Latin American Art at Sotheby’s: “Cortadores de Caña” by Anonymous

As I was reading about the big exhibition and sale of Latin American Art at Sotheby’s in New York, I couldn’t help but notice with fascination, one of their anonymous 19th century works: “Cortadores de Caña” [Sugar-Cane Cutters, shown above]. Sotheby’s writes: “The 19th century paintings in the sale are led by Cortadores de Caña by an anonymous painter from circa 1880 (est. $150/200,000). Sugar fueled the Caribbean economy of the time, yet there are few pictorial representations of these agricultural activities, making this a rare as well as superbly composed painting.” It is made me think of the dearth of specialists in Latin American art and, indeed, Caribbean art, and made me very curious about their speculations about the origins of paintings like these. Theories anyone?

The Latin American Art at Sotheby’s exhibition dates are November 12-15 from 10:00am to 5:00pm and November 16, from 10:00am to 1:00pm. The sales take place on November 16 at 7:00pm and November 17 at 10:00am. Sotheby’s is located at 1334 York Avenue, New York, New York.

Besides those intriguing anonymous pieces, works include paintings by greats such as Rufino Tamayo (Mexico), Alfredo Ramos Martínez (Mexico), Emiliano Di Cavalcanti (Brazil), Robert Matta (Chile), Claudio Bravo (Chile), Carlos Cruz-Diez (Venezuela), Gego (Gertrude Goldschmidt, Venezuela), Jesús Rafael Soto (Venezuela), and Wifredo Lam (Cuba).

For more information, contact Carmen Melian at, Axel Stein at, or Andrea Zorrilla at The department telephone number is (212) 606 7513 and the bid department’s is (212) 606-7414.

For catalogues and subscriptions, contact (212) 606-7000 or write to

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For their website, see

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