Sale: 545 / Evening Sale, Dec. 08. 2023 in Munich Lot 35


Yves Klein
Peinture de Feu Coleur, sans titre,(FC 11), Um 1961.
Mixed media. Pure pigment and synthetic resin a...
Post auction sale: € 400,000 / $ 420,000
Peinture de Feu Coleur, sans titre,(FC 11). Um 1961.
Mixed media. Pure pigment and synthetic resin and traces offire on paper. On paper, laid on canvas.
22.5 x 36 cm (8.8 x 14.1 in).
Further works from the Ahlers Collection are offered in our Contemporary Art Day Sale on Friday, December 8 and in our Modern Art Day Sale on Saturday, December 9, 2023. An overview of the works you will find on our auction catalogue "32 works from the Ahlers Collection".

• The combination of Fire Picture and Anthropometry is of utmost rarity in his oeuvre.
• The present work belongs to the group "Color Fire Pictures", the last series of works created before his much too early death.
• The current catalogue raisonné by Paul Wember mentions only two other comparable works.
• From the collection of Pontus Hultén, one of the most important exhibition organizers and museum founders of the 20th century (Moderna Museet, Stockholm and Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris).
• Comparable works are extremely rare on the international auction market (source:
• From the Ahlers Collection

PROVENANCE: Pontus Hultén, Paris.
Margareta Leijonhufvud, Sweden.
Galerie Reckermann, Cologne.
Corporate Collection Ahlers AG, Herford (since 2005, acquired from the above).

EXHIBITION: Yves Klein - Der Sprung ins Leere: Pretiosen des Nouveau Réalisme, Foundation Ahlers Pro Arte / Kestner Pro Arte, February 28 - July 1, 2006, and Museum Moderner Kunst Foundation Wörlen, Passau, July 22 - September 24, 2006 (no cat.).
Les Livres de Vie: Eva Aeppli und ihre Künstlerfreunde, Kunstmuseum Solothurn, August 26 - November 05, 2006, accompanying booklet no. 51, p. 25 (no fig.).
Nouveau Réalisme, Galeries nationales du Grand Palais, Paris, March 28 - July 2, 2007/ Nouveau Réalisme: Revolution des Alltäglichen, Sprengel Museum Hanover, September 9, 2007 - January 27, 2008, cat. no. 31, p. 70 (fig.) and 318.
Nouveau Réalisme, Kunsthalle Krems, Krems-Stein, November 21, 2010 - February 20, 2011 (no cat.).
Depicting Women - beauty, goddess, motherhood, bathing, soliciting, fulfilling, fragment", Foundation Ahlers Pro Arte, Herford, September 15 - December 9, 2018, cat. no. 73, p. 87 and p. 73 (fig.).
Aggregatzustände. Das Material der Kunst - von Abfall bis Zement, Sprengel Museum Hanover, from November 6, 2019, cat. no. 29.

LITERATURE: Paul Wember, Yves Klein. Werkverzeichnis, Biographie, Bibliographie, Ausstellungsverzeichnis, Cologne 1969, no. FC 11, p. 135 (with illu. in black and white).

Yves Klein - New Realist and Avant-Gardist
Thanks to his extraordinary creative output and visionary ingenuity, as well as for his pioneering accomplishments in performance and conceptual art, Yves Klein is widely considered the most influential French artist of the 1950s and 1960s. Along with Arman and Jean Tinguely, Yves Klein was a member of the loose group of artists known as "Nouveau Réalisme" around the art critic Pierre Restany. They clearly turned against the abstract and informal painting prevailing in the early 1960s. The "New Realists" left the studios to create art in the streets. Using new techniques and found materials, they aimed to integrate everyday life reality into art, making considerable contributions to the development of Object Art and early Action Art. The body of work that Yves Klein created in a short period of only seven years includes legendary artworks such as monochrome paintings, sponge sculptures, rain paintings, fire paintings, and body prints. He was a conceptual artist even before the term existed. For him, it is not the subjective handwriting of the painter, but the individual expressiveness of pure color that should determine the work. Monochrome liberated him from the conventional easel painting and gave him the possibility to make the immaterial and the infinite tangible as a kind of sublime experience.

