Highlights of the CENTURY MODERN ART & DESIGN AUCTION May 23, 2021 1
Highlights of the 20th CENTURY MODERN ART & DESIGN AUCTION Featuring the collection of Joni and Monte Gordon
Auction May 23, 2021 12pm (PT) Preview May 14–22, 2021 10am–6pm (PT) By appointment only 16145 Hart Street Van Nuys, CA 91406
This is not the full catalogue for the auction. This summary is provided as a courtesy. Please visit our website for the full lot descriptions, the Conditions of Sale, and other important information regarding the auction.
20th CENTURY MODERN ART & DESIGN Highlights of the May 23, 2021 Auction 20th Century Modern Art & Design Featuring the collection of Joni and Monte Gordon The full auction catalogue is available online at lamodern.com. All lots will be viewable in-person at the LAMA Showroom from May 14–22, 2021 10am-6pm, by appointment only.
LAMA's May 23, 2021 20th Century Modern Art & Design Auction proudly offers more than 200 works of Modern and contemporary art and design, including a selection from the personal collection of Joni and Monte Gordon. Celebrated for nurturing the careers of emerging artists, Joni Gordon left an indelible mark on the LA art scene through her commitment as gallerist, collector, and co-founder the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art. Among the highlights from the Gordon Collection are a Claes Oldenburg “Colossal Monuments” study, painting and assemblage by Gordon mentor Betty Parsons, and works on paper by Betye and Alison Saar. The auction also features significant works by Mark Bradford, Sam Francis, Joe Goode, Keith Haring, David Hockney, George Rickey, Ed Ruscha, Linda Stark, Frank Stella, George Nakashima, Masami Teraoka, and many more.
Stunned by Beauty: The Enduring Legacy of Joni Gordon “I try to keep that innocence and capacity to be moved by art every day.” —Joni Gordon Celebrated for nurturing the careers of emerging artists, Joni Gordon (1936–2012) left an indelible mark on the LA art scene through her commitment as gallerist, collector, and co-founder of the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art. LAMA is proud to present a selection of 30 works from the personal collection she built along with her husband Monte, many by artists whose careers Gordon personally championed, among them Martha Alf (lot 86), Tony Berlant (lot 101), Llyn Foulkes (lot 100), Joe Goode (lot 45), and Ed Ruscha (lots 121 and 122). In lieu of any formal training, Gordon was equipped with the steadfast conviction that she needed to live a life surrounded by art. In the fall of 1975, she renewed a failing storefront gallery on Melrose Avenue practically overnight. On the eve of her 39th birthday, Gordon purchased Newspace (named for its original location in Newport Beach) from painter Jean St. Pierre, a UC Irvine student who opened the collectively run gallery several years before. The rent was $200. “People were stunned,” Gordon recalled of her decision, “I mean, absolutely stunned.” After first mounting a show of St. Pierre’s white paintings and selling them all, Gordon continued to transform Newspace into a reputable resource for artists and collectors alike, later dubbed “an incubator for Los Angeles’ contemporary art scene.” As Los Angeles County Museum of Art curator Carol S. Eliel remembers, “[Gordon] had quite an eye, and was able to pick [artists] out of a crowd when others hadn’t started focusing on them yet.” While Gordon’s role as a dealer may have initially seemed unexpected, she had in fact been honing her vocation since childhood. “I was kind of stunned by beauty at a very, very early age,” she remembered, “I would even, as a child, feel the sensation of beauty or art.” As a teenager, Gordon scraped together her money from working at summer camps to make a pilgrimage to New York after reading the 1950 LIFE Magazine featuring Jackson Pollock and Betty Parsons. Years later, Gordon would meet her “all-time hero” Parsons in-person and represent the artist-gallerist in Los Angeles.
