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SAINT PHALLE, NIKI DE


* 29.10.1930 Neuilly-sur-Seine, † 21.5.2002 San Diego

Niki de Saint Phalle was born Cathérine Marie-Agnès Fal de Saint-Phalle in Neuilly-sur-Seine on 29 October 1930. Three years later she moved with her family to New York, where she attended the Sacré-Coeur convent school from 1936 to 1945. As a child she suffered serious abuse. At the age of eighteen, she married the American writer Harry Mathews, with whom she had two children.Before Niki de Saint Phalle turned to fine art, she worked successfully as a model and appeared on the covers of the most important fashion magazines such as ‘Vogue’ and ‘Life’ in the early 1950s.

After a nervous breakdown in 1953, Niki de Saint Phalle discovered painting as a form of therapy. She turned her back on the fashion world, left her husband and two children, moved to Paris, and devoted herself exclusively to art as a self-taught artist.The Swiss painter and sculptor Jean Tinguely, whom she met in the French capital in 1955 and married in 1971, inspired her and familiarised her with the quirks and challenges of sculpture. Thanks to Tinguely, Niki de Saint Phalle was introduced to the artists' group ‘Nouveau Réalisme’, which she joined in 1961.

She first became known for her ‘shooting pictures’. With her world-famous ‘Nana figures’, which appear almost childlike and were initially ridiculed by fellow artists, she achieved her artistic breakthrough in the mid-1960s. With her slogan ‘all power to the Nanas’, which she saw as heralding the beginnings of a matriarchy, Niki de Saint Phalle took up the ideas of the women's movement that were in the air at the time. The sensual female figures with their voluminous body shapes, which she first formed using wire and fabric, then polyester, initially caused an enormous scandal. Later, the colourful sculptures, which the artist designed as pieces of jewellery, snake chairs, vases, lamps, and perfume bottles, became a symbol of female self-confidence and strength.Niki de Saint Phalle invested a great deal of energy and money in the ‘Tarot Garden’, which she created not far from Rome over a 15-year period beginning in 1979. With this park, she created her largest and most important work of art. The park boasts 22 huge sculptures with mosaics, mirrors, coloured glass, and ceramic pieces embedded in a wonderfully green landscape. Together with Jean Tinguely, in 1983 she created the ‘Igor Stravinsky Fountain’ in front of the Pompidou Centre in Paris.Due to years of working with polyester, synthetic resin, dust, and toxic fumes, she became seriously ill with respiratory problems. Because of her asthma, her doctor ordered her to move to the mild Pacific climate of California in 1993. In San Diego, she began constructing kinetic sculptures, the ‘Meta-Tinguelys’. She dedicated this last large series of works to Jean Tinguely, who had died in 1991. Niki de Saint Phalle died in San Diego on 21 May 2002.


SIKART Lexikon zur Kunst in der Schweiz

Colette Guisolan-Dreyer, 2016 https://www.sikart.ch/kuenstlerinnen.aspx?id=4021948


Works from our auctions


Works by this artist from our auctions.

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Lot 3453 - A203 PostWar & Contemporary - Thursday 01 December 2022, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
L'Oiseau Amoureux. 1990/92.
Painted polyester.
Signed at the foot: Niki de Saint Phalle, as well as with the incised number and signature: 1/3 Niki de Saint Phalle. Furthermore with the foundry stamp: Haligon.
155 × 150 × 60 cm.

CHF 140 000 / 180 000 | (€ 144 330 / 185 570)

Sold for CHF 341 900 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3531 - Z23 Prints & Multiples - Friday 07 December 2007, 01.30 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Feuervogel. 1983.
Polyester bemalt, 2 / 7. Am Sockel Signaturstempel: Niki. Dazu Marke des Verlegers A. Haligon. Höhe 41 cm, Breite 44 cm, Tiefe 18,5 cm. Sehr schöner, einwandfreier Zustand.

CHF 50 000 / 80 000 | (€ 51 550 / 82 470)

Sold for CHF 84 000

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Lot 3455 - A203 PostWar & Contemporary - Thursday 01 December 2022, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
La conversation. 1991.
Casted resin, painted and lacquered.
With the stamped signature and number lower lateral: niki de saint phalle 17/20.
105 × 170 × 120 cm. Traces of ageing.

CHF 30 000 / 50 000 | (€ 30 930 / 51 550)

Sold for CHF 73 500 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3525 - Z24 Prints & Multiples - Friday 20 June 2008, 11.00 AM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Les Baigneurs. 1983.
Polyester bemalt. E.A. 10/10. Auf der Unterseite Signatur im Polyester eingelassen: Niki. Dazu Blindprägemarke des Verlegers: Haligon. Höhe 47 cm. Sehr schöner Zustand.

CHF 65 000 / 80 000 | (€ 67 010 / 82 470)

Sold for CHF 66 000

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Lot 3454 - A203 PostWar & Contemporary - Thursday 01 December 2022, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Fauteuil Dos à Dos. 1993.
Resin, painted.
Signed and numbered on a label on a foot: 12/20 Niki de Saint Phalle.
170 × 88 × 71 cm.

