Piet MONDRIAAN

1872-1944

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Status, price and estimation of the artist Piet MONDRIAN

Average price of a signed painting: 15,000 – 150,000€.

Estimate of a drawing or watercolour by the artist for auction: 15,000 – 300,000€.

Selling price of a lithograph: 50 – 3,000€.

Who is Piet MONDRIAN?

Pieter Cornelis Mondrian, more commonly known as Piet Mondrian, was a Dutch painter recognised as one of the pioneers of abstraction, along with Vassily Kandinsky and Kasimir Malévitch. His main movement of painting is described as Neoplasticism.

Training that is as close as possible to the avant-garde

Like Kandinsky and Malevich, Mondrian was first inspired by Fauvism (especially their proposal to abolish perspective), German Expressionism (Die Brücke) and Cubism. Very early on, he also employed the process of the series, trading in Monet’s footsteps. Thus, from 1900 to 1911, he produced a cycle of paintings depicting mills obsessively, with very strong colours and a divisionist and impasto touch.

The painter then made a first stay in Paris between the end of 1911 and 1914. The Cubists caused a sensation and Mondrian met them: he saw works by Picasso, Braque and Léger. Cubism was the royal road that would allow him to move on to abstraction: Still life with Gingerpot I and II (1911-12, Salomon R. Guggenheim, New York) date from this period. These two canvases are very revealing of Mondrian’s transition to a more cubist style of painting, thanks to the fragmentation of the planes and the distancing of the subject. All the works of this period are characterised by a strong central element around which the rest of the composition circulates.

Mondrian gradually detached himself from cubism to pursue his quest for the absolute and the economy of forms. It was then that he painted Composition 10 in black and white, 1915, Otterlo, Kröller-Müller Museum, where he depicts the glittering light on the sea, thanks to a multiplicity of crosses and lines, in a circular format reminiscent of the infinity of this body of water.

Mondrian and Theosophy: De Stijl

This quest to paint the infinite and the indecipherable expresses Mondrian’s religious interiority, which has a great influence on his work in this way of painting the invisible immanence of a perfect ordering of the world.

In 1916 he met Theo van Doesburg, who was greatly influenced by Kandinsky, with whom he created the group and the magazine De Stijl in 1917. This group highlighted a new, pure plasticity and the search for economy. Numerous artists participated, including visual artists, architects, musicians and designers, such as Rietveld. The entire De Stijl movement was characterised by radicalisation and minimal use of elements, absolute purism and mysticism.

Although Mondrian was involved in the editorial staff of De Stijl magazine for a while, he stopped in 1919 when he left for Paris. Together with the poet Michel Seuphor, he created the Cercle et Carré movement in 1929, whose name evokes the geometrical and mathematical research it implies. In 1932, he became the Abstraction and Creation group.

Neoplasticism

Between 1919 and 1938 Mondrian lived in Paris. In 1920 he painted his first neoplastic painting, based on the ideas he had already supported in De Stijl. The painter attained an extraordinary economy of means in a great formal and chromatic rigour, which can be seen in the rest of his career, as in Composition with Red, Blue, Black, Yellow and Grey, 1921, New York, MoMa. Mondrian’s painting then became totally abstract, punctuated by right angles and mathematical structures which, according to him, reflect the ordering of the world.

At the end of his life, he fled the war and went to the United States, where he was fascinated by the street layout New Yorkaises ; his art continues to tend towards the universal and is supported by numerous theoretical texts written by the artist himself. One of his great masterpieces dates from this period, Broadway Boogie-Woogie, 1942-43, New York, MoMa.

On the art market, his works, be they paintings, watercolours or drawings, are sold at exceptional prices. The world record for an auction for the artist was set in 2015 at Christie’s in New York for Composition No. III, which sold for over $50 million.

Recognising Piet Mondrian’s signature

Like many artists, Piet Mondrian did not sign all of his works. However, you will find below an example of the signatures to give you an idea. Variations of these signatures do exist, do not hesitate to contact one of our experts to formally authenticate a signature.

expertise Mondriaan

Appraise and sell a painting by Piet Mondrian

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