Painter István Sándorfi Added To The Gallery Collection

Winn Slavin Fine Art in collaboration with Jane Kahan Gallery in New York welcomes the addition of Hyperrealist Painter Istvan Sandorfi to the gallery. 

István Sándorfi, also known as Étienne Sandorfi, was a French/Hungarian naturalist painter. He received his formal art education at École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts and at École nationale supérieure des arts décoratifs in Paris. He mastered what art critics now term hyperrealism, but he did so with his very own blend of surrealistic elements. He got introduced to oil painting at the age of 12, since then he dedicated much of his life to perfecting his painting techniques in order to achieve the photoreal and at the same time pull the carpet away under the viewer by letting part of a person disappear in thin air. He was reclusive, mostly working at night. He kept the contact with galleries and collectors to the bare minimum, only enough to make ends meet. In the beginnings he survived by making illustrations for advertisements and portrait commissions. 

About his Art

Although he had reached international acclaim by the 1970’s, he cracked the code after the 1980’s. Before then he did self portraits. But these were somewhat tormented and left gallery owners with an ambivalent feelling. On one hand they knew they were dealing with a great artist but on the other they had to accept displaying the works of someone with a very limited audience indeed. In the 1980’s he started to use more cold blues, greens and violets. This created a delicate but psychologically charged palette as contrasted with beige and orange. The artist applied a single strong source of semi-diffused grey daylight and reflective light: a simple arrangement to give the scenes documentary authenticity. By the late 1980’s the subject matters were increasingly women mixed in unusual poses with parts secluded or entirely missing.

Drapery and runny paint was used as illusionary cue points to his partially disappearing parts. This never had the character of mutilation of the figures. No rather, what we’re left with is a poetic take fleeting moment of us being a human beings. The pictures are riddles. The studio, the painting medium, and various props are deliberately fused together in compositions of beauty and melancholy. Along with depicting the human, it is almost as much paintings about painting in a way.


Anne Aux Yeux Clos
Oil on canvas
51 1/8 in x 35 in


L’Angelus de Nepharene
Oil on Canvas
76 3/4 in x 44 7/8 in

Oil on canvas
63 3/4 in x 38 1/4 in

La Douleur du Gaucher
Oil on canvas
45 5/8 in x 35 in

Le Repos d’Amelie
Oil on canvas
59 in x 59 in

Hommage à Nepharen

Oil on canvas

59 in x 63 in

La Percee d’Isophobe
Oil on canvas
59 in x 59 in