Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Ronald Searle: C'est la vie

A neckless and nearly formless man strains to pull a cart bearing a large pig across a vast, desolate plain. The title gives it away. C'est la vie is Ronald Searle's humorous allegory of life itself. The 1975 original ink and watercolor drawing was sold in Frankfurt on November 25 for a ridiculously low 300 euros (and that was after the sale ended, I believe). That Moderne-Auktion crowd just didn't appreciate a good allegory.

Ronald Searle
Auktionshaus Arnold listing accessed November 16, 2023

A variant was exhibited in New York at the Nicholls Gallery in 1976. It appeared on a black and white postcard promoting the Searle show. The original art either has wash or some watercolor.

C'est la vie, 1975
Ronald Searle
Nicholls Gallery postcard, 1976

Note:  You know, I wouldn't mind receiving a good photograph of the Nicholls Gallery variant or of any other variants of C'est la vie that might be out there. Oh, who am I kidding? I'd love to see any Ronald Searle original art.


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