New Arrivals: Rooskens

Anton Rooskens Congo 1954

Will be auctioned in the spring auction

Anton Rooskens (1906-1976)
Congo 1954
Gouache
38 x 48,5 cm
Signed and dated ’54 r.o ‘Voor Alice’
Herk. Collection Hans and Alice de Jong, auction Sotheby’s 2006.

The well-known Cobra artist Anton Rooskens was a welcome guest with the art collectors couple Hans and Alice de Jong. The artist is self-taught and exchanged his residence in Noord-Limburg for Amsterdam. He regularly attended exhibitions. The exhibition Kunst in Vrijheid organized in 1945 in the Rijksmuseum made a deep impression on him. For the first time he became acquainted with the ethnographic art of New Guinea. Inspired by tribal art, he painted in dark shapes and colors and expressive shapes. He met Corneille, Karel Appel and Eugène Brands. He shared with them his fascination for ethnographic African art. In 1954 he travels through Africa and also visits Congo. Finally he sees the tribal art in their original environment. A series of abstract compositions is created, including this gouache.

The gouache contains a dedication “For Alice", which refers to Alice de Jong, the wife of the Twente stocking manufacturer Hans de Jong. Together they collected an international art collection with a lot of attention for the Cobra. The couple often provided shelter to artists in Hengelo, Twente, and built up a friendly bond with them. Anton Rooskens was also a welcome guest. The gouache Congo also shows this with a dedication to Alice de Jong.

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