13. Gerhard Richter
11. Peter Doig
22. Giorgio Morandi
6. Mark Grotjahn
20. Cecily Brown
3. Tomoo Gokita
20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale London, 7 March 2019
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1. Tschabalala Self
Lilith oil, acrylic, fashe, fabric and dry leaf on canvas/linen 213.4 x 162.6 cm (84 x 64 in.) Executed in 2015. Estimate £40,000-60,000 $51,700-77,600 €45,600-68,400 ‡ Provenance Thierry Goldberg Gallery, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner Exhibited Los Angeles, The Cabin, Tropicana, 30 August - 27 September 2015 Literature ‘Self Shape - Tschabalala Self’, The Art Assignment, PBS Digital Studios, 13 October 2016, video, online (illustrated) Tschabalala Self, exh. cat., Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art, London, 2017, p. 52 (illustrated)
Comprising sculptures, monoprints and paintings made of sewn, printed and painted materials, Tschabalala Self’s artistic practice explores the iconographic importance of the black female body in contemporary culture. Holding singular visual energy, and executed the year Self completed her MFA at Yale University, Lilith, 2015, is a striking work from the artist’s young corpus, touching on penetrating, socially-driven themes. Layering statement with craf, Self’s practice has been widely celebrated worldwide, most recently alongside the work of Georgia O’Keefe at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, and in her frst solo museum exhibition in the United States at the Frye Art Museum, Seattle. Viewing all mediums as an extension of her painterly practice, Self presents dynamic characters that span a variety of artistic and craf traditions. In Lilith, the titular fgure – who in Jewish tradition was Adam’s frst wife before Eve – confdently strides across the canvas, pushing aside painted leaves with a collaged hand, as though profoundly unaware and untroubled by the viewer’s gaze. Confronting gendered renderings of history, Self’s voluptuous and exaggerated depiction of the female form belongs to a body of work that echoes her own cultural outlook towards race, gender and sexuality. Her panoply of subjects manipulate, illuminate and destroy imposed collective ideals. ‘The fantasies and attitudes surrounding the black female body are both accepted and rejected within my practice, and through this disorientation, new possibilities arise. I am attempting to provide alternative, and perhaps fctional, explanations for the voyeuristic tendencies towards the gendered and racialized body; a body which is both exalted and abject’ (Tschabalala Self, quoted in ‘About’, https://tschabalalaself.com/). Working from a simple line drawing of how she wants the body to look, Self subsequently delineates her character’s faces, features, bust and ornamentation through stitching. Instilling each painting with distinctive personality, the artist collages materials, paintings, paper and old clothing from her family home into her work. Seeking to fll the void for a narrative that she hasn’t yet found, the artist refers to how her depicted subjects may feel rather than look. Through her pioneering artistic practice, she masterfully and creatively depoliticises – and therefore arguably politicises – the body, harnessing the concept of voyeurism to refect the reality of the black female experience.
2. Rose Wylie
Queen of Sheba with Gold Lump indistinctly titled ‘ITH GOLD UMP’ on the lef part; further indistinctly titled ‘OF SHEBA’ on the right part; each signed ‘Rose Wylie’ on the reverse; lef part further inscribed and numbered ‘2 GOLD LUMP 1830’ on the stretcher; right part further inscribed and numbered ‘1 QUEEN (HOOFS) 1830’ on the stretcher oil on canvas laid on canvas, in 2 parts overall 182.9 x 346.7 cm (72 x 136 1/2 in.) Executed in 2012. Estimate £80,000-120,000 $104,000-157,000 €91,300-137,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Union Gallery, London Acquired from the above by the present owner Exhibited Tønsberg, Haugar Art Museum, Rose Wylie, WOW-WOW 19 January – 10 March 2013, p. 11 (illustrated) Literature Eleanor Ray, ‘Another Route to Particularity: Islanders in Copenhagen’, artcritical, 16 February 2015, online Olivia Parkes, ‘Britain’s ‘Hottest New Artist, Now 82, on Finally Being Taken Seriously’, Broadly, 11 March 2016, online (illustrated) Clarrie Wallis, Rose Wylie, London, 2018, pp. 67, 71 (illustrated, p. 71)
A result of Rose Wylie’s candid observations of the world around her, the artist’s large-scale canvases brim with unbridled energy and jubilant colour. Having been painting for most of her life, Wylie, now 85, has come to prominence in the last decade with multiple international solo shows, including at Tate Britain, London in 2013 and the Serpentine in 2017-18. Two years following her seminal exhibition at Tate, she became a member of the Royal Academy of Arts, London. Queen of Sheba with Gold Lump, 2012, a striking, bold work in two parts, references the legendary Queen of Sheba from the Hebrew Bible, and the 1921 eponymous blockbuster in early cinema, refecting Wylie’s fascination with flm culture. Propelled into modernity, the present composition is marked by light-hearted spirit and subtle ironies. Striving to create a naïve and unsophisticated efect, the artist’s paintings are flled with personality, each awash with a myriad of references from art history and popular culture, including imagery from magazines, flms, newspapers and televised football matches. Citing the infuence of Philip Guston, who shifed from abstraction to energetic fgurative works, Wylie notes how his late pictures ‘ were completely new and terribly exciting, very risky – and stunning. Certain painting has personality. Picasso’s cardboard guitars had personality. And late Guston came up with a very strong personality’ (Rose Wylie, quoted in Alaistair Sooke ‘Rose Wylie: I don’t like arty’, The Telegraph, 6 June 2015, online). Commenting on her strong art historical lineage, Wylie notes ‘The childlike quality [of my work] is difcult for some people ...But then they fnd that actually there’s stuf in it relating to Dürer and Cézanne – indisputable fgures: Dürer, crikey! Cézanne!’ (Rose Wylie, quoted in Alaistair Sooke, ‘Rose Wylie: I don’t like arty’, The Telegraph, 6 June 2015, online). Remarking on how we absorb and process memory, Queen of Sheba with Gold Lump refects Wylie’s creative ability to engage in dialogue with the contemporary public sphere, before committing it to the realm of history. Laying her large unstretched canvases on the foor, the artist works in the round, later gluing painted canvas onto a larger canvas before stretching it. Wylie’s, ‘refned strategy of pitting apparent simplicity and directness against the works’ multiple medial coding’ cements her at the forefront of modern-day artistic creation (Magdalena Kröner, trans. Jane Yager, ‘Rose Wylie’, Frieze, online).
Property of a Private Collector
3. Tomoo Gokita
Sham Marriage signed, titled and dated ‘Sham Marriage Tomoo Gokita 2013’ on the reverse acrylic gouache and charcoal on linen 227.5 x 181.8 cm (89 5/8 x 71 5/8 in.) Executed in 2013. Estimate £220,000-280,000 $289,000-368,000 €253,000-322,000 ‡ Provenance Mary Boone Gallery, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner Exhibited New York, Mary Boone Gallery, TOMOO GOKITA, 11 January - 1 March 2014 Literature ‘TOMOO GOKITA’, purple MAGAZINE, issue 22, Fall/ Winter 2014, online (illustrated) ‘Japanese Painting- Wu Mutian Zhiyang’, sohu.com, 8 September 2017, online (illustrated)
idiosyncratic work builds upon existing imagery, and subsequently undergoes intentional camoufage through a masterful manipulation of paint. Expanding upon the variation of a single gradient, Gokita summons the aesthetic of a bygone era, much like Richter highlighted the temporal gap between reality and its representation in his blurred, almost faded chromatic paintings. The subversive property of Richter’s work sufuses his palette with an enticing quality that is redolent of Gokita’s dexterously shaded tones, which, as noted by prominent art critic Roberta Smith, scintillate in ways that ‘make black-and-white feel like living colour’ (Roberta Smith, ‘Stranger Town: Invading Genres Breach the Art World’s Porous Borders’, The New York Times, 9 March 2005).
Presenting Tomoo Gokita’s instantly-recognisable geometric forms in a striking grayscale palette, Sham Marriage, 2013, exudes the mystery and wit that have come to defne the artist’s highly graphic oeuvre. Rendered with amalgamated zigzags and congruous angles, the painting delineates the anonymous silhouettes of a man and a woman over a subtle gradation of black and grey. Precisely achieved with acrylic gouache and charcoal on linen, the composition bathes in a textural complexity that is refective of Gokita’s rigorous practice, whereby ‘there’s nothing haphazard — not even an accidental drip’ (Tomoo Gokita, quoted in ‘Tomoo Gokita’s painterly coup’, The Japan Times, 11 September 2014, online). Sourcing imagery from sof-core erotic magazines, vintage album covers and mainstream television, Gokita appropriates the distorted bodily archetypes that pervade popular media, and transforms them into abstract, supernatural incarnations. Spanning Cubism, Surrealism, Pop art and mass media, Sham Marriage’s multifarious visual references are emblematic of the artist’s ability to engage in dialogue with distinctive currents of image production. While the woman’s tiny cartoonish eyes set against a neo-expressionist smear of paint are redolent of Roy Lichtenstein’s comic-infused oeuvre, the smoothness of the composition’s gradient-formed backdrop suggests methods of photographic focus utilised in commercial billboards. Employing a visual language akin to that of advertising, Gokita tackles the age-old genre of portraiture in ultra-contemporary terms, imparting it with a sense of glamour that challenges the traditional tenets of painterly representation. The artist’s expert use of light, displaying an array of dramatic contrasts, additionally refects his fondness for photography and flm, and takes on, along with an arresting chiaroscuro quality, the visual countenance of a flm noir. Operating within a larger art historical tradition of hybrid representation, Gokita explores the indistinct border that separates realism from abstraction. Like Gerhard Richter’s photo-realist canvases made in the late 1960s, Gokita’s
Brimming with mesmerising detail and graphic-like smoothness, Sham Marriage heralds a theme that has enthralled artists across time. Touching upon the timeless subject of coupledom, the present work fnds precedent in the myriad of portraits that have examined the bond tying spouses or romantic partners, namely Grant Wood’s American Gothic, Pablo Picasso’s Saltimbanques, and René Magritte’s Les Amants. Shrouding lovers in white cloth, Magritte’s iconic painting Les Amants has been understood as a comment on the complex nature of romantic intimacy, blending notions of exposure and repression. This reading could similarly be applied to Gokita’s Sham Marriage, as the depicted duo’s vague, hazy features summon questions on what lies behind the visible surface. The work’s revelatory title, Sham Marriage, further complicates the apparent simplicity of the spouses’ merged representation. Executed a year before his breakthrough exhibition The Great Circus at the Kawamura Memorial DIC Museum of Art, the present work refects the formal dexterity and seductive quality that propelled Gokita’s oeuvre into the global spotlight. A delectable example of the artist’s unique practice, Sham Marriage successfully coalesces the formal qualities that permeate his beguiling and atmospheric oeuvre.
above René Magritte, Les Amants, oil on canvas, 1928, Australian National Gallery, Canberra. © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
left Roy Lichtenstein, Stepping Out, oil and magna on canvas, 1978, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / DACS 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
MOVING THE MIRROR signed and dated ‘KAWS..10’ on the reverse acrylic on canvas 122.3 x 213.5 cm (48 1/8 x 84 in.) Painted in 2010. Estimate £700,000-1,000,000 $921,000-1,320,000 €805,000-1,150,000 ‡ Provenance Honor Fraser, Los Angeles Private Collection (acquired from the above) Christie’s, New York, 18 May 2017, lot 849 Private Collection, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner
Emblematic of KAWS’s irreverent engagement with contemporary culture, MOVING THE MIRROR, 2010, presents the viewer with an ingenious rif upon the world-famous cartoon character SpongeBob, distinctively redesigned through the artist’s signature X-ed out eyes. Frequently reconstructing renowned television characters with codifed expressions and frenetic grimaces, KAWS populates his oeuvre with the likes of aptly named Kimpsons, Kurfs, and the present KAWSbob, commenting on the infnite malleability of pop culture iconography. Refective of his background in the New Jersey skateboarding community, and operating within the two discrete worlds of creation and commerce, KAWS’s work blurs distinctions between ‘high’ and ‘low’ art, emanating a sense of warmth and approachability that is refected in the artist’s important international following.
