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Robert Winthrop Chanler lived big, painted big, loved big and was just plain big, 6-foot-4, 200-plus pounds, with a giant crown of shaggy hair. Despite all that, he remains an elusive figure among New York artists of the early 20th century. He is known for his serene fauvist-style paintings and fantastical scenes of forest and marine wildlife, but many of his works are lost; some are documented only through old photographs. 

A conference this month at the Vizcaya Museum and Gardens in Miami, the setting of one of his most outlandish masterworks, may answer some questions.

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Christie’s will sell a number of pieces from the collection of Jan Krugier, an art dealer who sold works for Pablo Picasso’s family. The sale will include over 150 lots and is expected to garner at least $170 million. The sale, A Dialogue Through Art: Works from the Jan Krugier Collection, will take place on November 4-5, 2013 at the auction house’s New York location.

Krugier, who died in 2008, was one of the leading dealers in premier 20th century art for four decades. He operated galleries in Geneva and New York and exhibited at highly anticipated art fairs including Art Basel in Switzerland and TEFAF Masstricht in the Netherlands. Krugier’s Manhattan gallery closed in 2010 and his company no longer participates in fairs.

A Dialogue Through Art will present 30 works by Picasso including a maquette for the 65-foot sculpture Tete, which is located in Chicago. The work is expected to sell for $25 million to $35 million and is the most valuable piece in the sale. Other highlights include a bronze sculpture by Alberto Giacometti made for the Venice Biennale, which is expected to sell for $9 million to $12 million; a Fauvist period landscape by Wassily Kandinsky, which carries a $20 million to $25 million estimate; and a 1982 painting by Jean-Michel Basquiat, which is expected to sell for $3 million to $4 million.

A selection of works from the upcoming sale will be on view at Christie’s headquarters in London through September 19, 2013.

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One of the most significant artists of the 20th century, Henri Matisse (1869–1954) is best known for his use of color and fluid, innovative forms. A leading figure in modern art, the French artist defined the Fauvist movement, but defied classification. The works of Nicolas Poussin, Édouard Manet, Auguste Rodin, Paul Gauguin, Paul Cézanne, and Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin inspired Matisse and he communed with groundbreaking artists such as Camille Pissarro, André Derain, and Gertrude Stein.

 The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s exhibition Matisse: In Search of Painting opens on December 4 and explores the evolution of Matisse as a painter. Matisse worked rigorously, often painting the same scene and subject over and over again to gauge his own progress and compare various techniques, a process he developed during his academic training.

In Search of Painting features just 49 vibrant canvases but spans Matisse’s entire career. Organized by Rebecca Rabinow, a curator of modern and contemporary art, the exhibition places the works in pairs and groups by subject to illustrate Matisse’s methodical process. In the 1930s, Matisse began having photographs taken at various stages of each painting to document their evolution. Three of the finished canvases along with their accompanying photographs will also be on view. The juxtaposition illustrates Matisse’s own self-awareness and the arduous process that led to each finished canvas.

Matisse: In Search of Painting will be on view through March 17, 2013.

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Beginning on November 13, Doyle New York will start auctioning select works from the Spanierman Gallery, one of the Upper East Side’s foremost American art galleries. Founded by Ira Spanierman in the 1960s, the Spanierman Gallery has played an important role in the understanding and appreciation of American art from the colonial era through the 20th century. The gallery has also placed many iconic works in prominent public and private collections across the country.

As the Spanierman Gallery has decided to shift its focus to modern and contemporary American art, they will auction hundreds of works from their early American art collection at a number of select sales that will take place in 2012 and 2013. The November 13 auction will include thirty works including four pieces by John Henry Twachtman, the last fully bound sketchbook of studies by Maurice Prendergast not in a museum collection, and a double-sided work by Alfred Maurer that exemplifies the artist’s Fauvist palette.

Another 36 works from the Spanierman collection will be sold at Doyle’s American furniture, decorations, and 19th century painting sale on November 19.

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