It wasn’t until Gordon’s studies at the University of California, Los Angeles that her predilection for art was given the space to grow into a profession. She found herself drawn over and over to the university’s art building where she could observe emerging artists — Vija Celmins and Richard Diebenkorn among them — first-hand. Part-time positions at both Esther Robles and Felix Landau Galleries further familiarized her with the city’s art landscape, and Gordon just kept going deeper. A chance encounter with Robert Smith lead to their founding of the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art, and a subsequent errand for LAICA brought Gordon to Jean St. Pierre's doorstep, making for Newspace. As a gallerist, Gordon’s “first devotion was to Los Angeles painting and sculpture.” It was Newspace where now-renowned artists including Chris Burden and Paul McCarthy had some of their earliest shows. Describing her own taste, Gordon explained “I look at art intuitively, with a bias on beauty, classicism, clarity, skills, and originality. I am independent.” Gordon’s independence and fearless efforts to push the envelope helped define the creative spirit of Los Angeles for decades to come. Gordon herself put it simply: “My task is to keep inventing possibilities and potential in art.” “Joni Gordon 33 Years at Newspace, 1973-2006: Good to go/Interview, part 1 of 4.” Vernissage TV. October 17, 2006. Accessed April 15, 2021. https://vernissage. tv/2006/10/17/joni-gordon33-years-at-newspace-19732006-good-to-go-interviewpart-14/ Kapitanoff, Nancy. “An Intuitive Exhibition: Galley owner
Joni Gordon has chose works by 37 artists for a SITE Juried Show in Woodland Hills.” Los Angeles Times. September 24, 1993. Oral history interview with Joni Gordon, 2002 July 8-September 23. Smithsonian Archives of American Art. Accessed April 15, 2021. https:// www.aaa.si.edu/collections/ interviews/oral-history-inter-
view-joni-gordon-12888#transcript Woo, Elaine. “Joni Gordon dies at 75; Newspace gallery owner nurtured L.A. art.” Los Angeles Times. Accessed April 15, 2021. https://www.latimes. com/local/obituaries/la-xpm2012-sep-21-la-me-joni-gordon-20120921-story.html
LOT 10 CLAES OLDENBURG
Study for Colossal Monuments: Lunch Box Contents on the Islands of the Upper Bay (Bedloes, Ellis, Governor) 1965 Watercolor and crayon on paper Initialed and dated “CO 1965” in graphite lower right; signed and dated verso; retains Museum of Contemporary Art, Leo Castelli Gallery, Sidney Janis Gallery, two Margo Leavin Gallery, and Centro Internazionale delle Arti e del Costume labels frame verso
Composition/sheet: 26.125" x 40" Frame: 31.75" x 45.75" (Composition/sheet: 66 x 102 cm) PROVE N A N CE Sidney Janis Gallery, New York, New York; Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, New York; Margo Leavin Gallery, Los Angeles, California; The Collection of Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above through Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, MOCArt Auction ‘88, 1988)
E XHIBIT E D “Campo Vitale,” Centro Internazionale delle Arti e del Costume, Palazzo Grassi, Venice, July-October, 1967
LOT 104 BETYE SAAR
To Catch a Unicorn 1960 Etching and aquatint on paper #5 of 20 Published and printed by the artist, Los Angeles Signed and dated in graphite lower right margin of sheet; edition lower center; titled lower left
Image: 14.75" x 8" Sheet: 16.625" x 9" Frame: 22.125" x 16.25" (Image: 37 x 20 cm) P ROV E NANC E The Collection of Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles, California
LOT 156 BETTY PARSONS Sea Parthenon
1980 Acrylic on wood construction Signed, titled, and dated in black felttip marker verso; retains Newspace Gallery label and unknown information label verso 21.5" x 26.5" x 2" (55 x 67 x 5 cm) P ROVENANC E The Collection of Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles, California EXHIBITE D “Betty Parsons: Paintings and Sculpture,” Newspace Gallery, Los Angeles, May 6-May 31, 1980; “Joni Gordon 33 Years at Newspace, 19732006: ‘Good to Go,’” Newspace Gallery, Los Angeles, September 16-December 16, 2006
LOT 155 BETTY PARSONS Across the Street 1979 Oil on canvas Titled and dated to canvas stretcher bar verso; stamped “Betty Parsons” to canvas stretcher bar verso; signed to top facing edge of canvas 64" x 20" (163 x 51 cm) PROVE NANC E The Collection of Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles, California
LOT 4 FRANK STELLA Untitled
1966 Graphite and colored pencil on graph paper Signed and dated in ink lower right Composition/sheet: 8.5" x 11" Frame: 12" x 14.5" (Composition/sheet: 22 x 28 cm) P ROVENA NC E The Collection of Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles, California
LOT 1 FRANK STELLA
The Funeral (Dome) (from Moby Dick Domes Series) 1992 Etching, aquatint, relief, and engraving on shaped TGL handmade, hand-colored paper
Signed and dated with edition in graphite lower right of sheet; retains Tyler Graphics blind stamp lower right corner Image/sheet: 72.5" x 54" x 6" Frame: 76.375" x 56" x 9" (Image/sheet: 184 x 137 x 15 cm) LIT E RAT URE Frank Stella
#6 of 23
Prints: A Catalogue Raisonné. R.
Published and printed by Tyler Graphics, Ltd., Mt. Kisco
Axsom and L. Kolb. 2016. #208.
A Shift in Perspective: The ‘Photographic Drawings’ of David Hockney When David Hockney (b. 1937) returned to Los Angeles from East Yorkshire in 2013, he quickly dedicated himself to a new body of work that would merge two of his greatest fascinations: the intricacies of perspective and evolving imaging technologies. Described by the artist as “photographic drawings” and constructed from hundreds of images, the resulting series pays homage to Paul Cézanne’s Card Players in a manner only Hockney could achieve. The works are at once fantastical and hyper-realist, historically informed and completely disruptive to the visual precedent of privileging a single vanishing point. Lot 152, The Scrabble Players, depicts the artist's friends at play and self-alludes to earlier works, showcasing Hockney's innovative approach. “Digital photography can free us from a chemically imposed perspective that has lasted for 180 years,” Hockney said of his embrace of the relatively recent medium. And while The Scrabble Players makes use of new technology, it can be considered an extension of Hockney’s practice both in terms
of subject matter and creation — his 1983 collage The Scrabble Game January 1, 1983 similarly shows the artist’s friends (and a cat) mid-Scrabble round. As with lot 152, this work is a composite of layered photographs which Hockney has referred to as a “joiner.” Both works deliberately destabilize the notion that a single viewpoint can truly encapsulate a moment in time. “What has been absorbing [Hockney] since he was a student in Bradford is this conundrum which preoccupies all painters,” Andrew Wilson, Tate Modern Senior Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, observed, “How do you represent the world of three or four dimensions, plus emotion, in two dimensions? This is the bedrock of his work.” Indeed, Hockney’s firm location in the realm between painting and photography has been critical to his status as beloved icon. Another early Hockney composite, the landscape montage Pearblossom Hwy., 11-18th April, 1986 #2, has been crowned “the most popular image at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.” In a winking gesture, Hockney even placed Pearblossom Hwy.