During his frst visit to Tokyo in 1997, KAWS was struck by the ways in which cartoon characters could cut through language barriers and cultural diferences. Through resourceful methods of appropriation and subversion, the artist began constructing a hypergraphic visual vocabulary replete with real-life associations, most frequently taking inspiration from comic-strips and cartoons. Unveiling the politics of mass consumption through the creation of a falsely innocent pictorial world, KAWS was rapidly thrust into contemporary discourse and recognised as a key fgure in twenty-frst century art. Employing a bold, explosive palette that reconfgures traditional illustrative processes, the artist has successfully mythologised his unapologetically sardonic characters, efectively creating a universe sui generis, oscillating between contrasting notions of levity and irony.
Keith Haring, Dog, silkscreen ink on plywood, 1986, Bayerische Staatsgemaeldesammlungen Museum Brandhorst, Munich. © The Keith Haring Foundation. Image: Scala, Florence.
‘I always feel like there’s a story with images and with the characters. The best ones inspire new interpretations (…) Icons like Mickey, the Simpsons, the Michelin Man, and SpongeBob exist in a universal way that you forget their origin or even their narrative, and you just recognise them from the slightest glimpse of their image or sound.’ KAWS
Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol, Collaboration No. 19, acrylic, oilstick, printed paper collage and synthetic polymer on canvas, 1984-5. © The Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat / ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2019 / 2019 Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts / DACS 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
Herein, the cropped, close-up perspective of SpongeBob’s features serve to re-contextualise the character’s instantlyrecognisable buck teeth and yellow hue. Functioning as a globally recognised symbol that alludes to drunkenness or death, the crosses over his eyes are reminiscent of a piratical skull and crossbones, compromising the character’s traditionally naïve and unabatedly optimistic gaze. In obstructing SpongeBob’s vision, the artist’s distinctive Xs ultimately disrupt the facilitated exchange of perspective suggested in the work’s title, MOVING THE MIRROR, and magnify the character’s daunting aura. Coalescing a number of visual references that have been impressed upon the artist throughout his career, MOVING THE MIRROR is evocative of contemporary imagery, avant-garde Pop iconography and KAWS’s very own early experimentation with grafti. As an infuential crossover artist, KAWS’s large breadth of work fnds precedent in Pop Art and American abstraction, indubitably informed by the works of seminal art icons Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol. The duo’s incorporation of the lexicon of advertising in their collaborative work Collaboration No. 19, for instance, presaged the strategic overlapping of street art and branding
vocabularies in contemporary art. Working within these two realms, Collaboration No. 19 displays the commonalities of advertising slogans and expressive freehand painting, catalysing the union of both through the bold motif of a skull and crossbones. Despite his use of appropriation, KAWS’s work is consistently imbued with self-expression. In an interview with his friend and collaborator Pharrell Williams, the artist stated that rather than subverting the original meaning of images, he preferred to view his work as ‘honest’ and easily relatable (KAWS, quoted in KAWS WHERE THE END STARTS, exh. cat., Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, 2016, p. 83). He remarked: ‘even though I use a comic language, my fgures are not always refecting the idealistic cartoon view that I grew up on, where everything has a happy ending...I want to understand the world I’m in and, for me, making and seeing art is a way to do that’ (KAWS, quoted in KAWS WHERE THE END STARTS, exh. cat., Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, 2016, p. 5). MOVING THE MIRROR, both visually familiar and symbolically arresting, is an expression of just that: it contains the seriousness of ‘adult’ concerns whilst simultaneously boasting childish associations.
5. Kehinde Wiley
Passing/Posing, Jean de Carondelet signed ‘Kehinde Wiley 04’ on the reverse oil and enamel on canvas, in artist’s frame 270.5 x 209.6 cm (106 1/2 x 82 1/2 in.) Executed in 2004. Estimate £100,000-150,000 $130,000-196,000 €114,000-171,000 ‡ Provenance Simon Watson Arts, New York (acquired directly from the artist) Acquired from the above by the present owner Exhibited New York, Brooklyn Museum, Passing Posing: Kehinde Wiley Paintings, 8 October 2004 - 5 February 2005 Literature Sarah Lewis, ‘De(i)fying the Masters’, Art in America, 1 April 2005, online
A striking and colourful canvas, Passing/Posing, Jean de Carondelet, 2004, belongs to Kehinde Wiley’s ebullient series of large-scale portraits which featured in the artist’s breakthrough exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum in 2004. Dressed in everyday clothing, Wiley’s larger-than-life fgures blur the boundaries between traditional and contemporary modes of representation, forcing a critical consideration of the codifed portrayal of black masculinity. Largely consisting of African American men encountered on the streets of Harlem, the artist’s models ‘assume the poses of colonial masters, the former bosses of the Old World’ (Kehinde Wiley, quoted in kehindewiley.com), echoing Thomas Gainsborough’s esteemed corpus of portraiture. In the present work, the protagonist’s enlivened hands replicate the idiosyncratic gesture presented in Jan Cornelisz Vermeyen’s portrait of Jean de Carondelet – the titular Burgundian politician who advised Roman Emperor Charles V at the turn of the 15th century. Notably, the latter painting is held in the Brooklyn Museum’s collection, the same institution that showcased Passing/Posing, Jean de Carondelet in Wiley’s seminal exhibition of 2004. Having gained international acclaim for his portraits of African Americans over the past 15 years, Wiley made history in 2018 as he became the frst black artist to paint the ofcial presidential portrait for the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, Washington. The unveiling of Wiley’s portrait of Barack Obama in February 2018 was followed by his momentous nomination as one of TIME Magazine’s 100 most infuential people in the world. Hip hop artist LL Cool J, lauded him as a ‘classically, formally trained artist who is transforming the way African Americans are seen—going against the grain of what the world is accustomed to. Kehinde has an MFA from Yale, but instead of using his art to assimilate into mainstream society, he goes minorstream, creating major works that outpace that of the majority of his contemporaries […] And his many paintings in the Smithsonian speak to his creative genius’ (LL Cool J, ‘Kehinde Wiley: The Iconoclast’, TIME, 18 April 2018, online). A contemporary descendent of such Old Master portraitists as Velázquez, Holbein, Titian and Ingres, Wiley engages the visual rhetoric of heroism to explore pressing issues surrounding race, gender and sexuality, highlighting the absence of black voices in the canon of art history.
6. Mark Grotjahn
Untitled PG 32 (Black and Blue Butterfy #689 melted) coloured pencil on paper 170.2 x 119.4 cm (67 x 47 in.) Executed in 2005. Estimate ÂŁ700,000-900,000 $905,000-1,160,000 â‚Ź797,000-1,020,000 Provenance Gagosian Gallery, New York Private Collection, Paris
A striking, asymmetrical composition, Untitled PG 32 (Black and Blue Butterfy #689 melted), 2005, belongs to Mark Grotjahn’s iconic Butterfy series. Composed of mesmerising radials emanating from a pair of ofset vanishing points, the work creates an intense visual illusion that dismantles our notions of space and depth. This destabilising efect is typical of Grotjahn’s Butterfy drawings, examples of which are held in the notable collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Comprising the artist’s trademark geometric motif, Grotjahn’s Butterfy drawings emerged from an earlier series of threetiered perspective canvases, which explored the hypnotic efects induced by the collision of multiple vanishing points on a single horizontal plane. In his Butterfy works, Grotjahn shifs the axes laterally, complicating the potential boundaries of perspective: ‘The butterfy came because I tried to make some horizontal three-tier perspectives; the majority of my work is vertically orientated, so I tried to work outside of that and make a painting with a horizontal orientation. I made the frst two tiers vertical and I pointed the perspectives towards each other…It certainly became more a painting and less a representation’ (Mark Grotjahn, in conversation with Marta Gynp, ‘Mark Grotjahn’, Zoo Magazine, #38, January 2013, online).
Bridget Riley, Ascending and Descending Hero, acrylic and emulsion on canvas, 1965, The Art Institute of Chicago. © Bridget Riley 2019. All rights reserved. Image: Scala, Florence.
Grotjahn’s sophisticated use of multiple vanishing points in Untitled PG 32 (Black and Blue Butterfy #689 melted) appropriates the technical innovations of Renaissance artists, who developed their theories and mathematical experimentations with one and two-point perspectives. Exploiting these traditional principles of pictorial depth to create a disorientating illusion of moving space, Grotjahn fuses his forebears’ strictly classical, analytical methodology with a distinctly modern approach. Teetering on the edge of abstraction, the present work’s tactile surface and mirrored tempests of colour refect Georgia O’Keefe’s rippling folds and lucid forms. The potent abstraction in the present work echoes the metaphysical shapes of O’Keefe’s Blue and Green Music, 1919-21, both works forging an absolute formal and spatial tension through their cropping and continuation beyond the visible picture plane. The dominant vertical vanishing point of the present work forms the skeleton of the titular butterfly from which the wings – designated by black and blue striations – radiate. This intricate formation recalls Piet Mondrian’s geometric abstraction and the bold psychedelic configurations from Op Art protagonists such as Bridget Riley and Sol LeWitt.
Georgia O’Keeffe, Blue and Green Music, oil on canvas, 1919-21, The Art Institute of Chicago. © Georgia O’Keeffe. Bridgeman Images.
‘The sense that everything’s possible, for me, that’s kind of a given. I don’t feel restricted, or I don’t want to feel restricted, by any rules.’ Mark Grotjahn
Mondrian’s revolutionary ordered compositions had a noticeable impact on Grotjahn, as evidenced by the regimented perfectionism projected in the present work’s exact precision. As Michael Ned Holte notes, ‘the butterfy has become to Mark Grotjahn what the target is to Kenneth Noland, the zip was to Barnett Newman, and the color white is to Robert Ryman’ (Michael Ned Holte, ‘Mark Grotjahn’, Artforum, November 2005, p. 259). Similarly, the graphic – almost hallucinogenic - designs by the likes of Riley and LeWitt are also echoed in the artist’s hypnotic visual efects created by the stark, monochromatic contrast and captivating use of line: ‘they are always, always tight: they are about control … in Greek the butterfy is Psyche, the symbol of the soul, and here the soul is a formula. A pattern, an arrangement of rays, sometimes a bargain between conficting perspectives’ (Glenn O’Brien, ‘The New Mask, Ke-Mo-Sah-Bee’, Mark Grotjahn: Masks, exh. cat., Gagosian Gallery, New York, 2015, p. 8). A central band of heavily pencilled black media becomes the support for two sets of radiating bands of black and blue, ofset by the unbalanced centres of perspective and thus creating a dizzying visual vortex: ‘this body of work employs a strategy of nearly compulsive repetition and reiteration of a set of formal rules and stylistic elements – variations on a theme in which painted lines emanate from a central axis – that allowed the artist to experiment within a circumscribed set of conceptual limits … Grotjahn’s butterfies playfully blur the once rigorous boundaries between representation and abstraction, between surface and depth, and between the conceptual and the concrete in artistic production’ (Douglas Fogle, ‘The Monolith and the Butterfy’, Mark Grotjahn: The Butterfy Paintings, exh. cat., Blum and Poe, New York, 2014, p. 37). Meticulously drawn by hand, and laboriously impressed upon the paper in pencil, the bevelled lines of this dramatic composition are rendered with immaculate precision; in fact, the making of the Butterfy series required such physicality from the artist that following a shoulder injury as a result of a skiing accident in recent years, Grotjahn was no longer able to continue making them. Thus, Untitled PG 32 (Black and Blue Butterfy #689 melted), for all its complexity and skill, serves as a lasting homage to Grotjahn’s supreme artistic vision and technical execution.
