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Apr. 27, 2011

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Collectors flood into New York at the beginning of May, ready for the big auctions of 20th-century art at the major auction houses (launching this year with Sotheby's New York evening sale on Tuesday, May 3, 2011). Anticipating the influx of buyers, Manhattan's top galleries schedule their most alluring exhibitions to coincide with the sales.

First out of the gate in this regard is Helly Nahmad Gallery on Madison Avenue and East 76th Street, which opens "Soutine / Bacon" on Monday, May 2 (running to June 18, 2011). The exhibition of more than 30 works is designed to show Chaim Soutine's crucial impact on Francis Bacon, who shared the elder artist's fascination with beef carcasses, not to say his equation of oil pigments with flesh.

Organized by Maurice Tuchman and Esti Dunow, co-authors of the Chaim Soutine Catalogue Raisonné. the exhibition is the first major comparative exhibition of the two artists. It features works from private collections as well as loans from major museums, ranging from the Metropolitan Museum of Art to Tate Modern and the Albertina in Vienna. The show is accompanied by a catalogue boasting an illustrated chronology demonstrating the links between the two artists, and an afterword by Martin Hammer contextualizing Soutine's reception in post-war London.

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