within the composition of lot 152’s fellow “photographic drawing,” A Bigger Card Players (2015). In addition to tireless exploration of new techniques, Hockney has defined himself through a refusal to alienate viewers. As Wilson put it, the artist’s eye “involves a real generosity towards the viewer,” adding that Hockney “wants people to be engaged with his work. He wants their eyes and feelings to be drawn to it.” In the case of lot 152, the invitation is expressed quite literally: as the Scrabble board and its players place the viewer as vanishing point — the alpha and omega of the game. What could be more inviting than that?
Crighton-Miller, Emma. “David Hockney and the joy of looking.” Prospect Magazine. January 19, 2017. Accessed April 15, 2021. https://www.prospectmagazine. co.uk/magazine/david-hockney-and-thejoy-of-looking “The Card Players.” David Hockney Foundation. Accessed April 15, 2021. https:// www.thedavidhockneyfoundation.org/ chronology/2015
LOT 152 DAVID HOCKNEY
The Scrabble Players 2015 Photographic drawing printed on paper and mounted on Dibond #6 of 25 Signed and dated lower right; edition lower left; retains unknown information label and L.A. Louver Gallery label frame verso Image/sheet: 42.25" x 42.25" Frame: 44.75" x 44.75" (Image/sheet: 107 x 107 cm) PROVE NANC E L.A. Louver Gallery, Venice, California; Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above)
LOT 154 FRANCIS BACON
Portrait of Michel Leiris 1976 Color etching and aquatint on Arches wove paper #23 of 100 Published by Georges Visat Editions, Paris Signed in graphite lower right margin beneath image; edition lower left; retains publisher’s blind stamp lower right edge of sheet; retains Randolph & Claudia Laub Studio and Workshop label frame verso
Image: 11.625" x 9.875" Sheet (vis.): 14.125" x 12" Frame: 29.375" x 23.75" (Image: 29 x 25 cm) PROVE N A N C E Private Collection, Los Angeles, California; Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (gifted directly from the above); Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above, c. 2000)
LOT 83 GEORGE RICKEY
Two Planes Vertical Diagonal, Vis a Vis 1974 Stainless steel #1 of 5
SIGNATURE, DATE, AND EDITION DETAIL
P ROV E NANC E Maxwell Davidson Gallery, New York, New York; Private Collection, Los Angeles,
Etched signature, date, and edition to base; one element etched “1/5 1”; other element etched “1/5 2”
California (acquired directly from
LAMA would like to thank the George Rickey Foundation for their assistance in cataloguing this work
Lincoln Center and Staempfli
16.25" x 5.875" x 8.75" (dimensions variable) (41 x 15 x 22 cm)
the above, 2015) E XHIBIT E D “George Rickey,” Fordham University Plaza at Gallery, New York, April 22-May 24, 1975; “George Rickey,” Maxwell Davidson Gallery, New York, November 11-December 13, 1980
The Joyful Pluralism of Keith Haring Dubbed “a child of Pop art,” Keith Haring (1958–1990) swiftly ascended to be among the genre’s royalty when his career soared in the 1980s. With iconic line-work and bold colors, Haring was able to seamlessly embrace tropes of commercial culture while creating a wholly unique body of work that frequently pushed against the status quo. As Haring wove together high and low, so too did his subject matter ricochet between tragedy (including the AIDS crisis and South African apartheid) and pure, infectious joy of being. Lot 14, the 1988 Growing Suite, exemplifies the latter — consisting of the complete set of five color screenprints, the series bursts with vibrant color and bodies-in-motion, a style that is pure Haring. “Because the hand is central to Keith’s process,” Jeffrey Deitch says, “his work comes right out of his body.” This notion of Haring’s prints as a mobile extension of the artist’s body emanates from the Growing Suite, both in its ecstatic, interconnected content and the chosen medium of screenprinting. In subject, the works bear similarity to the Pop Shop I and Pop Shop II series of that same era; all three series feature Haring’s iconic human figures in various stages of movement and convergence. As its title suggests, Growing forms are transitory, in-process, and, significantly, interdependent. Circles appear (often interchangeably) as heads and abdomens
within the series, suggesting seeds and sources of origin. In one work, a single figure branches upward and outward into multiple figures like a tree growing towards the sun. That upward thrust appears again in the “people ladder,” where a smaller, child-like figure appears lifted into being by two supporting figures. That Haring so readily adapted his inherently intimate medium — drawing — for purposes of reproduction is integral to his particular genius and legacy. “Whatever [Haring] carried out, he tended towards swift dissemination, duplication and ubiquitous application,” Werner Jehle wrote in his introduction to Keith Haring: Editions on Paper 1982-1990. While such “ubiquity” may for some preclude Haring from an academicized art historical canon, it is arguably his embrace of an inclusive, pluralistic vision of humanity that imbues his work with so much power. Deitch nods to Haring’s deliberate universality, offering “[Haring] is one of the primary links between hip hop from the South Bronx, gay dance club culture, the conceptual art culture of the Lower East Side, and street art culture. He put all these things together. In his lifestyle and his circle, and, obviously, in his art.” As a microcosm of Haring’s career and life, Growing Suite (lot 14) offers an exuberant and swiftly communicated message of human interconnectedness.