Property from a Distinguished European Collection O♦
7. David Hammons
Untitled (Body Print) signed and dated ‘Hammons 74’ lower right grease and dry pigment on paper 64.5 x 49.9 cm (25 3/8 x 19 5/8 in.) Executed in 1974. Estimate £300,000-400,000 $388,000-517,000 €343,000-457,000 ‡ Provenance Private Collection, New York Richard Gray Gallery, Chicago Greenberg Van Doren Gallery, St. Louis Private Collection, New York L&M Arts, Los Angeles Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2012
Rarefying his presence in the art world and only sporadically honouring the public with new artistic productions, David Hammons has, over the course of six decades, built a minutely crafed oeuvre that is at once unapologetically political and exquisitely poetic. Commenced in the late 1960s, the artist’s visually arresting series of ‘body prints’ represent the genesis of his international success. Balancing performance and selfrepresentation, these works were created by coating bodies – usually the artist’s own – with a thin layer of grease or margarine, before pressing oily body parts against a sheet of paper, and dusting the resulting imprint with black pigment. Untitled (Body Print), 1974, defly embodies the beguiling visual efect and profound socio-political irreverence carried by the series. As such, it is situated at the core of the artist’s conceptual endeavours, which rendered his oeuvre ‘the most stimulating and infuential of the last four decades’ (Holland Cotter, ‘Reading Fragments from an Incendiary Time’, The New York Times, 14 November 2006). Other examples from the distinguished series are housed in the notable collections of The Museum of Modern Art, New York and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
Straddling X-ray precision and pictorial elusiveness, Hammons’ body prints are at once feeting and deeply corporeal, emulating photographic clarity whilst conjuring an otherworldly image. Capturing a blurry yet extremely detailed record of the artist’s presence, the present work manipulates the qualities of one-to-one transfer, honing in on distinct facial features within a patterned torso, whilst fading the upper and lower parts of the model’s body. Evincing the contours of a fantastical creature, Untitled (Body Print) transcends its refective quality and enters a surrealist realm; with large goggly eyes and bold facial features, the central fgure sits somewhere between bizarre fguration and imaginative abstraction. Executed in a climate of burgeoning black nationalism in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s, Hammons’ methodical prints use the
body as a vital expressive tool to balk against the pervasive phenomena of alienation and ostracisation. Building on the social and political dimension of the artist’s body prints, Gylbert Coker remarked: ‘Much more subtle in their identifable element, the prints nonetheless grew from a black object—grease. How many times has your Momma told you to get yourself some grease ’cause your legs are ashy?’ (Gylbert Coker, ‘Human Pegs/Pole Dreams,’ Village Voice, 28 September 1982, p. 79). Highlighting the appropriative fetishisations imposed onto black bodies over the course of history, Untitled (Body Print) departs from its innocuous fgurative associations and summons politically loaded symbols and imagery. Taking on the appearance of a traditional African mask, the subject of the work reveals deep historical undercurrents, namely the quasi-talismanic quality that masks took as a symbol for blackness in the late 19th and early 20th century. Claiming unique creative agency through self-representation, Hammons raises poignant questions in response to these pervasive and fallacious stereotypes: Does an autonomous creative gesture constitute a safe and empowered method of expression? Or does the fatness of a ‘black’ picture, regardless of the identity of its maker, bring attention to the racial gaze? Enticing and open-ended Untitled (Body Print) merges the existence of an aesthetically beautiful composition with underlying anonymity. The novelty of the technique paired with the mystery of the work form seamlessly unite to create an unexpected and relentlessly intriguing whole. Relating the elusiveness of Hammons’ work to the spontaneity of music, Anthony Huberman remarked: ‘Raw, spiritual and always politically charged, Hammons’ work plays with art the way a jazz musician plays with sound — he gets inside it, bends it, twists it around and keeps it from sitting too still or getting too comfortable’ (Anthony Huberman, ‘David Hammons?’, FlashArt, no. 308, May 2016, online).
‘They call my art what it is. A lot of times I don’t know what it is because I’m so close to it. I’m just in the process of trying to complete it. I think someone said all work is political the moment that last brushstroke is put on it. Then it’s political, but before that it’s alive and its being made.’ David Hammons
David Hammons, Slauson Studio, gelatin silver print, 1974. Photograph: Bruce W. Talamon. © Bruce W. Talamon.
Property from The Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat
8. Jean-Michel Basquiat
Untitled (Velveeta) acrylic, oilstick, resin, paper and canvas collage on canvas 167.6 x 152.4 cm (65 7/8 x 60 in.) Executed circa 1984. Estimate £1,200,000-1,500,000 $1,550,000-1,940,000 €1,370,000-1,710,000 ‡ Provenance Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner
‘Basquiat’s essays in anatomy, in their jazz-rif manner of exposition, are style and content in service to healing on a heroic scale.’ Farris Thompson, The Hearing Eye: Jazz & Blues Infuences in African American Visual Art, Oxford, 2008, p. 254
Jean-Michel Basquiat, ISBN, acrylic and coloured xerox collage on canvas, 1985. © The Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat / ADAGP Paris and DACS, London 2019.
A study in colour and abstraction, Untitled (Velveeta), 1984 epitomises Jean-Michel Basquiat’s distinctly feverish visual repertoire. Bringing together disparate iconographic felds, Untitled (Velveeta) merges fgurative expression, abstract forms, street vernacular and mathematic signs. Executed in acrylic, oilstick, resin and paper and canvas collage on canvas, the present work exemplifes Basquiat’s prodigious ability to conjure pictorial complexity on a single plane. From the estate of the artist, Untitled (Velveeta) is a rare masterwork by the artist who, until his tragic and untimely death in 1988, revolutionised the medium of painting and the history of contemporary art itself. Overlaying blocks of vivid colour alongside the portrait of an anonymous heroic fgure, Basquiat marks an invisible line at the canvas’s vertical centre, balancing two apparently improbable pictorial arrangements. The right-hand of the composition is dedicated to an ominous verdant man with idiosyncratically upraised arms, crested by the collaged canvas study of an echoing, totemic face in dual perspectives.
To the lef of the plane, superimposed blocks of colour glow with relentless verve: a sof, worn-out pink covers a larger mass of pine green which itself drifs over a massive bulk of dramatically vibrant blue, animating the whole composition. Heralded the ‘radiant child’ of New York City’s art scene by René Ricard in 1981, Basquiat only accrued critical acclaim and impressive accomplishments thereafer. ‘All hell broke loose. The young master was ready’ Richard Marshall observed (Jean-Michel Basquiat, exh. cat., Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, 1991, p. 37). In 1982, Basquiat moved his studio from the basement of Annina Nosei’s gallery to a large Soho lof; liberated and energised, he began creating some of his most vital paintings. Working in his studio against the steady backdrop of music and cartoon programmes, he covered canvases with swif but certain gestures whilst adroitly exploiting the creative potential of free association. In 1983, he became the youngest artist ever to exhibit at the Whitney Biennial; in 1984, he had become one of the most signifcant black artist’s in the canon of Western art history.
Executed at the apex of his tragically short career, the present composition emerges from a moment of unprecedented prestige, brimming with the characteristic elements that defned Basquiat’s most mature work. Coalescing various colours and textures, Untitled (Velveeta) pulsates with the energy of an artist at the height of his creative powers. Like the musicians he so admired, Basquiat drew on a range of sources to vivify his visual lexicon, including urban and pop culture, anatomical studies, music, poetry, art history, Christian iconography, and African and Haitian culture. Digesting these infuences in a stream-of-consciousness approach, Basquiat subsequently translated his fused ideas directly into his work. Pasting his biological study onto the upper right corner of the canvas, the artist’s concern with anatomy comes to the fore. Afer a car accident at the age of eight, the artist sufered various internal injuries and received a copy of Gray’s Anatomy from his mother whilst recovering in hospital. The lasting impression of the tome on the artist was prevalent throughout his artistic career, with the incorporation of anatomical imagery, dismembered limbs, peculiar X-ray vision and medical labelling rife within the most accomplished of works. As Glenn O’Brien recalls, ‘He ate up every image, every word, every bit of data that appeared in front of him, and he processed it all into a bebop Cubist Pop Art cartoon gospel that synthesised the whole overload we lived under into something that made astonishing new sense’ (Glenn O’Brien, ‘Greatest Hits’, in Jean-Michel Basquiat: Now’s the Time, exh. cat., Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, 2015, p. 177). Basquiat was an avid collector of newspaper comic strips and frequently worked with the television streaming cartoons in the background. One of the sources that fltered into his art were the advertisement breaks that took place between each televised programme. The painting’s title, Untitled (Velveeta), along with some of the forms adorning the work’s animated surface, could be perceived as allusions to such references; writ between the two eyes of his dismembered totemic fgure at the top right corner of the canvas, the word ‘Velveeta’ brings up an image of the American processed cheese of the same name. Replicated as a supporting hue in the background, the cheese’s golden colour travels across the surface of the canvas, implicitly marking its presence as a pervasive leitmotif.
Illustration for Gray’s Anatomy, 19th century. Bridgeman Images.
Conjuring a part-abstract, part-fgurative whole, Untitled (Velveeta)’s two halves are each evocative of distinct art historical associations, drawing from traditions of portraiture and pictorial abstraction alike. While Basquiat’s unnamed protagonist boasts a style distinctively its own, the artist’s arrangement of multi-coloured tides alongside the man’s elongated fgure contains an expressive sensibility that is akin to Clyford Still’s viscerally chromatic canvases. Letting the vast expanses of pigment act as foils to the anonymous character, Basquiat’s amorphous, energetic swathes are indeed redolent of the animistic quality found in Still’s large-scale abstractions. The vital quality summoned by Untitled (Velveeta)’s striking colour palette is only reinforced by the amalgamation of materials and textures that compose its surface. Applying a creased section of canvas onto the composition, Basquiat formally alludes to the scruffy gestural character and directionless swirls of ochre acrylic in the background, together, pointing to an aesthetic of fragmentation. Echoing the artist’s passion for jazz, the rhythmic interaction of colour, form, and tangible materials indeed produces a visual cadence akin to instinctive and visceral melodies. As expressed by Richard Marshall, ‘The segmentation and display of body parts in Basquiat’s work is also one manifestation of his presence for fragmentation as a more general mode of picture-making, storytelling, and as a way of treating materials’ (Richard Marshall, Jean-Michel Basquiat, exh. cat., Museum Würth, Künzelsau, 2001, p. 28). The present composition, with its bold, vibrant colour palette, is in itself an outstanding work from Basquiat’s repertoire; the artist achieves an illusion of space and depth, distinctively diferentiating foreground and background. Covering the work’s ochre backdrop with impastoed lines of luminescent white, and generous swathes of turquoise, green, and pink paint, Basquiat ultimately used colour to push the subject to the foreground of the composition. Whilst areas of the canvas reveal a muted palette, the paintwork surrounding the head of Basquiat’s anonymous protagonist, as well as the tighter detail in the facial area, provide the viewer with a poignant point of culmination. Emblematic of his incomparable touch and quasi-incantatory intuition, Untitled (Velveeta) contains all the iconic skills and idiosyncrasies that named Basquiat a revolutionary artistic fgure of his generation.
Clyfford Still, Untitled, gouache on paper, 1940. Private Collection. © City & County of Denver, Courtesy Clyfford Still Museum / DACS 2019.
