AN EARLY 20TH CENTURY BUST 'CENTURION' BY JEAN COCTEAU (FRENCH 1889-1963), a unique painted plaster work executed circa 1928, the plaster bust inset with a 'Musée du Louvre' mark inside the base, the head painted in naturalistic colours, the helmet painted with the artist's star monogram and the right eye also incised with artist star monogram, 29cm high
Provenance: Gifted to Madame André Mater (née Genieve de la Pouillarde) by the artist in Toulon in 1928, then gifted to John Hillard in London in 1965, gifted in turn to the present owner
This lot is accompanied by a copy of a handwritten letter by Madame Annie Guédras confirming it authenticity as a genuine Cocteau work.
This work was created on the 'template' of a plaster bust of a Centurion that the artist purchased from the Musée du Louvre. The appropriation of 'found' objects and their conversion into works of art was a common modernist tactic and can frequently be seen, for example, in Picasso's art. However, it is highly unusual within Cocteau's own oeuvre.
Estimated at £3,000 - £5,000