Deitch, Jeffrey. “His Art Is His Life.” The Keith Haring Foundation. 2005. Accessed April 15, 2021. https://www.haring.com/!/selected_writing/his-art-is-his-life. Keith Haring: Editions on Paper 1982-1990. Ed. Klaus Littman. Edition Cantz, Stuttgart. 1993.
LOT 14 KEITH HARING Growing Suite
1988 The complete suite of five color screenprints on paper Each: #15 of 15 H.C. aside from the edition of 100 Published by Martin Lawrence Limited Editions, New York; printed by Rupert Jasen Smith, New York Each signed and dated with edition in graphite along right edge of sheet;
each retains Martin Lawrence Limited Edition and printer’s blind stamps lower left edge of sheet Sheets each: 30" x 40" (or alternate orientation) Frames each: 38.5" x 48.875" (or alternate orientation) (Sheets each: 76 x 102 cm) L I T E RAT URE Keith Haring: Editions on Paper 1982-1990. K. Littmann, ed. 1993. 88-91.
LOT 184 BARRY MCGEE Untitled
c. 2000 Acrylic, paper, and white correction tape on paper Composition/sheet: 8.875" x 7.25" (22 x 18 cm) P ROVENA NC E Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired through Laguna Art Museum Benefit Auction, Laguna Beach, California, c. 2006)
LOT 187 ROBERT CRUMB
Untitled (Coconut Woman) c. 1970 Ink on paper applied to bottle Inscribed “...TO GREASE...THING/ (GUARANTEED)/PURE COCONUT STUFF/TOO MUCH” 5.5" x 2.25" x 1" (14 x 6 x 3 cm) PROVE NANC E The Estate of Paula Cracas; Private Collection, Portland, Oregon
Setting the Tone: A Primeval Llyn Foulkes “Sometimes I feel like one of the last individuals, I really do.” —Llyn Foulkes
Engaging chameleonic change as a practice in its own right, artist and musician Llyn Foulkes (b. 1934) is a manifestly Los Angeles artist. “I didn’t belong any place else,” Foulkes reflected in 1997, “I mean I always had such deep feelings about Los Angeles.” Born in Washington, Foulkes moved to Los Angeles in 1957 after a stint in the military, attending the Chouinard Art Institute until 1959; his first solo exhibition was held at Ferus Gallery in 1961. Foulkes painted lot 99, simply titled T, during this early period of recognition, prior to the many pivots that would come to characterize his creative trajectory. The atypical T-shaped canvas is a textured abstraction, its surface appearing smeared away, and, upon closer inspection, alternately cracked, splattered, and incised with hard-to-decipher lettering. As Thomas Micchelli wrote on the occasion of Foulkes’ major retrospective in 2013: “The neo-Dada/neo-Kienholz/neo-Rauschenberg/black/brown/ gray matter of his debut efforts is absolutely nothing like the mordant, hyper-illusionistic tableaux…that the artist started making in 1983.” And so what? While it was the works created in the 1980s and later (including lot 100, Now is the Time), some of which were featured in Paul Schimmel’s seminal "Helter Skelter: L.A. Art in the 1990s," that arguably solidified Foulkes’ reputation, it is a hallmark of the individual to embody contradictions — and to change. Perhaps, in this sense, lot 99 might be considered representative of Foulkes’ primordial phase, a dark and moody void setting the stage for both the pointed cultural critiques and personal mercurialism that would emerge in the decades to follow.
“Llyn Foulkes.” Kent Fine Art. Accessed April 14, 2021. https://www.kentfineart.net/llyn-foulkes Micchelli, Thomas. “Crackup: Llyn Foulkes Gives Us the Art We Deserve.” Hyperallergic. June 22, 2013. Accessed April 14, 2021. https://hyperallergic.com/73852/crackup-llyn-foulkesgives-us-the-art-we-deserve/ Oral history interview with Llyn Foulkes, 1997 June 25-1998 Dec. 2. Smithsonian Archives of American Art. 1997-1998. Accessed April 14, 2021. https://www.aaa.si.edu/collections/interviews/oral-history-interview-llyn-foulkes-12132#transcript
LOT 99 LLYN FOULKES T
1960 Oil on canvas Signed and dated lower bottom right LAMA would like to thank the artist for his assistance in cataloguing this work Canvas (irreg.): 64" x 61" Frame (irreg.): 64.625" x 61.75" (Canvas: 163 x 155 cm) PROVENANC E Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the artist, c. 1960); Thence by descent
LOT 125 PETER ALEXANDER Untitled
1967 Polyester resin Initialed and dated “P.A. 67” 9" x 9.5" x 8.75" (23 x 24 x 22 cm) P ROVENANC E Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the artist); Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above through Los Angeles Modern Auctions, Van Nuys, California, March 5, 2017, lot 78) LITERATURE “The Sculpture of Peter Alexander.” Artforum. P. Plagens. Oct. 1970. 48-51 for a similar example illustrated.