‘I like to have information, rather than just have a brushstroke. Just to have these words to put in these feelings underneath, you know.’ Jean Michel Basquiat
9. Jean-Michel Basquiat
Untitled oilstick on paper 56.5 x 76.5 cm (22 1/4 x 30 1/8 in.) Executed in 1983. Estimate £500,000-700,000 $654,000-915,000 €571,000-800,000 ‡ Provenance Elise Boisanté Fine Arts, New York PS Gallery, Tokyo (acquired from the above in August 1985) Elise Boisanté Fine Arts, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner This work has been requested for inclusion in Tokyo, Mori Arts Center Gallery, Jean-Michel Basquiat – Made in Japan, 20 September - 17 November 2019 This work has been requested for inclusion in Melbourne, National Gallery of Victoria, Keith Haring/ Jean-Michel Basquiat: Crossing Lines, 1 December - 13 April 2020
Exemplary of the graphic lyricism that Jean-Michel Basquiat boldly inserted into the canon of art history, Untitled, 1983, stems from the most signifcant period of the artist’s tragically short career. Animating the sheet’s pure surface in raw oilstick with his characteristically visceral scrawl and symbols taken from Henry Dreyfuss’ Visual Sourcebook, Basquiat harnesses an electrifying palette and the immediacy of monochromatic delineation to compose an enigmatic tableau that fuctuates between abstraction and fguration. Having been requested for inclusion for two forthcoming exhibitions at the Mori Arts Center Gallery, Tokyo, and the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Untitled is fuelled by artist’s unending fascination with the human form and the semantic duplicity of visual symbols. Swifly identifed as igniting a new sensibility in contemporary drawing and painting, Basquiat was ceremoniously introduced to the art world as the ‘radiant child’ who would carry forth the historic legacy of painterly automatism in 1981. ‘If Cy Twombly and Jean Dubufet had a baby and gave it up for adoption it would be Jean-Michel. The elegance of Twombly is there... and so is the brut of the young Dubufet’ (Rene Ricard, ‘The Radiant Child’, Artforum, December 1981, p. 35). A year later, the artist was bestowed with breakout solo exhibitions at Annina Nosei Gallery in New York, Larry Gagosian in Los Angeles, Galerie Bruno Bischoferger in Zurich and Delta Gallery in Rotterdam, as well as a remarkable inclusion in Documenta in Kassel. In 1983, Basquiat became the youngest artist to ever to be included in the Whitney Biennial at the mere age of 23. That same year, he produced some of his most vibrant works, including the present work. Resplendent with the key visual characteristics that defne Basquiat’s enduring vision, Untitled is a paradigmatic work demonstrating the artist’s skill in drawing, the quintessential foundation of his artistic practice. The symbolic weight of pop culture and the graphic potency of grafti underpinned the visual
lexicon that Basquiat later introduced into the arena of fne art. In Untitled, the unbridled immediacy of drawing conjures an image that performs in a mode of free association. Delineating the silhouettes of three human fgures alongside interlocked grids, Untitled appears to put together a scene from downtown New York, its noise evidenced by repeated loops and lines echoing cartoon iconography, and its heat embodied by the vibrant colours penetrating the contours of each drawn fgure and building. Brought to life through the artist’s hand, this city vista is a testament to Basquiat’s ability to convey an image replete with real-life associations through the essential craf of drawing. The present work brims with geometric forms and symbols, three skeletal fgures composed with a jutting sense of askew geometry and an improvised rhythm akin to the jazz music he revered, Basquiat’s robotic protagonists activate multiple semiotic registers. Recalling the artist’s fascination with signs and symbols, the present work is punctuated with references from Egyptian hieroglyphics and Henry Dreyfuss’ hobo code in the Symbol Sourcebook, 1972. The fgures appear like monstrous cartoon robots, neither villains or heroes, alongside Dreyfuss’ register of symbols, the spirals signifying that a ‘judge lives here’ and the cross-hatching representing ‘jail’. Basquiat’s oilstick astutely condenses a multiplicity of symbolic, fctional and lived experiences as he revels in the ambiguity of prescribed visual signs. In the present work, new faces appear amongst other alien symbols and gridded lines drawn from Dreyfuss’ ‘hobo code’. Rendered in thickly applied brown and black oilstick, accentuated with clear red lines, Untitled, 1983, echoes the vocabulary of his seminal Six Crimee, housed at the Museum of Modern Art, New York. As such, Basquiat implicates his viewers in a seductive game of semiotics where we are challenged to pin down the meaning of his signs, but where the tallies on his scoreboard are likely to change at any moment.
Jean-Michel Basquiat, Six Crimee, acrylic and oilstick on Masonite, 1982, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. © 2019 The Estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat, ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2019.
Property from an Imporatant Private Collection O
10. Roy Lichtenstein
Girl in Mirror signed, numbered and dated ‘rf Lichtenstein 3/8 1964’ on the reverse porcelain enamel on steel 106.6 x 106.6 cm (41 7/8 x 41 7/8 in.) Executed in 1964, this work is number 3 from an edition of 8 plus 2 artist’s proofs and is included in The Roy Lichtenstein Foundation’s online works listing. Estimate £4,500,000-6,500,000 $5,810,000-8,400,000 €5,130,000-7,410,000 ‡ Provenance Leo Castelli Gallery, New York Charles H. Carpenter, New Canaan (acquired from the above on 15 December 1964) O.K. Harris Works of Art, New York Max Palevsky Collection, California (acquired from the above in 1973) Thence by decent Christie’s, New York, 10 November 2010, lot 45 Acquired at the above sale by the present owner Exhibited New York, Leo Castelli Gallery, Works by Bontecou, Chamberlain, Daphnis, Higgins, Johns, Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg, Scarpitta, Stella, Twombly, Tworkov, June 1964 (another example exhibited) Kansas City, Nelson Gallery and Atkins Museum of Fine Arts, Kansas City Collects: A Selection of Works of Art Privately Owned in the Greater Kansas City Area, January - February 1965 (another example exhibited) London, The Tate Gallery, Roy Lichtenstein, 6 January - 4 February 1968, no. 48, p. 51 (another example exhibited) Washington D.C., The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Twentieth Century American Artists, 23 October - 21 November 1971, no. 50, n.p. (another example exhibited, numbered from an edition of 5) Brussels, Palais des Beaux-Arts, American Art in Belgium, 25 May - 28 August 1977, no. 83, p. 80 (another example exhibited and illustrated) Fort Collins, Colorado State University, Roy Lichtenstein at Colorado State University, 1 - 30 April 1982, no. 7, pp. 2, 13 (another example exhibited and illustrated, p. 13) Aspen Institute, Roy Lichtenstein, July - September 1997 (another example exhibited)
Seattle Art Museum, Seattle Collects Lichtenstein, 20 January - 14 May 2000, no. 20 (another example exhibited and illustrated) Rome, Chiostro del Bramante (another example exhibited and illustrated, p. 103, no. 45); Milan, Padiglione di Arte Contemporanea; Trieste, Museo Revoltella; Wolfsburg, Kunstmuseum (another example exhibited and illustrated, cover), Roy Lichtenstein, Rifessi-Refections, December 1999 - January 2001 New York, Gagosian Gallery, Lichtenstein: Girls, 12 May - 28 June 2008, p. 63 (another example exhibited and illustrated) Literature Ellen Johnson, “The Image Duplicators-Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg and Warhol,” Canadian Art, vol. 23, no. 1, January 1966, p. 12 (another example illustrated) Alberto Boatto and Giordano Falzoni, eds., Lichtenstein, Rome, 1966 (another example illustrated, cover) Diane Waldman, Roy Lichtenstein, New York, 1971, no. 114, n.p. (another example illustrated, numbered from an edition of 6) Roy Lichtenstein, 1970-1980, exh. cat., The Saint Louis Art Museum; Seattle Art Museum; New York, Whitney Museum of American Art; Fort Worth Art Museum, 1981, p. 16 (another example illustrated) Leo Castelli Gentle Snapshots, exh. cat., Galerie Bruno Bischoferger, Zurich, Summer 1982, n.p. (illustrated) Contemporary Great Masters: Roy Lichtenstein, Tokyo, 1992, pl. 5, n.p, p. 93 (another example illustrated, n.p.) Aaron Betsky, Three California Houses: The Homes of Max Palevsky, New York, 2002, p. 80 (illustrated, inside back cover) Michael Lobel, Image Duplicator Roy Lichtenstein and the Emergence of Pop Art, New Haven / London, 2002, fg. 84, pp. 132, 135, 139, 164 (another example illustrated, p. 135, numbered edition of 6) Linda Hales, ‘A Visual Conversation’, Home & Design Magazine, November - December 2007, online ‘Roy Lichtenstein at Gagosian’, The New York Times, 10 June 2008, online (another example illustrated) Roy Lichtenstein Refected, exh. cat., Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York, 2010, pp. 52-53 (another example illustrated) Diane Solway, ‘Art, Drugs, And Rock ‘N’ Roll’, W Magazine, 1 November 2010, online (illustrated) Judicaël Lavrador, “Sous l’exubérance des toiles, une précision maniaque”, Beaux Arts, 2013, pp. 18-19 (another example illustrated)
In Girl in Mirror, 1964, an important and early work by Roy Lichtenstein, the artist presents the iconic portrait of a graceful blonde woman framed within the constraints of a handheld mirror. Seized from the skewed, aspirational female heroines that populate the worlds of cinema and comics, the girl’s generic appearance is at once aesthetically seductive and conceptually radical, raising questions on the fabricated ideals of consumer culture. Propelled to fame through his frst one-man exhibition at Leo Castelli Gallery, New York in 1962, from where the present work was initially acquired in 1964, Lichtenstein brought commercial imagery into the gallery space. Previously housed in the notable collections of Max Palevsky and Charles H. Carpenter, and with an extensive and notable exhibition history in the most prominent institutions worldwide, Girl in Mirror is a signifcant work that captures the crux of Lichtenstein’s painterly oeuvre, idiosyncratically composed of Ben-Day dots and revolving around themes of American afuence, commercialism and consumption.
Between 1961 and 1965 Lichtenstein created a cycle of paintings centred on stills from advertisements, and love and war comic strips. The present work, from 1964, is an important early example of the imagery that has become synonymous with the artist’s name. Working amidst advanced printing methods, and drawing from the pungent nostalgia and rampant commercialism of the 1964 World Fair taking place in New York, Girl in Mirror engages in the continuous debate on the relationship between high art and mass culture, whilst simultaneously touching on the politics of gendered representation. Executed in the same year as the fair, for which Roy Lichtenstein had created a twenty-four-foot mural of a laughing female figure, the present work is in dialogue with an easily identifiable female trope that the artist deployed throughout his career, and of which the iconographic predictability emulates the immediacy with which we assume the formal diktats of popular culture.
‘I think that he was portraying his idea of the dream girl.’ Dorothy Lichtenstein in conversation with Jef Koons in Lichtenstein: Girls, exh. cat., Gagosian Gallery, New York, 2008, p. 15
Roy Lichtenstein, Girl in Mirror (Study), graphite and coloured pencils on paper, 1964. © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / DACS 2019.
