Christie’s Modern British Art Evening, on March 1, 2021, will see Sir Winston Churchill’s Scene at Marrakech, circa 1935, estimated for Rs2cr – Rs.4cr (£300,000-500,000) go for sale.
Churchill had gifted the painting to Field Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery, who was one of the most distinguished generals of the Second World War and played a vital role in the retreat from the battle of Dunkirk, which saved many lives. The painting, which until now remained with the Montgomery family since it was gifted by Churchill is being offered at the auction for the first time ever.
Nick Orchard, Head of Department, Modern British Art, Christie’s: “Sir Winston Churchill’s gift of his painting, Scene at Marrakech, to Field Marshal Montgomery symbolises the deep respect and friendship the Prime Minister held for his general; a man who led the British army and was key to the victory for the allied forces in the Second World War. An accomplished artist as well as a celebrated political figure, the work stands among the best paintings executed by Churchill in the 1930s. It is an honour for Christie’s to offer Scene at Marrakech as a highlight in our Modern British Art Evening Sale, and we look forward to exhibiting the work publicly for the first time in its history in February and March 2021.”
Scene at Marrakech is inspired by Churchill’s 1935 visit to Morocco, his first to the country where the warmth and quality of light moved him. It’s one of his more accomplished works of this subject matter, depicting the chromatic intensity of the warm desert sand harmoniously contrasting with the blue stream in the foreground. The vivid greens of the vegetation in the background bring colour, life and energy to the otherwise typically sparse landscape of this scene in Morocco.
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