La Peinture du Feu
The genesis of Klein's remarkable fire paintings lies in his occupation of the immateriality. Both in the fire paintings, as well as in the "Cosmogonies" in which he showed the imprint of rain and wind on the canvas in the early 1960s, the artist summoned the elements of nature to manifest their creative power. The series "Peinture du Feu Couleur", which evolved from the "Peintures du Feu", was created in the last year of the artist's life. These works are the synthesis of Klein's diverse, transcendent and highly influential oeuvre. Probably about 30 works belong to this small series of works. Yves Klein merged the pure fire paintings with his "Anthropométries" techniques by printing traces of the human body on the burnt surfaces. Color also played an increasingly important role: shades of pink and blue swim through the fiery depths of his works. The element of fire has been part of his oeuvre since 1957, when he set fire to one of his monochrome paintings at an exhibition at Galerie Colette Allendy, addressing the symbolism of regeneration and transformation. In early 1961, on the occasion of his first retrospective exhibition at Museum Haus Lange in Krefeld, Klein presented his Fire Fountains and the Fire Wall. These works, consisting of huge vertically blazing blue flames and a wall of flames created with a number of Bunsen burners in a row, theatrically illuminated the museum's gardens at dusk. Klein recognized the elemental power of fire. In the laboratory of Gaz de France, a French gas supply company based in La Plaine Saint-Denis, where he had access to industrial equipment, he learned to master fire and made precise adjustments to harness its force. With the 'Peinture de feu', Yves Klein created a pure image of the element fire. He did not invent these images. He took them directly from the fire.

In the further development of his pure fire pictures, Yves Klein revisited elements from previous work series. Thus, his famous "International Klein Blue" (IKB) can be found in the color fire paintings, as well as human body forms from the "Anthropométrie" series, named after the study of human body measurements. In this well-known series of works, Klein used female models as "living brushes." The bodies, soaked in paint, are pressed onto or pulled across the canvas. Thus, the artist himself did not touch the canvas and did not become active as a painter in the conventional sense. The paintings are usually created in a performance in front of a live audience. Probably the most legendary performance took place at the Galerie Internationale d'Art Contemporain in Paris on March 9, 1960, in front of a fascinated, astonished, but also shocked audience. This performance would manifest Yves Klein's reputation as a provocateur. The happening was accompanied by an orchestra playing the "Monotone Symphony" composed by Klein, while three nude models painted one another with the intense ultramarine blue "International Klein Blue" (IKB) that Klein and the chemist Edouard Adam had developed four years. They then pressed their bodies onto the canvas according to the artist's instructions. It is the culmination of his artworks, which he calls "Anthropometries," in which he took the distancing from the canvas that he had promoted to an extreme, while at the same time making "bodily contact with the most incorporeal of colors possible." The Fire Paintings represent the final step in his sublimating transition from the material to the spiritual. [SM]

Yves Klein
Peinture de Feu Coleur, sans titre,(FC 11), Um 1961.
Mixed media. Pure pigment and synthetic resin a...
Post auction sale: € 400,000 / $ 420,000


Buyer's premium, taxation and resale right compensation for Yves Klein "Peinture de Feu Coleur, sans titre,(FC 11)"
This lot can be subjected to differential taxation plus a 7% import tax levy (saving approx. 5 % compared to regular taxation) or regular taxation, artist‘s resale right compensation is due.

Differential taxation:
Hammer price up to 800,000 €: herefrom 32 % premium.
The share of the hammer price exceeding 800,000 € is subject to a premium of 27 % and is added to the premium of the share of the hammer price up to 800,000 €.
The share of the hammer price exceeding 4,000,000 € is subject to a premium of 22 % and is added to the premium of the share of the hammer price up to 4,000,000 €.
The buyer's premium contains VAT, however, it is not shown.

Regular taxation:
Hammer price up to 800,000 €: herefrom 27 % premium.
The share of the hammer price exceeding 800,000 € is subject to a premium of 21% and is added to the premium of the share of the hammer price up to 800,000 €.
The share of the hammer price exceeding 4,000,000 € is subject to a premium of 15% and is added to the premium of the share of the hammer price up to 4,000,000 €.
The statutory VAT of currently 19 % is levied to the sum of hammer price and premium. As an exception, the reduced VAT of 7 % is added for printed books.

We kindly ask you to notify us before invoicing if you wish to be subject to regular taxation.

Calculation of artist‘s resale right compensation:
For works by living artists, or by artists who died less than 70 years ago, a artist‘s resale right compensation is levied in accordance with Section 26 UrhG:
4 % of hammer price from 400.00 euros up to 50,000 euros,
another 3 % of the hammer price from 50,000.01 to 200,000 euros,
another 1 % for the part of the sales proceeds from 200,000.01 to 350,000 euros,
another 0.5 % for the part of the sale proceeds from 350,000.01 to 500,000 euros and
another 0.25 % of the hammer price over 500,000 euros.
The maximum total of the resale right fee is EUR 12,500.

The artist‘s resale right compensation is VAT-exempt.