Forming part of the artist’s celebrated group of Girl works from the 1960s, the present work is frmly rooted in the seminal foundations of Pop art. Concerned with the phenomena of self-objectifcation and voyeurism within mass media, Girl in Mirror serves as a potent commentary on the pixelated ideals of the role of young women within contemporary society, and the all-too-framing force of the male gaze. As noted by curator Diane Waldman, the female protagonists ‘are to Lichtenstein what Liz and Marilyn were to Warhol, our society’s clichés, though without any true identity of their own. They are products of a culture that puts celluloid glamour and consumer objects before human dignity or collective achievement’ (Diane Waldman, Roy Lichtenstein, exh. cat., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1993, p. 117). Taking the comic strip and commercial imagery as his point of departure, and painting radical re-evaluations of images that populate our collective unconscious, Lichtenstein’s Girl paintings represent a provocative afront to artistic creation. Raising questions of legitimacy and transformation, the artist’s compositions were rendered all-the-more urgent and transgressive by the impending threat of kitsch onto fne art in the 1960s. Commenting on his fascination with comic book imagery, in his frst published interview in 1963, the artist noted that he had turned to comics because of their ‘possibilities for painting’ and that the comic book artist ‘intends to depict and I intend to unify…I use [comic book scenes] for purely formal reasons’ (Roy Lichtenstein, quoted in Alan Solomon, ‘Conversation with Lichtenstein,’ Fantazaria, July-August, 1966). Developed from unknown source imagery, the present work, resembles a later clipping from a 1967 issue of Secret Hearts magazine, underlining the notion that Lichtenstein’s work harnessed the cultural saturation of popular imagery. Two closely related preparatory sketches for the present work unveil the process of the artist’s meticulous composition, having experimented with a reversal before settling on the present orientation.
Roy Lichtenstein, World Fair Mural, oil on plywood, 1964, Weisman Art Museum (University of Minnesota), Minneapolis. © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / DACS 2019.
‘The kind of girls I painted were really made up of black lines and red dots. I see it that abstractly, that it’s very hard to fall for one of these creatures, to me... But I think I have in mind what they should look like for other people.’ Roy Lichtenstein
Leo Castelli and Walter Hopps with Girl in Mirror, 1964 at Castelliâ€™s 77th Street Gallery, 1965. Photograph: Hans Namuth. ÂŠ Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / DACS 2019.
Titian (Tiziano Vecellio), Venus with a Mirror, oil on canvas, c. 1555, National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C. Bridgeman Images.
‘In isolating the female fgure from her original context, Lichtenstein further magnifes society’s codifcation of women as ornaments, positioned for the male gaze only.’ Dexterously manipulating popular images since the 1960s, Lichtenstein became increasingly interested in the optically and intellectually intriguing subject of mirrors. Revelling in the appearance of her own refection, the girl in the present work tilts her head in a manner that perfectly reveals her carefully traced eyes, fawless red lips and pristinely styled locks. Her strategic positioning facilitates a possessively inclined gaze: the character’s tangible locks of hair are of immediate access whilst her facial features are equally visible. Through the mirror, ofen perceived as a metaphor for the complexity and multiplicity of perspective, Lichtenstein enters a discourse of sharp contemporary relevance. ‘Inspired by their cursory renderings, he began to take photographs of cosmetic mirrors used to magnify there face in which he noticed patterns that were already abstract of discovered shapes, shadows, and refections that he liked. He was interested not in a clear image refected in a mirror but in images that did not refect exactly’ (Diane Waldman, quoted in Roy Lichtenstein Rifessi-Refections, exh. cat., Chiostro del Bramante, Rome, 1999, p. 33).
Diane Waldman, Roy Lichtenstein, exh. cat., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (and travelling), 1993-94, p. 117
Referencing an object loaded with signifcant literary and art historical precedent, Lichtenstein invokes centuries of artistic and cultural tradition. The mirror alludes to the theatrical compositions envisaged by the Old Masters, the highly curated Mannerist and Baroque canvases, whilst simultaneously recalling strategic methods of illusion employed by the likes of Pablo Picasso, René Magritte, André Breton and Michelangelo Pistoletto. Conveying surrealist metaphors, a discursive vernacular, and magical realism alike, the mirror carries with it the politics surrounding subjects of representation. With Ben-Day dots, Lichtenstein not only shifed tenets of representation in painting, but also achieved potent dualism, bringing pictures simultaneously closer and further from reality. Using the refective device as a visual axis through which to portray the protagonist, the artist allows straight slices of image to fracture an otherwise continuous composition. Referencing philosophy and art history, the subject of the mirror held technical challenges for Lichtenstein. Musing on the motif, he noted ‘There’s no simple way to draw a mirror, so cartoonists invented dashed or diagonal lines to signify mirror. Now, you see those lines and you know it means mirror, even though there are obviously no such lines in reality. If you put horizontal, instead of diagonal, lines across the same object, it wouldn’t say ‘mirror’ (Roy Lichtenstein,
Diego Velázquez, The Rokeby Venus, oil on canvas, 1648-51, National Gallery, London. Bridgeman Images.
quoted in Michael Kimmelman, PORTRAITS, Talking with Artists at the Met, The Modern, The Louvre and Elsewhere, www.lichtensteinfoundation.org, online). Through the recurring theme of projection and refection, Lichtenstein developed a graphic idiom that traces light activity and distinguishes between the fore- and back-ground. One of the earliest works which the artist executed in porcelain enamel on steel, Girl in Mirror challenges the relationship between subject and object. Belonging to only three other square editioned works boasting both the same subject and medium, the present work is rare graphic spectacle. Recognising the significance of medium in achieving his clean, unified aesthetic and presenting the primacy of the image itself, Lichtenstein’s groundbreaking adoption of enamel porcelain ‘reinforced the look of mechanical perfection that paint could only simulate but not duplicate and it provided the perfect opportunity to make an ephemeral form concrete’ (Diane Waldman, Roy Lichtenstein, New York, 1971, p. 23). Eschewing the evidence of the artist’s hand, aside from subtle variations in the surface with the rigid black outlines of the figure and mirror, the highly glossy, almost reflective, surface of the present work replicates the smooth surface of the mirror within the work itself.
Inspired by, and appropriating, the spatial arrangement, fattened plane and bold palette of Piet Mondrian’s neoplastic style, Lichtenstein realised a modernist brand of pop. Combining the striking, bold tones of Mondrian’s compositions with the popular imagery of advertising and comics, the present work, alongside other early works, harnesses Mondrian’s unity of space and fattened efect. The painting’s metallic support, however, manifests a three-dimensional aspect that instils the composition with additional complexity. The foregrounded image is executed on the same plane as the refection, yet with insistent outlines and unmodulated colours, the work straddles dimensionality. Playing on this compositional illusion, the swirling tresses of the female fgure pre-empt the artist’s iconic depictions of gestural brushstrokes that he would commence in 1965. Lichtenstein’s graphic comment on the eminent content and laden gesture of the Abstract Expressionists objectifes the brushstroke as an emblem, touching on fundamental beliefs of artistic creation.
within the thinly veiled stereotype of gender roles of 1950s and 60s American society. Through framing devices and refective surfaces, Lichtenstein forges a sense of removal from the central characters. The female lead in the present work is further depersonalised, remaining nameless as the anonymous ‘Girl’: ‘In isolating the female fgure from her original context, Lichtenstein further magnifes society’s codifcation of women as ornaments, positioned for the male gaze only’ (Diane Waldman, Roy Lichtenstein, exh. cat., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (and travelling), 1993-1994, p. 117).
With identical dimensions and colour scheme, Girl in Mirror shares semiotic importance with Vicki! I--I Thought I Heard Your Voice!, of the same year. In Vicki! I--I Thought I Heard Your Voice!, the hand, head, neck and shoulder of a male fgure frame the face of the female protagonist, in ways that are redolent of the fgural positioning within the present work. Both melodramatic and emotional, these two works ft
Celebrating the remarkable possibilities of popular imagery, Girl in Mirror epitomises Lichtenstein’s iconic and enduring style. At the heart of the artist’s legacy, the present work balances simplicity and sophistication. On the ingenuity of the artist Robert Hughes mused, ‘He has become the great academician of the Pop movement…You can’t imagine people asking themselves with bated breath, ‘What will Lichtenstein do next?’ You know the answer, although the exact image he will do it to is as yet unknown. It will be done very well, probably on a huge canvas, with perfect decorum and an unfaltering sense of design, every black line in its right place, not a slippage in the stripes and Benday dots’ (Robert Hughes, quoted in Michael Lobel, Image Duplicator Roy Lichtenstein and the Emergence of Pop Art, New Haven / London, 2002, p. 23).
Piet Mondrian, Opposition of Lines, Red and Yellow, oil on canvas, 1937, Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Roy Lichtenstein, Yellow Brushstroke I, oil on canvas, 1965, Kunsthaus Zürich.
Image: Scala, Florence.
© Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / DACS 2019.
Property from a Private American Collection
11. Peter Doig
Slushy Landscape (with fgures) signed, titled and dated ‘PETER DOIG June July 1995 ‘SLUSHY LANDSCAPE’ (WITH FIGURES)’ on the reverse oil on canvas 30.5 x 40.4 cm (12 x 15 7/8 in.) Painted in 1995. Estimate £600,000-800,000 $785,000-1,050,000 €686,000-914,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Schönewald Fine Arts, Dusseldorf Zwirner & Wirth, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner in March 2002
Painted in the immediate afermath of Peter Doig’s Turner Prize nomination in 1994, Slushy Landscape (with fgures), 1995, presents anonymous silhouettes, mysterious architecture and luminescent birch trees in a gleaming snowscape. Echoing Doig’s Red House of the same year, the present work gathers the symbols and themes that defned the artist’s visual repertoire in the mid-1990s, and propelled him to the forefront of contemporary painting. Coalescing visions of real sceneries and imagined lands, the composition draws from Doig’s unique working method that spans photographic imagery, personal memories and vivid imagination. Mediating fguration and abstraction, it compounds a number of stylistic references, namely the haziness of Impressionist strokes and the ghostly veil shrouding photorealistic paintings, most vividly exemplifed by the canvas’s pearlescent quality and numinous luminosity. Situated at a turning point in Peter Doig’s artistic development, Slushy Landscape (with fgures) is a mature rendering of the artist’s visual syntax, spanning a number of his pictorial idiosyncrasies in a restrained palette of glowing whites and earthy browns. Celebrating the multifarious qualities of oil paint, the composition captures the medium’s ability to achieve seamless nuance, herein producing the astonishing illusion of snow melting into the very weave of the canvas. As varying shades of white scintillate in areas where the snow is meant to appear sparse, icy or melting – on the bark of the birch trees or the tiles of the house’s roof – defly dispersed strokes emulate the efects of light drifing on a
sunlit ice feld. As the artist observed: ‘We’ve all experienced the sensation of light dropping and producing strange natural efects, and I think in a way I am using these natural phenomena and amplifying them through the materiality of paint and the activity of painting’ (Peter Doig, quoted in Adrian Searle, Peter Doig, London, 2007, p. 132). Inspired by the lush landscapes of rural Quebec where the artist spent his childhood, Doig’s paintings of the 1990s are defined by three crucial subjects: snowscapes, woodland scenes and modernist buildings plunged in impenetrable vegetation. The thread tying Doig’s magistral works from this period, including Pink Snow, 1991, Museum of Modern Art, New York, and Ski Jacket, 1994, Tate Modern, London, the subject of snow emanates an air of nostalgia that has since continued to underpin his artistic production. Weaving a delicate balance between form and emotion, Slushy Landscape (with figures) merges flickering hues of frozen matter with the foggy, faltering sensation of remembrance. Inspired by Pieter Bruegel’s winterly visions, Doig remarked ‘when you look at [Bruegel’s painting] the snow is almost all the same size, it’s not perspectival, it’s the notion of the ‘idea’ of snow, which I like. It becomes like a screen, making you look through it’ (Peter Doig, quoted in Richard Shiff, ‘Drift’, Peter Doig, New York, 2011, p. 329). Dispensing with notions of flatness and depth, Slushy Landscape (with figures) portrays an idea rather than a place: it becomes an all-consuming, immersive landscape that transcends mere representation.
Peter Doig, Ski Jacket, oil on canvas, 1994, Tate Collection, London.
