind to rest and a time to bond with his estranged father. Lilac, a colour commonly associated with spirituality, mapped against a lime green makes for an unlikely marriage that here works beautifully.

Peter Blake,  Ms Super,  1987. Courtesy Christopher Kingzett.

Peter Blake, Ms Super, 1987. Courtesy Christopher Kingzett.

A play on boyhood fantasies, Peter Blake’s Ms Super (1987), shows a superhero with a Mexican wrestling mask. Set against a black background, the figure holds a confident and intimidating pose. The primary colours of the composition are typical of Pop Art; they are the colours of popular culture. Having diverted from using images of famous actors and singers, Blake had by this time begun to introduce more kitsch elements to his collages. The work can be found at Christopher Kingzett’s stand, alongside other great modern British pieces by the likes of Moore.

Four-Square (Four Circles), by Barbara Hepworth from 1966, one of three maquettes related to Hepworth’s monumental bronze, Four-Square (Walk Through) is another of the artist’s experiments with negative space. Hepworth believed that incorporating negative space to a composition worked to negate any perceived hierarchy between mass and space, and establish a balance between the two. A stunning piece of sculpture available at Connaught Brown’s stand.

Explore other exhibitors at the fair here.

The crowd queuing to enter the preview of TEFAF Maastricht 2019. Courtesy of Antiques Trade Gazette

The crowd queuing to enter the preview of TEFAF Maastricht 2019. Courtesy of Antiques Trade Gazette

Barbara Hepworth,  Four-Square (Four Circles),  1966.

Barbara Hepworth, Four-Square (Four Circles), 1966.

British Art Fair