CHF 30 000 / 50 000 | (€ 30 930 / 51 550)

Sold for CHF 64 960 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3446 - A185 PostWar & Contemporary - Saturday 30 June 2018, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
L’oiseau amoureux. Circa 1980.
Resin, painted. Unique work.
42.5 x 40 x 17 cm.

CHF 40 000 / 60 000 | (€ 41 240 / 61 860)

Sold for CHF 46 100 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3701 - Z41 Prints & Multiples - Saturday 03 December 2016, 03.30 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Faucon bleu.
1980.
Lamp. Painted resin, metall and light bulps. Signed and numbered on the base: NIKI 4/8, also with the foundry stamp at the backside of the left foot: Mark R. Haligon. Height 69 cm.
71 x 39,5 x 19,5 cm.

CHF 20 000 / 30 000 | (€ 20 620 / 30 930)

Sold for CHF 43 700 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3100 - Z20 Swiss Art - Friday 23 June 2006, 03.30 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Sagittaire (Sternzeichen Schütze). 1993.
Sagittaire Vase. Stahl, Kunstharz und Keramik, teils mit Acrylfarben bemalt, teils vergoldet. Exemplar E.A. 8/10. Auf einem an der Innenseite der Skulptur eingelassenen Goldplättchen signiert: Niki de Saint Phalle. Höhe 60 cm, Länge: 67 cm. In sehr gutem Zustand.

CHF 8 000 / 12 000 | (€ 8 250 / 12 370)

Sold for CHF 40 460

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Lot 3669 - A199 Prints & Multiples - Thursday 02 December 2021, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Nana Vase. 1984.
Multiple. Polyester resin, painted. 2/150. With the incised signature and number on the underside: Niki 2/150. Also on the underside with the foundary stamp: HALIGON. Measurements 47 × 30 × 30 cm.

CHF 15 000 / 20 000 | (€ 15 460 / 20 620)

Sold for CHF 34 460 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3344 - Z32 PostWar & Contemporary - Friday 22 June 2012, 05.25 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Le Taureau. 1990.
Bemaltes Polyester. Exemplar 42/50.
Auf Plakette an der Unterseite mit geritzter Signatur, Nummerierung und Giesserstempel Haligon.
39,9 x 63 x 27,9 cm.

CHF 20 000 / 30 000 | (€ 20 620 / 30 930)

Sold for CHF 33 600

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Lot 3335 - Z17 Prints & Multiples - Wednesday 08 December 2004, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Le Chat. 1986.
Keramik (Résine) bemalt. Multiple 5 / 50. Auf dem Boden in einer Metallplatte signiert und nummeriert: Niki de Saint Phalle, 5 / 50. Höhe 33.5 cm, Länge 41 cm, Breite 22,2 cm. Mit einer Vertiefung in der Rückenpartie der Katze, darin eingelegt eine kleine Keramikvase. Sehr schöner, neuwertiger Zustand der Skulptur.

CHF 20 000 / 28 000 | (€ 20 620 / 28 870)

Sold for CHF 30 940

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Lot 3532 - Z23 Prints & Multiples - Friday 07 December 2007, 01.30 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Le chameau.
Polyester bemalt. Zwei kleine Tonvasen, inwändig glasiert, in der Figur eingelassen. Exemplar 43 / 50. Auf der Unterseite in eingelassenem Metalplättchen signiert: Niki de Saint Phalle. Dazu Giessermarke. Höhe 25,5 cm, Länge 40 cm. Sehr schöner Zustand.

CHF 17 000 / 25 000 | (€ 17 530 / 25 770)

Sold for CHF 30 000

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Lot 3668 - A199 Prints & Multiples - Thursday 02 December 2021, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Les baigneurs. 1980/81.
Multiple. Polyester resin, painted. 3/150. Signed on the backside of the pedestal: Niki de Saint Phalle. Measurements 46 × 48 × 26 cm.

CHF 7 000 / 9 000 | (€ 7 220 / 9 280)

Sold for CHF 29 580 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3700 - A187 Prints & Multiples - Saturday 08 December 2018, 10.30 AM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Nana Vase. 1984.
Polyester, painted. 110/150. On the underside with the artist's stamp: Niki. 48 x 39 x 29 cm. Casted by Haligon (on the underside with the stamp).

CHF 17 000 / 22 000 | (€ 17 530 / 22 680)

Sold for CHF 26 900 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3754* - Z38 Prints & Multiples - Saturday 27 June 2015, 03.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
California Nana. 1999.
Multiple. Keramik bemalt. 129/150. Auf der Unterseite signiert: Niki de Saint Phalle, sowie mit dem Stempel: GERARD HALIGON. Höhe 34 cm. Herausgegeben Gerhard Haligon.