Peter Doig, Pink Snow, oil on canvas, 1991, Museum of Modern Art, New York.
© Peter Doig. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2019.
© Peter Doig. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2019.
‘Snow falls into the centre of Doig’s memory project. More than a phenomenon to be remembered like any other memory, it becomes a candidate for the generic idea of memory.’ Richard Shif, Peter Doig, New York, 2011, p. 331 Pieter Bruegel, Hunters in the Snow, oil on wood, 1565, Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna. Bridgeman Images.
Building on notions of reverie and nostalgia, the present composition transforms into a mesmeric dreamscape. Through methods of mirroring and doubling, Doig invites the viewer to examine the distinctions between reality and representation, and to enter the liminal space held at the junction of both. The barren tree fragmenting centre of the composition’s plane participates in achieving this paradoxical, dual tableau; reminiscent of Barnett Newman’s infamous zip, it produces two peripheral spaces within a single composition. ‘The mirroring opened up another world. It went from being something like a recognisable reality to something more magical’, Doig explained (Peter Doig, quoted in Judith Nesbit, ‘A Suitable Distance’, Peter Doig, exh. cat., Tate Britain, London, 2001, p. 14). Just as abstraction and fguration are at play in the present work, a tension between nature and man-made structures seems to arise, where snow furries and organic agents encroach on the main house at the composition’s centre. ‘I always wanted a landscape to be humanised by a person or a building, at least something that suggests habitation’ (Peter Doig, quoted in Adrian Searle, Peter Doig, London, 2007, p.
16). At once threatening and inviting, the house portrayed in the present composition is kept doorless and windowless, closed of from the viewer. As Doig isolates the cabin and renders it literally impenetrable, the structure is made all-themore ghostly, summoning an invisible breath that permeates both its walls and surroundings. A group of anonymous silhouettes gathered at the forefront of the composition emphasises this tension. Diametrically opposed, they present an image that is akin to that projected by a warped or fallacious mirror. An exquisite example of Peter Doig’s expert handling of the painterly medium, Slushy Landscape (with fgures) evinces the qualities that heralded Doig as one of the greatest painters of his generation. Existing in an in-between space where reality, memory and imagination are one, the present work invites us into Doig’s distinctively ethereal world, and demonstrates his ability to ‘suggest retrospection and nostalgia and make-believe’ through the captivating theme of snow, as deployed in the most acclaimed of his works (Peter Doig, quoted in Paul Bonaventura, ‘A Hunter in the Snow’, Artefactum, No. 9, 1994, p. 12).
Property from an Important Private Collection O♦
12. René Magritte
La recherche de l’absolu signed ‘Magritte’ lower lef; further titled ‘La Recherche de L’Absolu’ on the reverse gouache on paper 36 x 27 cm (14 1/8 x 10 5/8 in.) Painted circa 1963. Estimate £900,000-1,200,000 $1,160,000-1,550,000 €1,030,000-1,370,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Renée Lachowsky, Brussels Private Collection, Belgium (acquired from the above in the 1960s) Christie’s, New York, 1 May 1996, lot 372 Samuel Vanhoegaerden Gallery, Knokke Private Collection, Europe (acquired from the above circa 2008) Christie’s, London, 4 February 2015, lot 118 Acquired at the above sale by the present owner Exhibited Brussels, Musée Magritte, on loan, May 2009 - February 2015 Literature David Sylvester, René Magritte, Catalogue Raisonné, Gouaches, Temperas, Watercolours and Papiers Collés, 1918-1967, vol. IV, London, 1994, no. 1540, p. 260 (illustrated)
La recherche de l’absolu, circa 1963, is flled with the surreal poetry and unique aesthetic that made René Magritte’s oeuvre one of the most intriguing and engaging of its time. Set against a red sky and distant woods, a house emerges. Standing in its immediate foreground is the main subject of the picture: a huge tree, its barren branches shaped like veins in a leaf. Plunged in a sea of pink and purple washes, the present scene exudes an ethereal aura that enhances the dreamlike quality of the painting’s subject. Magritte frst explored the ‘tree-leaf’ motif in an oil painting in 1940. Describing its improbable appearance in a letter to Claude Spaak a year later, he dubbed the visual contraction ‘a leafess tree (in winter) but with branches that provide the shape of a leaf, a Leaf even so!’ (René Magritte, quoted in David Sylvester, René Magritte Catalogue Raisonné, vol. II, London, 1993, p. 282). The evolution of a subject frst introduced in La géante, circa 1936, the ‘leaf-tree’ symbol is one that kept reappearing in Magritte’s oeuvre subsequently. Rigorously studying the elements that one takes for granted in the world, the artist envisioned various aspects of his surroundings as riddles or conundrums to be solved, and explored their characteristics in a string of works that would become amongst his most famous. It was as a result of this investigation that Magritte would paint an egg in a cage in Les afnités électives, 1933. Similarly, he explored the notion of fre in La découverte du feu, 1939, featuring
an egg, a key and some paper, all burning; in L’invention collective, 1934, he tackled the sea as a subject, presenting a mysterious mermaid on a beach. Inspiration, intuition and wit all combined to usher these works into existence—a blend that is equally evident in the present composition, where the autumnal quality of the leaf-tree is emphasised by the vivid hues of dusk enveloping it. Though the ‘leaf-tree’ presented an entirely new, idiosyncratic vision at the time of its emergence, the symbol had a noteworthy conceptual precedent, having appeared in a different guise in Max Ernst’s Histoire naturelle, 1936. In Ernst’s work, the Surrealist artist had used a ‘frottage’ technique, placing paper over various objects which he then rubbed with a pencil, allowing the pattern of their surfaces to come through before being wholly reinterpreted. In executing this process, leaves almost organically suggested themselves as trees to Ernst. For Magritte, the transformation appears to have been reversed, with his tree becoming a leaf, focusing on the paradoxical and poetic apparition of the ‘leaf-tree’ as a key with which to unlock the natures of existence and perception themselves. Looking at La recherche de l’absolu, the homage to Ernst seems more explicit than it was in La géante: the removal of the greenery, focusing on the dark silhouettes of the vein-branches, echoes the monochrome of Ernst’s publication.
René Magritte, L’empire des Lumières, oil on canvas, 1949. © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
René Magritte in his house in Brussels, 1967. © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2019. Daniel Frasnay / akg-images.
René Magritte, La recherche de l’absolu, oil on canvas, 1941. Ministere de la Communaute Francaise de Belgique, Belgium.
René Magritte, Gèante, gouache on paper, circa 1936. © ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2019. Bridgeman Images.
© ADAGP, Paris and DACS, London 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
Magritte’s gouaches—like many of his paintings—were ofen reprisals of themes that he had explored earlier in his career. However, he himself was not interested in creating replicas of his works, instead producing unique variations in order to eke out diferent poetic efects. This is particularly true of La recherche de l’absolu. When Magritte had frst tackled the subject, he had done so in three diferent paintings, each representing a diferent time of day, with a rising sun, a setting sun and a night sky; one of these now being owned by the Ministère de la Communauté Française de Belgique, Brussels. Those three ‘originals’ showed the autumnal leaftree against a fat, near-barren landscape articulated by only a clutch of hills, of distant trees or a sphere. By contrast, in the 1963 gouache, Magritte has added a number of elements, rendering this composition unique. There is woodland, and also a monumental bell. The landscape itself is far better articulated than in the earlier paintings, flled with details of the scrub and grass. Against the blazing red sky are shown a house, its windows seemingly alight with the same colours deployed above. Is the light emanating from them, or refected in them? Certainly, the presence of this house recalls another of Magritte’s iconic works, L’empire des lumières, 1949. However, where that work had a divide between the daylight of the upper section and the night-cloaked lower half, here Magritte has taken a diferent approach, extending the red of the sky in the windows. These additional elements set
La recherche de l’absolu apart from the other works, either on canvas or on paper, which tend to share the barren backdrops of the earlier examples. Magritte appears to have taken the title of La Recherche de l’absolu from an 1834 novel by Honoré de Balzac. Appropriately, this focused on the adventures of Balthazar Claës, a member of a respectable Flemish family in northern France who becomes obsessed by the near-alchemical quest for an element that underpinned existence. One of the themes explored by Balzac is the rights of the individual over that of society—a theme encapsulated in this picture, where the multitude—the tree—takes on the appearance of the single leaf. At the same time, there may be a link between Claës’ search for the absolute, and Magritte’s own explorations of the fabric of existence. At one point in the novel, Claës speaks in terms that resonate with Magritte and with the process that informed his compositions such as La recherche de l’absolu: ‘The power of vision which makes the poet, the power of deduction which makes the man of science, are based on invisible afnities, intangible, imponderable.’ However, Claës believes science to be the great unifer of existence, a conceit too narrow for Magritte. For Claës, the mysteries and emotions of the world can be linked to ‘physical efects. The prophet sees and deduces’ (Honoré de Balzac, The Alkahest, trans. Katherine Prescott Wormeley, www.gutenburg.org, online).
13. Gerhard Richter
Dϋsenjäger signed, titled, inscribed and dated ‘DÜSENJÄGER (WV-Nr. 13a) Richter 1963’ on a label afxed to the overlap oil on canvas 128.9 x 197.8 cm (50 3/4 x 77 7/8 in.) Painted in 1963. Estimate £10,000,000-15,000,000 $12,950,000-19,430,000 €11,430,000-17,140,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Collection of the Artist Collection of Günther Uecker, Dusseldorf Private Collection, Dusseldorf Galerie Schmela, Dusseldorf Galerie Hans Strelow, Dusseldorf/Galerie Rudolf Zwirner, Cologne Barbara Gladstone Gallery, New York Collection of Susan and Lewis Manilow, Chicago (acquired from the above) Christie’s, New York, 13 November 2007, lot 16 Private Collection, Seattle Phillips, New York, 16 November 2016, lot 7 Acquired at the above sale by the present owner Exhibited San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Public Information: Desire, Disaster, Document, 18 January - 30 April 1995, no. 13, p. 88, 91 (illustrated, p. 91) The Art Institute of Chicago, Gerhard Richter: Forty Years of Painting, 22 June - 8 September 2002
Literature Wolkenkratzer Art Journal, December 1984 - February 1985, p. 84 (illustrated) Gerhard Richter: Bilder Paintings 1962-1985, exh. cat., Städtische Kunsthalle Düsseldorf; Nationalgalerie Berlin, Stifung Preußischer Kulturbesitz; Kunsthalle Bern; Vienna, Museum moderner Kunst/Museum des 20. Jahrhunderts, 1986, no. 13a, pp. 6, 357 (illustrated, p. 6) L’art aujourd’hui en République Fédérale d’Allemagne, Bonn, 1988, p. 27 (illustrated) Benjamin H.D. Buchloh, Peter Gidal and Birgit Pelzer eds., Gerhard Richter: Volume III: Werkübersicht/Catalogue Raisonné 1962-1993, Ostfldern, 1993, no. 13a, p. 148 (illustrated) Gerhard Richter in Dallas Collections, exh. cat., Dallas Museum of Art, 2000, p. 2 Jürgen Harten, Ein Maler aus Deutschland. Gerhard Richter. Das Drama einer Familie, Munich, 2005, p. 18 Dietmar Elger, Gerhard Richter: A Life in Painting, Chicago, 2009, pp. 125, 165 Identity Foundation, ed., Deutsche Identität Denken, Dusseldorf, 2009, n.p. (illustrated) Robert Storr, September: A History Painting by Gerhard Richter, London, 2010, pp. 63-64, 93 (illustrated, p. 63) Dietmar Elger, Gerhard Richter: Catalogue Raisonné vol. 1, 1962-1968, Ostfldern, 2011, no. 13a, p. 71 (illustrated) Gerhard Richter: Streifen & Glas, exh. cat., Albertinum, Galerie Neue Meister, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden; Kunstmuseum Winterthur, 2013, p. 58 Christian Lotz, The Art of Gerhard Richter: Hermeneutics, Images, Meaning, London, 2015, p. 139 Francesca Pietropaolo, ed., Robert Storr: Interviews on Art, London, 2017, pp. 715-716 Gerhard Richter, exh. cat., The National Gallery Prague, 2017, p. 16
Gerhard Richter, Bomber (13), oil on canvas,1963, Städtische Galerie Wolfsburg. © Gerhard Richter 2019 (0027).
