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Wednesday, June 29, 2005
Auction of sketches by ex-mistress nets barely believable prices.

PARIS -- A sketch by Pablo Picasso of his mistress reclining nude sold Monday for $575,357 at a Paris auction where the woman sold 20 of the artist's works.

Describing the pencil on paper sketch in the sale catalog, Genevieve Laporte recalled how she had fallen asleep just as Picasso was prepairing to draw" "He waited patiently until I opened my eyes to continue his sketch!".

The Picasso Museum in Paris bought the sensual image entitled "Odalisque" for about three times the estimated price.Art curial auction house said. Altogether, the sale of Laporte's collection reaped $1.87 million.

A similar sketch, entitled "Le Songe" was sold to an unidentified British Collector for $507,239 more than twice the estimated price, said Francis Brest, the auctioneer.

"I am so happy because it has been 50 years that I have had them", said Laporte,who had a two-year secret affair with Picasso in the 1950s, when she was in her 20s.

Laporte, 79, said earlier this month that she kept the sketches Picasso gave her in a safe because she was worried about thieves, but she now was ready to part with them.

"I am at the end of my road", she said.

The two had their on-again, off-again affair when Picasso was with the painter Francoise Gilot, the mother of two of his children.

The sketches of Laport mostly were drawn when Picasso, in the summer of 1951, vacationed in St. Tropez with Laporte, the poet Paul Elaurd and his wife, Dominique.

Many sketches from the vacation bear teh inscription "For Genevieve".

One Cubist-style drwaing shows Picasso's face hidden in Laporte's tangled hair. When the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg showed the sketches, it called them his "Genevieve period," and "Tender period".

(abstracted from The Associated Press by: Rachid Aouli)
posted by infraternam meam @ 2:34 PM  
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Name: infraternam meam
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About Me: I am now at the prime of my life and have been married for the past 25 years. Sickly at times, but wants to see the elixir vita, so that I will be able to see my grandchildren from my two boys.
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