LOT 160 SAM FRANCIS
Papierski Portfolio 1992 The complete set of seven lithographs on Rives BFK paper Artist’s proof aside from the edition of 50 Published by Editions Daniel Papierski, Paris; printed by Gardner Litho, Buena Park Each signed in graphite lower right edge of sheet; edition lower left Together with title, text, colophon, and paper folios in blue clothbound portfolio Image/sheets each: 30" x 22" (or alternate orientation) (76 x 56 cm) This work was published in 1992 to coincide with the publication of the Sam Francis monograph by Yves Michaud.
LOT 114 DENNIS HOPPER Double Standard
1961 Gelatin silver print #9 of 15 Signed with edition verso Image/sheet: 16.125" x 23.75" Frame: 24.75" x 31.875" (Image/sheet: 41 x 60 cm) P ROVENA NC E Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired through Bukowskis, Stockholm, Sweden, November 16, 2011, lot 276)
LOT 115 ED RUSCHA
Cheese Mold Standard with Olive 1969 13-color screenprint on wove paper Published by the artist; printed by Jean Milant and Daniel Socha, Hollywood #66 of 150 Signed and dated with edition in graphite lower left margin beneath image Image: 19.5" x 36.75" Sheet: 25.75" x 40" Frame: 27.875" x 45.125" (Image: 50 x 93 cm) L I T E RAT URE Edward Ruscha: Editions 1959-1999: Catalogue Raisonné. 1st ed. Vol. II. S. Engberg and C. Phillpot. 1999. #31.
LOT 117 ED RUSCHA
Made in California 1971 3-color lithograph on Arches paper #57 of 100 Published by Grunwald Graphic Arts Foundation, University of California, Los Angeles; printed by Cirrus Editions, Los Angeles Initialed and dated with edition in graphite lower left sheet Image/sheet: 20" x 28" Frame: 27.375" x 35.375" (Image/sheet: 51 x 71 cm) P ROVENANC E Newspace Gallery, Los Angeles, California; Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above, c. 2006)
LOT 116 ED RUSCHA Rodeo
1969 2-color lithograph on Arches paper #4 of 20 Published and printed by Tamarind Lithography Workshop, Los Angeles Signed and dated in graphite with workshop’s and printer’s blind stamps lower right edge of sheet; edition lower left edge of sheet Image/sheet: 17" x 24" Frame: 24" x 31.125" (Image/sheet: 43 x 61 cm)
LITERATURE Edward Ruscha: Editions, 1959-1999: Catalogue Raisonné. 1st ed.
L I T E RAT U R E Edward Ruscha: Editions,
Vol. II. S. Engberg and C. Phillpot. 1999.
1959-1999: Catalogue Raisonné. 1st ed.
#52.; Made in LA: The Prints of Cirrus
Vol. II. S. Engberg and C. Phillpot. 1999.
Editions. B. Davis. 1995. 340.
LOT 38 CHARLES ARNOLDI Madhouse
2011 Acrylic on plywood Signed, titled, dated, and inscribed “11-41” in black paint verso; retains Stremmel Gallery label verso 52" x 48" x 3" (132 x 122 x 8 cm) P ROVENA NC E Stremmel Gallery, Reno, Nevada; George and Shirley Isaacs, Honolulu, Hawaii (acquired directly from the above, 2015); Thence by descent EXHIBITE D “Charles Arnoldi,” Stremmel Gallery, Reno, March 13-April 18, 2015
LOT 37 CHARLES ARNOLDI Mental Planes
1988 Acrylic, modeling paste, and sticks in two parts Right panel signed verso; right panel retains artist’s studio label verso; left panel titled and dated verso Overall: 84.25" x 72.75" (214 x 185 cm) PROVE NANC E Sena Galleries West, Santa Fe, New Mexico; Private Collection, Long Beach, California (acquired directly from the above, 1988); Private Collection, Long Beach, California (acquired directly from the above)
LOT 45 JOE GOODE
Tugela (Waterfall #033) 1990 Oil on Gatorboard Stamped signature and date verso; inscribed “#033” in black felt-tip marker verso; retains signed and stamped date to studio label verso Together with framed Untitled print by Joe Goode 20" x 2.875" Mount: 20.875" x 3.75" (51 x 7 cm) P ROVENA NC E The Collection of Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles, California (acquired through Los Angeles Modern Auctions, Van Nuys, California, December 11, 2011, lot 489)
LOT 43 HELEN PASHGIAN Untitled
1982 Epoxy on canvas over panel Signed, titled, dated, and inscribed “Epoxy on canvas/5’ x 5’” in black felttip marker panel verso Canvas: 60" x 60" (152 x 152 cm) PROVE NANC E From the estate of Arlene and Leon Harris, Los Angeles, California; Thence by descent
LOT 32 VASA (VELIZAR MIHICH)
Triangular Column (#2599) 1985 Laminated cast acrylic 124" x 38" x 33" (including base) (315 x 97 x 84 cm) P ROVENANC E The Estate of Linda Sullivan (acquired directly from the artist, 1985); The Estate of Gerard L. Cafesjian (acquired directly from the above through Los Angeles Modern Auctions, Van Nuys, California, December 14, 2008, lot 802)