Gerhard Richter, Stukas (18-1), oil on canvas, 1964, Pinakothek der Moderne, on loan from the Wittelsbacher Ausgleichsfonds. © Gerhard Richter 2019 (0027).
‘Pictures like that don’t do anything to combat war. They only show one tiny aspect of the subject of war – maybe only my own childish feelings of fear and fascination with war and with weapons of that kind.’ Gerhard Richter
Düsenjäger (Jet Fighter), 1963, is one of Gerhard Richter’s historically iconic early works. Stretching two metres in width, the work is one of the artist’s frst Photo Paintings—cited as number 13-a in Richter’s self-edited list of recognised works—and dates from the dawn of German Pop art. Echoing concurrent artistic thrusts in the United States, Düsenjäger recalls Roy Lichtenstein’s Blam from 1962. Where Lichtenstein opted for melodrama with the same subject matter, Richter treated his subject in a deliberately understated manner. By 1963, when Düsenjäger was painted, the artist had honed a new and persuasive visual language which would become the cornerstone for his artistic development. During the course of that year, the success of Richter’s photorealistic works would see him involved in his frst major exhibitions in Dusseldorf, as well as his frst contract with an art dealer. It is a further tribute to the importance of Düsenjäger that it was formerly owned by the artist Günther Uecker.
Düsenjäger is one of the frst of a group of eight celebrated paintings that Richter made of warplanes during this period— only one other dates from 1963, with the rest made the following year. Of these, four are in German museum collections. Most of them also feature what subsequently became Richter’s main palette—the grisaille; with its combination of grey and pink, Düsenjäger is a rare exception, joined by only two works from 1964, Mustang-Stafel and XL 513. The latter work, now in the Museum Frieder Burda, Baden-Baden, shows a Cold War era British bomber, and shares the dusk-like blush of pink that features in Düsenjäger. With their combed brushwork, both pictures channel the power of the jets they represent, capturing a sense of the blur as they speed past.
Gerhard Richter, Mustang Staffel (19), oil on canvas, 1964, Private Collection, on loan to the Gerhard Richter Archiv, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden.
Gerhard Richter, XL 513 (20-1), oil on canvas, 1964, Collection Frieder Burda, Baden-Baden. © Gerhard Richter 2019 (0027).
© Gerhard Richter 2019 (0027).
Gerhard Richter, Flieger (18-2), oil on canvas, 1964, Hessisches Landesmuseum Darmstadt. © Gerhard Richter 2019 (0027).
The use of colour in Düsenjäger was rare not only among Richter’s depictions of warplanes but across all the works he created during this important early period. The previous year, his Eisläuferin and Party had featured smears and spatter of red, adding a sense of near-violence to the works and echoing Art Informel. In Party, now in the Musuem Frieder Burda, a pair of legs is shown in fesh tones, prefguring the link to realism and naturalism showcased in Düsenjäger. Similarly, in Schloß Neuschwanstein, also owned by the Musuem Frieder Burda, the greenery surrounding the eponymous castle is shown in colour, revealing the link to the photographic source that had tethered the fesh colour in Party. This was explored to vivid efect in Mund of 1963, now in the Art Institute of Chicago, which shows a vivid red mouth against the swirling fesh tones of an implied face. In that work, Richter used a palette that invoked photographic realism yet did so in a composition so reduced that it borders upon abstraction, revealing his interest in the mechanics of representation.
Richter’s investigation of colour dynamics came to the fore in his later Colour Chart series, in which individual blocks of monochrome are shown next to each other, clinically isolated and juxtaposed. In Düsenjäger, the dynamism of colour gives a sense of motion that is accentuated by the cropping of the plane’s nose, as though it has sped past too fast for the original photographer to capture. Richter uses this to trick the viewer into inferring a sense of movement, when the paint itself is all too still. This process works in parallel to the disconnect between the high drama of Lichtenstein’s Blam and the slow process of its creation. It is in the tension between the explosive dynamism of Richter’s and Lichtenstein’s images and the slowness of their creation that some of their visceral conceptual power lies.
The term Pop may have been used as early as the 1950s in Great Britain, but it was at the beginning of the 1960s that the concept took hold on each side of the Atlantic. While in the United States, artists such as Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol turned their sights on current media and consumerism as inspiration and subject matter, so too did Richter, alongside his friends Sigmar Polke and Konrad Lueg (later Fischer). The emergence of Pop Art in the States gave a further impetus to these artists; it was in a copy of Art International that Richter had seen an image of one of Lichtenstein’s advert-based paintings in 1962. Soon thereafer, he saw Lichtenstein’s works in the fesh during a trip to Paris in early 1963, when he and Lueg visited the gallery of Ileana Sonnabend. Richter has explained that these works did not provide his inspiration— he had already begun to incorporate found images into his paintings, frst with a photograph of Brigitte Bardot. However, Lichtenstein’s work, along with his recognition and success, provided validation. Bolstered by this revelation, Richter and some of his contemporaries launched themselves into a distinctive programme of exhibitions and painting, including a show in Dusseldorf with Kuttner, Lueg and Polke, which gave Richter the occasion to publicly connect their paintings to Pop Art.
Richter’s iteration of Pop Art saw the artist using found images in several ways. The slow process of painting, the painstaking attention to detail involved in creating his work by hand, the presence of the visible brushstrokes, all come into a new focus when married to an image from the media. Where Lichtenstein was fascinated by the nature of seeing, dismantling the entire process of looking at an image and the short-hand by which information was optically transferred, Richter was discovering a means to continue painting. Taking photographs and committing them to canvas through oils, the long process of applying brushstroke afer brushstroke, allowed him to circumvent the long-proclaimed death of painting and revive it in the modern world. Düsenjäger perfectly demonstrates this paradox. It is an easily-read image. It is flled with atmosphere, with motion and drama. But unlike Lichtenstein’s stencilled works and Warhol’s silkscreens, there is an emphasis on the materiality of the paint, which itself insists upon our recognition of the artist’s hand in its creation. This is in particular the case in the combed brushwork, which adds the motion of a tactile dimension to the surface and recalls the motion of Richter’s seminal Zwei Fiat, housed in the Museum Frieda Burda, Baden-Baden.
‘Pop Art? Naturalism? Imperialist Realism? New Vulgarism? Anti-Art? Nouveau Realism? Pop-Around? Junk Culture?’ from the invitation to Gerhard Richter’s frst exhibition in Dusseldorf, with Manfred Kuttner, Konrad Lueg and Sigmar Polke, Ladengalerie, May 1963.
Roy Lichtenstein, Blam, oil on canvas, 1962. © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / DACS 2019.
Andy Warhol, Double Lavender Disaster, acrylic, silkscreen ink, and pencil on linen, 1963. © 2019 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc./ Licensed by DACS, London.
This, afer all, is an appropriated image. It is ultimately a still life, a painting of a photograph—a fact that is underlined by the pale bands at the top and bottom of the canvas. ‘The idea that art copies nature is a fatal misconception,’ Richter explained. ‘Art has always operated against nature and for reason. Every word, every line, every thought is prompted by the age we live in, with all its circumstances, its ties, its eforts, its past and present. It is impossible to act or think independently and arbitrarily. This is comforting, in a way’ (Gerhard Richter, ‘Notes’, 1962, Dietmar Elger and Hans Ulrich Obrist eds., Gerhard Richter Text: Writings, Interviews and Letters 1961-2007, London, 2009, p. 14).
‘Pop Art has rendered conventional painting – with all its sterility, its isolation, its artifciality, its taboos and its rules – entirely obsolete.’ Gerhard Richter
Occasionally attempting to play down the importance of content in his paintings, Richter claimed that it was the act of reproducing a photograph by hand that was key; yet it is clear that many of his works contained pointed and even provocative references to the world around him. Taking the pictures of warplanes alone as an example, several of them show images of bombers from the Allied forces, either current or historic. In the latter case, these are essentially the bombers that had destroyed Richter’s former home of Dresden during his own childhood. It would appear to be no coincidence that only two of the images show overtly German planes— in Schärzler, a jet sporting the Lufwafe insignia, and the dive-bombing Stukas in the Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich. Violence is invoked in all the pictures of warplanes, whether presenting a bomber dropping its payload or, in Düsenjäger, displaying the gleaming force of a jet streaking past. In this sense, this is Pop Art less in the vein of Lichtenstein’s cartoonish images of aerial heroics than of Warhol’s contemporaneous images of Car Crashes and Electric Chairs.
Gerhard Richter, Zwei Fiat (67), oil on canvas, 1964. Collection Frieder Burda, Baden-Baden. © Gerhard Richter 2019 (0027).
In Düsenjäger, the use of colour can also be seen as a parallel to Warhol’s ability to disrupt his subject matter. For example, in some of his images of the recently-deceased Marilyn or his gun-toting Elvis, the highly-keyed colours undercut the sense of violence. Similarly, the Electric Chairs and Car Crashes were shown in a rainbow of colours. Richter’s use of pink in Düsenjäger appears vaguely naturalistic, especially against the backdrop of the metallic-grey plane; yet at the same time, there is the sense that he has bottled an image of violence, of the kind of hi-tech weaponry that had fascinated him when he had been a boy, that is linked to machismo, manliness and aggression undermined in his use of pink. This is akin to Warhol’s images of Elvis pointing his pistol, which in his hands took on an association of high camp rather than menace. Richter’s ambivalent use of the machinery of war as subject matter would have been all the more pertinent in 1963, when he painted Düsenjäger. Afer all, this was a crucial moment of tension in the Cold War. Richter, who had only recently defected from communist East Germany to the capitalist West, and who had grown up under the National Socialist regime of Adolf Hitler, was all too aware of the danger of idealisms.
‘Richter mistrusts our direct sensory experience of the environment but sees in photography a tool that, precisely because of its limitations, can be used to achieve a more objective perception.’ Dietmar Elger, Gerhard Richter: A Life in Painting, Cologne, 2002, p. 93
While no date within the course of 1963 is ascribed to Düsenjäger, it is worth noting that Richter himself accorded it a catalogue raisonné number that placed it soon afer one of the pictures thematically linked to the assassination of the American president, John F. Kennedy. This had taken place on 22 November that year—less than half a year afer he had famously addressed a massive crowd in Berlin, declaring ‘Ich bin ein Berliner.’ His presence in Berlin had itself underscored the gravity of the situation in the Cold War. Only a month before his death, American forces had also carried out Operation Big Lif, a highly-publicised exercise demonstrating that they could shif over 15,000 troops across the Atlantic from the United States to West Germany, as well as hundreds of tons of material. This was intended to showcase the agility of the NATO strike force. Düsenjäger, thus, was painted against the backdrop of some of the highest tensions since the end of the Second World War. In this sense, its subject matter was highly pertinent. The jet in Düsenjäger is a Fiat G-91, nick-named the ‘Gina’. This versatile jet had been specifcally designed for use by NATO at the end of the 1950s and was adopted by the Lufwafe amongst other air forces. A brilliant success then, it later became the subject of a novel franchise deal. Becoming the frst warplane to be made in West Germany since the end of the Second World War, the ‘Gina’ showed an image of post-war reconciliation, of West Germany’s rehabilitation. Intriguingly, in the case of Düsenjäger, the plane shown appears to sport the extended cockpit of the G-91 T—the double cabin designed for training pilots, inculcating a new generation into the ways of war.
