There are several expert
works validating this work by Kupka available - one expertise is by Dr.
Jana Orlíková, second by Dr. Marie Pospíšilová, there are also two
Assessments of the date of origin based on the paint analysis (one is by
Ing. B. Čtverák, CSc., second one by Ms. Dorotea Pechová).
Our own expert when
evaluating this work by František Kupka had considered both
possibilities –that it is either his work dating to 1890, or his work
made to custom at around 1920 (Kupka has often undertaken such custom
work in order to make living), our expert after long consideration
believed it to be more likely the latter case.
Considering that František
Kupka’s realistic period does not have a specialist expert we have asked
for assessment the well known art expert Dr. Jana Orlíková, who is very
meticulous and always devotes an enormous amount of time and attention
to the work of art in question.
In her expertise dated 6.
9. 2012 Dr. Jana Orlíková states: „ In my opinion the painting in
question „In a Café“ is an original work by František Kupka. It belongs
to his first phase of painting, when he was virtually untaught. It
brilliantly shows how quickly he matured and how he learned to manage
group compositions with more figures as well as their interactions. As
far as the actual signature is considered I cannot rule out that is has
been added at a later date. This signature is characteristic of Kupka
and it’s first
appearance as well as dating is well documented on the painting Nude
from 1896 (National Gallery, Prague, inventory no. O9126). However, this
painting is already mature, perfect work by this painter.
The second Expertise
(Expertise no. 3783) is by expert and art historian Dr. Marie
Pospíšilová. She also places this painting into the period of
1880/1890. Citation from her Expertise: „It is an exceptional example of
a painting with a rich figural composition from Kupka’s very early
period. I cannot think of another such an example – that is what makes
this painting so exceptional.“
There are also two
Assessments of date of origin based on paint analysis.
The first one by Ing. B.
Čtverák, CSc. is based on non-destructive method of rentgeno-fluorescent
analysis (RFA). The conclusion of this assessment was that the painting
„In a Café”was painted during the period of 1920 – 1940, during Kupka’s
lifetime, however later than the two Expertises assumed.
The second assessment was
chemical analysis of two paint samples taken from the actual painting.
Ms. Pechová then in her laboratory report states that due to occurrence
of some white pigments it is most likely that the painting was painted
after 1920 (or after 1925).
Considering that it is very
interesting work of art which is very difficult to evaluate properly we
have decided to take it to the market with this conclusion: we have
included in the auction oil on cardboard „In a Café“, signed Kupka. We
are convinced that it is an original work by František Kupka. It is a
beautiful figural scene almost in the style of Lautrec. A certain level
of stupor is typical of Kupka’s early works, it can also be taken as
„snapshot“ made to custom in Kupka’s later period. The low calling price
reflects our current level of knowledge. Potential buyer will be able to
agree adequate time to consult this work with his/her experts.