LINDA SULLIVAN ESTATE, 2008
LOT 127 LINDA STARK Pink Rotation
1992 Oil on canvas over panel Initialed and dated to canvas verso; titled to canvas stretcher bar verso 12.25" x 12.25" (31 x 31 cm) PROVE NANC E Angles Gallery, Los Angeles, California; Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above)
Bruno Munari's 'Useless Machines'
“A useless machine that does not represent anything is the perfect device through which we can easily revive our imagination, afflicted daily by useful machines.” —Bruno Munari Driven by the conviction that “art is continual research,” Italian polymath Bruno Munari (1907-1998) adopted a stance towards art and invention that seemed both cantankerous and endlessly joyful. Dubbed “one of the most autonomous and extraordinary figures of the last century” by curator Alberto Salvadori, Munari worked across disciplines with little regard for convention. His fluid approach led to forays through photography and design, Xerography, collage, sculpture, artist and children’s books, writing, political performance, and pedagogy. Among his myriad influences were Dadaism, Surrealism, Italian Futurism, and the Bauhaus — but he was disciple to none. Exemplifying Munari’s serious playfulness are his Macchine inutili, or “useless machines,” sculptural works put forth to counter daily drudgery and mechanized routine. “The motion of a useless machine,” Munari wrote, “must be the heart of the construction, the vital point.” Munari designed lot 82, produced in an edition of 250 over a span of 14 years by Galleria Sincron, to hang from the ceiling and be gazed upon while interacting with its surroundings. “[Useless machines] find their motors in natural phenomena,” Munari explained, “such as air currents, changes of temperature, humidity, light and shadow, etc., assuming a living aspect.” In imbuing his machine (even a so-called useless one) with a life of its own, Munari used an economy of materials to gently prod at the very nature of beauty, form, and function.
Bruno Munari Artista Totale. Museo Ettore Fico exh. cat. 2017. Bruno Munari. Kaufmann repetto, Andrew Kreps Gallery, and Repetto Gallery exh. cat. New York, Milan, 2018.
LOT 82 BRUNO MUNARI Macchina inutile
1956-1970 Aluminum sheets, nylon threads, and colored adhesive tape #182 of 250 Published by Galleria Sincron, Brescia One element impressed “Sincron” with artist’s name and edition 16.25" x 36" (dimensions variable) (41 x 91 cm) L I T E RAT URE Bruno Munari Artista Totale. Museo Ettore Fico exh. cat. 2017. 122 for a similar example illustrated.
LOT 175 MARK BRADFORD 630C-MB03
2003 10-color lithograph on wove paper #21 of 45 Published by Cirrus Editions, Los Angeles Initialed and dated in graphite lower right edge of sheet; edition with Cirrus Editions blind stamp lower left Image/sheet: 32.5" x 32.75" Frame: 35.25" x 35.25" (Image/sheet: 83 x 83 cm)
LOT 41 SAM GILLIAM Rivulet
1994 Mixed-media and print on paper #2 of 6 Signed lower right edge of sheet; titled and dated with edition lower left Composition/sheet (irreg.): 38.375" x 25" Frame: 44" x 30" (Composition/sheet: 97 x 64 cm) PROVE NANC E Private Collection, San Diego, California
LOT 9 ELLSWORTH KELLY
Concorde III (State) (from the Concorde Series) 1982 1-color aquatint on Arches Cover paper #12 of 18 Published and printed by Gemini G.E.L., Los Angeles Signed in graphite lower right margin; inscribed “State” with edition lower left; retains Gemini
G.E.L. blind stamps lower right edge of sheet Gemini G.E.L. #28.125 Image: 26" x 18.875" Sheet: 41.375" x 29.5" Frame: 43.25" x 31.25" (Image: 66 x 48 cm) L I T E RAT U R E The Prints of Ellsworth Kelly: A Catalogue Raisonné, 1949-1985. R. Axsom. 1987. #198a.
LOT 8 ELLSWORTH KELLY
Concorde I (State) (from the Concorde Series) 1982 1-color aquatint on Arches Cover paper #12 of 18
G.E.L. blind stamps lower right edge of sheet Gemini G.E.L. #28.121 Image: 27" x 19" Sheet: 41.5" x 29.5" Frame: 43.25"x 31.25" (Image: 69 x 48 cm)
Published and printed by Gemini G.E.L., Los Angeles
LIT E RAT URE The Prints of
Signed in graphite lower right margin; inscribed “State” with edition lower left; retains Gemini
Raisonné, 1949-1985. R. Axsom.
Ellsworth Kelly: A Catalogue 1987. #196a.