CHF 20 000 / 30 000 | (€ 20 620 / 30 930)

Sold for CHF 26 900

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Lot 3435 - Z35 PostWar & Contemporary - Saturday 07 December 2013, 04.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
La fontaine aux quatre nanas. 1988/90.
Bemaltes Polyester.
Auf der Unterseite in einer Plakette mit dem eingeritzten Namen: Niki de Saint Phalle. Exemplar 57/150.
51 x 47 x 14 cm.

CHF 18 000 / 24 000 | (€ 18 560 / 24 740)

Sold for CHF 23 400

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Lot 3621 - Z29 Prints & Multiples - Friday 03 December 2010, 10.00 AM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Schützenbild.
Multiple 10 / 100. Ballone und Farbe auf Gips in einer offenen Holzkassette. Verso mit dem Etikett der édition MAT, auf diesem die Signatur der Künstlerin sowie die Nummerierung. Zudem verso mit der Gebrauchsanweisung. 72 x 54 x 7 cm.

CHF 4 000 / 6 000 | (€ 4 120 / 6 190)

Sold for CHF 22 800

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Lot 3667 - A199 Prints & Multiples - Thursday 02 December 2021, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Elephant Vase. 1986.
Multiple. Polyester resin, painted. 11/50. With the incised signature on a metal plate on the underside: Niki de Saint-Phalle. Also with the foundery stamp on the underside: HALIGON. Measurements 30.5 × 49 × 23 cm.

CHF 18 000 / 22 000 | (€ 18 560 / 22 680)

Sold for CHF 22 260 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3445 - A185 PostWar & Contemporary - Saturday 30 June 2018, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Serpent.
Resin, painted.
With incised signature and number on the base: Niki 5/7.
Height 23.8 cm (incl. base).

CHF 10 000 / 15 000 | (€ 10 310 / 15 460)

Sold for CHF 19 700 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3658 - A185 Prints & Multiples - Saturday 30 June 2018, 10.30 AM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE & JEAN TINGUELY

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego) (Fribourg 1925–1991 Bern)
Nana Machine. 1976.
Multiple. Resin, painted on a steel base and electric engine. From an edition of 150. Height 43.8 cm.
Hight 43.8 cm.

CHF 18 000 / 24 000 | (€ 18 560 / 24 740)

Sold for CHF 19 700 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3683 - A203 Prints & Multiples - Thursday 01 December 2022, 10.00 AM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
L'arbre de vie. 1991.
Multiple. Colour screenprint on metall, painted resin, gold leaf and oxidated iron. 52/75. With the incised signature on the backside: Niki de Saint Phalle. Measurements 66.5 × 37.5 × 30 cm. Published by Art Multi and Editions Sedcome, Paris. Published for the anniversary of the declaration of human rights.

CHF 12 000 / 18 000 | (€ 12 370 / 18 560)

Sold for CHF 17 380 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.

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Lot 3523A - Z24 Prints & Multiples - Friday 20 June 2008, 11.00 AM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Saggitaire (Sternzeichen Schütze). 1993.
Zweiteiliges Multiple mit Vase, 28/50. Roher Stahl, Polyester und Keramik, teils mit eingebrannten Lackfarben bemalt. An der Innenseite der Vasen-Hohlform auf einem eingelassenen Goldplättchen signiert: Niki de Saint Phalle. Dazu Blindpräge-Marke des Verlegers Halligon. Höhe 60 cm, Länge 67 cm. Sehr schöner Zustand.

CHF 14 000 / 20 000 | (€ 14 430 / 20 620)

Sold for CHF 15 600

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Lot 3523 - Z24 Prints & Multiples - Friday 20 June 2008, 11.00 AM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Jean. Um 1980.
Originalentwurf und Serigraphie. Original Tusche und Aquarell auf Papier, teilweise mit handschriftlichen Angaben zur Farbgebung. Serigraphie auf Kunstdruckpapier. Beide Bilder mit identischen Massen 65 x 50 cm. Gerahmt

CHF 14 000 / 20 000 | (€ 14 430 / 20 620)

Sold for CHF 14 400

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Lot 3294 - Z16 Prints & Multiples - Wednesday 23 June 2004, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Nana oiseau. 1992.
Resine-Guss 6 / 99. Farbfassung mit Lackfarben. Auf Unterseite in Gussplatte signiert: Niki de Saint Phalle. Dazu Reliefstempel des Verlegers O. Haligon d' Art.. Höhe: 20,2 cm. Sehr schöner Zustand.

CHF 3 000 / 5 000 | (€ 3 090 / 5 150)

Sold for CHF 10 115

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Lot 3295 - Z16 Prints & Multiples - Wednesday 23 June 2004, 02.00 PM

NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE

(Neuilly-sur-Seine 1930–2002 San Diego)
Petite Nana oiseau. 1988.
Resine-Guss 27 / 99. Farbliche Fassung mit Mattlack. Auf Unterseite in Gussplatte signiert: Niki de Saint Phalle. Dazu Reliefstempel des Verlegers: O. Haligon d'Art. Höhe 13 cm. Sehr schöner Zustand.

CHF 2 800 / 3 500 | (€ 2 890 / 3 610)

Sold for CHF 10 115

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