LOT 132 PHILIP ARCTANDER Clam chair
Nordisk Staal & Möbel Central, designed 1944 29" x 26" x 35" (74 x 66 x 89 cm) P ROVENA NC E Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired through Los Angeles Modern Auctions, Van Nuys, California, June 10, 2018, lot 8)
LOT 74 PABLO PICASSO
The Little Artist (Le Petit Dessinateur) 1954 5-color lithograph on Arches paper #4 of 50 Signed in graphite lower left; inscribed and dated “I/II/III/IV/V/18.5.54” in plate lower left edge of sheet; edition lower right edge of sheet Image/sheet: 25.75" x 19.875" Frame: 38.25" x 32.5" (Image/sheet: 65 x 50 cm) PROVE NANC E Collection of Charles Picasso; Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above) L I T E RAT URE Picasso Lithographs. F. Mourlot. 1970. #263.
LOT 72 AFTER ALEXANDER CALDER Untitled (Star)
1975 Handwoven jute maguey tapestry #30 of 100 BonArt Woven signature and date lower right; edition lower left; woven “C” with BonArt label upper left 56" x 84.5" (142 x 215 cm) P ROVENA NC E Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired through Los Angeles Modern Auctions, Van Nuys, California, February 10, 2008, lot 122)
LOT 69 OSKAR FISCHINGER Macro #61
1966 Oil on canvas Signed lower right edge of canvas; dated with artist’s cipher lower left; signed, titled, and dated to canvas overlap verso; retains Gallery 609 exhibition label canvas verso Canvas: 35.875" x 48" Frame: 37.75" x 49.625" (Canvas: 91 x 122 cm) PROVE NANC E Elfriede Fischinger, Los Angeles, California; Gordon Shwayder Rosenblum, Lakewood, Colorado (acquired directly from the above, c. 1982); Thence by descent E X H I BIT E D “Fischinger: A Retrospective of Paintings and Films by Oskar Fischinger 1900-1967,” Gallery 609, Denver, May-June, 1981
LOT 94 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Slab coffee table
Studio, executed 1965 English walnut and rosewood Inscribed “Arbetman” to underside Together with copy of original sketch from the Nakashima studio dated May 1, 1965 and copies of payment receipts 15" x 66" x 33" (38 x 168 x 84 cm) PROVE NANC E Mr. Abe and Mrs. Shirley Arbetman, Kingston, Pennsylvania (acquired directly from the Nakashima studio, 1965); Thence by descent L I T E RAT URE Nature Form & Spirit: The Life and Legacy of George Nakashima. M. Nakashima. 2003. 106 for a similar example.
LOT 95 GEORGE NAKASHIMA New chairs (6)
Studio, executed 1973 Walnut Each inscribed “Arbetman” to underside Comprised of four side chairs and two armchairs Together with copy of Nakashima studio order card dated February 10, 1973 Armchairs each: 39" x 25" x 21.5" Side chairs each: 35.5" x 18.5" x 20.5" (Armchairs each: 99 x 64 x 55 cm) P ROVENA NC E The Arbetman family, Kingston, Pennsylvania (acquired directly from the Nakashima studio, 1973); Thence by descent LITERATURE George Nakashima: Full Circle. D. Ostergard. 1989. 154.
LOT 96 GEORGE NAKASHIMA Trestle dining table
Studio, executed 1973 Walnut Inscribed “Arbetman” to underside Together with copy of Nakashima studio order card dated February 10, 1973 28" x 72" x 40" (71 x 183 x 102 cm) PROVENANC E The Arbetman family, Kingston, Pennsylvania (acquired directly from the Nakashima studio, 1973); Thence by descent L I T E RAT URE The Soul of a Tree: A Woodworker’s Reflections: George Nakashima. D. Levy. 1981. 188.; Nature Form & Spirit: The Life and Legacy of George Nakashima. M. Nakashima. 2003. 68.
LOT 56 CARLOS ALMARAZ Forest Figures 1987 Oil on board Retains Jan Turner Gallery label frame verso Board: 8" x 10" Frame: 13.25" x 15.25" (Board: 20 x 25 cm) P ROVENANC E Jan Turner Gallery, Los Angeles, California; Private Collection (acquired directly from the above, c. 1989); Thence by descent
LOT 222 LOS CARPINTEROS Untitled
2000 Watercolor on paper Signed and dated lower right Composition/sheet: 29.375" x 41.5" Frame: 36.875" x 48.75" (Composition/sheet: 74 x 105 cm)
LOT 76 PIERRE JEANNERET
Office armchairs from Chandigarh (6) Studio, designed c. 1955-1956 Model no. PJ-SI-28-A One inscribed “J.D.C.C-111” Each: 31" x 20" x 20.5" (79 x 51 x 52 cm) P ROVENA NC E Chandigarh, India; George Gilpin, New York, New York; Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above, 2017) LITERATURE Le Corbusier, Pierre Jeanneret: The Indian Adventure, Design-Art-Architecture. G. Moreau and E. Touchaleaume. 2011. 562-563.
LOT 198 FRANK GEHRY
Little Beaver chair and ottoman (2) New City Editions, Venice, designed 1980; this example executed c. 1987 #32 of 100 Titled with edition in ballpoint pen to underside; retains etched Frank Gehry and Joel Stearns signatures to underside Chair: 32" x 33.75" x 39" Ottoman: 17" x 19.75" x 23" (Chair: 81 x 86 x 99 cm) L I T E RAT URE 1000 Chairs. C. Fiell and P. Fiell. 1997. 586.
LOT 63 JOHN MASON Relief #2
Studio, executed 1963 Partially glazed and painted terracotta Signed and dated to lower left and right edges 39" x 25" x 6" (99 x 64 x 15 cm) P ROVENANC E The Collection of Joni and Monte Gordon, Los Angeles, California EXHIBITED “Civic Virtue: The Impact of the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery and the Watts Towers Arts Center,” Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, December 15, 2011-February 12, 2012 LITERATURE Civic Virtue: The Impact of the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery and the Watts Towers Arts Center. Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery exh. cat. 2011. 137.
LOT 97 GERTRUD & OTTO NATZLER Round bowl with fingermarks
Studio, executed 1966 Mustard yellow crystalline glazed ceramic Signed “Natzler” and retains paper inventory label “N833” Natzler archives identification #N833 LAMA would like to thank Gail Reynolds Natzler for her assistance in cataloguing this work 3.625" x 4.375" diameter (9 x 11 cm) PROVE NANC E Edward H. Fickett, FAIA, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the artists); Thence by descent L I T E RAT URE Form and Fire: Natzler Ceramics 1939-1972. L. Herman. 1973. 108.
LOT 81 THOMAS STEARNS Nebbia Lunare vase
Venini, executed c. 1961 Etched “Venini/Murano/Italia” to underside 4.5" x 4.5" diameter (11 x 11 cm) LITERATURE Italian Glass, Murano, Milan, 1930-1970: The Collection of the Steinberg Foundation. H. Ricke and E. Schmitt. 1997. 170 for similar examples illustrated.; Murano: Vetri dalla Collezione Olnick Spanu. R. Busnelli, ed. 2000. Fig. 175 for a similar example illustrated.
LOT 108 ROBERT RAUSCHENBERG Untitled
1995 Inkjet dye transfer on paper Signed and dated in graphite lower right margin beneath image; inscribed “95.D002” in graphite sheet verso LAMA would like to thank the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation for their assistance in cataloguing this work Together with fact sheet from the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Image/sheet: 15.625" x 24" Frame: 23.25" x 31.75" (Image/sheet: 40 x 61 cm) PROVE NANC E Private Collection (acquired directly from the artist); Private Collection, Northridge, California (acquired directly from the above)
Highlights of the 20th CENTURY MODERN ART & DESIGN AUCTION Go to lamodern.com to view all 232 lots offered in the May 23, 2021 auction
LOT 52 MASAMI TERAOKA Waves
1984 Watercolor on paper Retains Catharine Clark Gallery label frame verso Composition/sheet: 6.25" x 21" Frame: 12.25" x 27" (Composition/sheet: 16 x 53 cm) P ROVENA NC E Ed Lau, Space Gallery, Los Angeles, California; Private Collection (acquired directly from the above); Thence by descent
LOT 84 JOHN REGISTER
Chair in Window Light/ Red Car 1987 Oil on paper Signed lower right in composition; retains Modernism label frame verso Composition/sheet (vis.): 11.5" x 17.625" Frame: 23.25" x 28.75" (Composition/sheet: 29 x 45 cm)
P ROV E NANC E Modernism, San Francisco, California; Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above, c. 1996) E XHIBIT E D “Edward Hopper / John Register: Works on Paper,” Modernism, San Francisco,
This work appears to be a study for the painting titled Chair in Window Light, completed in 1987. In the larger painting, the car is no longer in the composition.
March 2-April 20, 1996 LIT E RAT URE Edward Hopper / John Register: Works on Paper. Modernism exh. cat. 1996. 22.
INDEX by artist A
Alexander Peter.................................pages 26, 27
Oldenburg, Claes..........................................page 8
Almaraz, Carlos..........................................page 54 Arctander, Philip........................................page 46
Arnoldi, Charles.................................pages 34, 35
Parsons, Betty.......................................pages 10, 11
B Bacon, Francis..............................................page 16 Bradford, Mark............................................page 42
Pashgian, Helen..........................................page 37 Picasso, Pablo.............................................page 47
R Rauschenberg, Robert...............................page 61 Register, John.............................................page 63
Calder, Alexander (After).........................page 48
Rickey, George............................................page 83
Crumb, Robert............................................page 23
Ruscha, Ed.............................................pages 31-33
Fischinger, Oskar........................................page 49
Saar, Betye.....................................................page 9
Foulkes, Llyn.......................................pages 24, 25
Stark, Linda.................................................page 39
Francis, Sam.......................................pages 28, 29
Stearns, Thomas........................................page 60
Stella, Frank..........................................pages 12, 13
Gehry, Frank................................................page 57
Teraoka, Masami........................................page 62
Gilliam, Sam................................................page 43 Goode, Joe..................................................page 36
H Haring, Keith.........................................pages 18-21 Hockney, David....................................pages 14, 15 Hopper, Dennis...........................................page 30
J Jeanneret, Pierre.......................................page 56
K Kelly, Ellsworth..................................pages 44, 45
L Los Carpinteros..........................................page 55
M Mason, John...............................................page 58 McGee, Barry...............................................page 22 Munari, Bruno.....................................pages 40, 41
N Nakashima, George...........................pages 50-54 Natzler, Gertrud & Otto............................page 59
V Vasa (Velizar Mihich)................................page 38
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