Gerhard Richter, Präsident Johnson versucht Mrs. Kennedy zu trösten, oil on canvas, 1963. © Gerhard Richter 2019 (0027).
Fiat G 91 T
‘Richter compels us to consider the act of looking - he balances longing for something behind what is represented with an insistence that we can never know what is there.’ Moira Weigel, ‘Gerhard Richter Grand Illusion’, The Guardian, 25 April 2009, online
Düsenjäger taps into the visual language with which the technology of warfare continues to be fetishised. Richter, despite the supposedly inscrutable deadpan of an appropriated photograph, approaches his subject matter from a point of view that both embraces and critiques this fascination. Düsenjäger was painted from the unresolved, and therefore all the more engaging, perspective of an artist who has lived under Nazism, Socialism and Capitalism, painted against the backdrop of an age that veered relentlessly from optimism to pessimism and back again. Historic, political and artistic tensions course through Düsenjäger, and these result in its becoming both very much of its time, and transcending the context of its own creation: a masterpiece of Pop.
Property of an Important Collector O♦
14. Martin Kippenberger
Ohne Titel (Meine Lügen sind ehrliche) oil on canvas 198.7 x 239.2 cm (78 1/4 x 94 1/8 in.) Painted in 1992. Estimate £3,500,000-4,500,000 $4,600,000-5,920,000 €4,030,000-5,180,000 ♠ ‡ Provenance Galerie Bärbel Grässlin, Frankfurt Private Collection, Nagoya Sotheby’s, New York, 14 November 2001, lot 57 Private Collection Galerie Bärbel Grässlin, Frankfurt Luhring Augustine, New York Private Collection (acquired from the above in 2010) Sotheby’s, London, 17 October 2014, lot 15 Acquired at the above sale by the present owner Exhibited Frankfurt, Galerie Bärbel Grässlin, Broken Centimeters, MM, Ss.Ss.R., 29 July - 5 September 1992 ZKM Museum für Neue Kunst Karlsruhe, Martin Kippenberger Das 2. Sein, 8 February - 27 April 2003, p. 196 New York, Luhring Augustine, Twenty Five, 8 May - 19 June 2010 Portland, Oregon, Portland Art Museum, Martin Kippenberger, 22 October 2011 - 19 February 2012 Literature Gisela Capitain, Regina Fiorito and Lisa Franzen, eds., Martin Kippenberger Catalogue Raisonné of the Paintings, Volume Three: 1987 - 1992, London, 2016, no. MK.P 1992.04, pp. 418-419 (illustrated, p. 419) Kippenberger: Hand Painted Pictures, exh. cat., Skarstedt Gallery, New York, 2017, p. 22
Martin Kippenberger, Ohne Titel (aus der Serie Lieber Maler, male mir), acrylic on canvas, 1981, Museum of Modern Art, New York. © Estate of Martin Kippenberger, Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne.
Exuding Martin Kippenberger’s distinct eccentricity and raw energy, Ohne Titel (Meine Lügen sind ehrliche), 1992, highlights the multifarious questions that defne the artist’s self-portraits. Painted alongside his second major cycle of self-portraits, during his time split between the Greek island of Syros and his Frankfurt studio, the present work was executed in 1992. Moving on from his momentous Picasso self-portraits of 1988, Ohne Titel (Meine Lügen sind ehrliche) delves further into the artist’s psyche whilst presenting his body with unbridled honesty. Other works from the series are held in eminent collections, including the Centre Pompidou, Paris, the Setagaya Art Museum, Tokyo, The Flick Collection, Berlin, as well as the personal collections of Christopher Wool and Richard Prince. Inundated with detail, the present portrait is in keeping with Kippenberger’s portrayal of himself as an exposed, candid and pensive subject. Captivated yet simultaneously disenchanted by the ideal of the Romantic genius,
Martin Kippenberger, Ohne Titel (aus der Serie Selbstportraits), oil on canvas, 1988, Kravis Collection. © Estate of Martin Kippenberger, Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne. Image: Scala, Florence.
‘This was much more about inventing a new artist’s existence than about content—it was about the status of the artist as he kept reinventing himself.’ Friedrich Petzel, in Josephine von Perfall, ed. Kippenberger and Friends, Berlin, 2013, p.108
Martin Kippenberger, Ohne Titel (aus der Serie das Floß der Medusa), oil on canvas, 1996. Martin Kippenberger, Ohne Titel (aus der Serie Hand Painted Pictures), oil on canvas, 1992, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.
© Estate of Martin Kippenberger, Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne.
© Estate of Martin Kippenberger, Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne.
Kippenberger’s preoccupation with self-presentation derisively challenges tropes of the artistic ego. From the heraldic poses of his early self-portraits to the vulnerable fgures of his ultimate self-incarnation in Ohne Titel (aus der Serie das Floß der Medusa), Kippenberger continuously questions iconic art historical frameworks and deceives the established norms of portraiture in order to elevate the status of the sitter, namely through the use of serialisation. Spanning the entirety of his career, the artist’s intensive periods of self-portraiture can be assigned to four crucial years: Lieber Maler male Mir (Dear Painter Paint for Me) in 1981; the remarkable Picasso Portraits of 1988; the Hand Painted Pictures borne whilst the artist was on Syros; and his fnal coda and epic homage to Théodore Géricault’s The Raf of the Medusa from 1996. The cycle of Hand Painted Pictures constitutes a conscious examination of the artist’s past work, referencing in its title the direct connection linking the artist, his persona and his hand. In the present work, the artist plays
on the traditional and established principle of authorship. Having notably outsourced a signifcant amount of his work to assistants in the late 1980s, ‘controlled, but with their own means and talents’, Kippenberger’s Hand Painted Pictures, executed entirely by the artist himself, mark a turning point in his opus (Martin Kippenberger, quoted in Jutta Koether, ‘One Has to Be Able to Take It!’, November 1990 - May 1991 in Ann Goldstein, Martin Kippenberger: The Problem Perspective, exh. cat., The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, 2008, p. 316). Through the listless form of a skinny legged nude Olympic sprinter, the artist portrays himself in a theatrically troubled contortion, an exaggeratedly cramp pose which conjures the contemplative stature of Auguste Rodin’s The Thinker or Michelangelo’s Crouching Boy. Conversely, Kippenberger’s naked and kneeling figure echoes the coiled position of the Android T-800 in the futuristic Terminator films, 1984 and 1991.
Michelangelo, Crouching Boy, marble, 1530, Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg. Bridgeman Images.
Auguste Rodin, The Thinker, bronze, modelled in 1880-81, cast in 1924, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Pennsylvania, USA. Bridgeman Images.
Unwieldy and troubled, the artist’s fgure is squatted in a defensive position, his gaze fxed and arms trailing beneath his idiosyncratic beer-belly, epitomising the artist’s continuous fght with his own self-image. ‘The 1992 self-portraits dealt directly with this… The poses are ridiculous, theatrically contorted, and full of an exaggerated tension; he appears in comic struggle with himself… as a naked thin legged Olympian sprinter, an excellent dancer, and as a melancholic posed between a lifebelt and gallows: Kippenberger as a clown between performance and despair’ (Daniel Baumann, ‘The way you wear your hat’ in: Martin Kippenberger, exh. cat. Kunsthalle Basel, 1998, p. 68). At the time of the present work’s execution, the infamy of Kippenberger’s lore was at its height and the artist had withdrawn to Syros, removing himself from the art world. Here, during a lengthy stay with friend Michael Würthle (proprietor of the Paris Bar in Berlin), away from the debauchery of Cologne, Kippenberger produced the present dramatic self-portrait that provides an insight into the artist’s
fraught, vulnerable, yet determined state. Signifcantly, it was in Syros that Kippenberger came to bring two of his most ambitious and ruthless projects to life, his fctional universal subway system Metronet, and the extraordinary Museum of Modern Art Syros, an ephemeral museum set to challenge the traditional concept of the museum, an anti-museum with virtually no artworks and limited visitors. As fellow artist Helmut Middendorf recalls, Kippenberger ‘didn’t need all that self-display nonsense’ in Syros. ‘In Berlin and Cologne, it was like they fipped a switch to turn him on and he had to give them the Martin’ (Helmut Middendorf, quoted in Susan Kippenberger, Kippenberger: The Artist and his Families, Berlin, 2007, p. 436). Within the vast landscapes of the island, Kippenberger found a state of calm, referring to the ‘changing acupuncture from coming there + fying warmth – little lightning bolts of good mood beams’ (Martin Kippenberger quoted in, Susan Kippenberger, Kippenberger: The Artist and his Families, Berlin, 2007, p. 436).
‘The 1992 self-portraits dealt directly with this… The poses are ridiculous, theatrically contorted, and full of an exagerated tension; he appears in comic strugle with himself… as a naked thin leged Olympian sprinter, an excellent dancer, and as a melancholic posed between a lifebelt and gallows: Kippenberger as a clown between performance and despair.’ Daniel Baumann, ‘The way you wear your hat’ in: Martin Kippenberger, exh. cat. Kunsthalle Basel, 1998, p. 68.
The landing of the Android T-800 in the film Terminator, 1984.
Within the present composition, a lightning bolt strikes the artist’s profle. To the lef of his silhouette, the bolt comes down from the heavens, evoking at once Elysium, the ultimate resting place for the souls of the virtuous in Greek mythology, and the arrival of the Android T-800 in the Terminator flms. Kippenberger’s crouched fgure simulates the pose of the humanoid sent from the future to retroactively change the course of events, destroying the established landscape of his own future existence, and thus engaging in a dialogue relating to reincarnation and survival. Crucial to Kippenberger’s practice lie notions of continuity and change, ofen embodied by the concept of reincarnation and the recurring motif of the egg. In Ohne Titel (Meine Lügen sind ehrliche), the artist brings his conscious dismissal of an established style and continuous quest to reinvent himself to the fore, asserting that ‘an artist who opposes himself still has the best chances to reach some result’ (Martin Kippenberger, quoted in Jutta Koether, ‘One Has to Be Able to Take It!’, November 1990 - May 1991 in Ann Goldstein, Martin Kippenberger: The Problem Perspective, exh. cat., The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, 2008, p. 316).
Within Kippenberger’s cycle of 36 works, the artist frequently incorporates classical references, underlining the rich infuence of Greek antiquity on the origins of Western art history. Through the inclusion of Grecian architecture, mythological sources, poses garnered from Olympic athletes and classical statues, and the bold overlaying of Greek text, the artist anchors his composition to the Greek Island of Syros and the classical tradition. In the present work the text is transliterated, the phrase can be understood as a phonetically written German sentence: Meine Luegen sind ehrlich (my lies are honest ones). Placing what would appear to be a broken column at the fore of the composition, just within reach of his classical, athletic stature, Kippenberger alludes to the virtue of fortitude, a subject ofen employed by Renaissance artist’s to symbolise courage in times of pain or adversity. In another reading, the pedestal like column reveals itself to be a metal bin alongside the artist’s hunched, vulnerable and ungainly posture.
‘I realised that not having a style is also a style, and then I pursued this style.’
Replete with skewed, sardonically assumed classical tropes and references to contemporary culture, the bearded Socratic aesthete, the broken column and the silhouette of the android, the present work is a continuation of the artist’s playful vernacular. In line with his mysterious narrative and contradictory depictions of self, the present sombre, enigmatic and simultaneously vibrant painting retains Kippenberger’s essential message in fux. His perplexing amalgamation of visual sources stimulates an allusion of trickery or chicanery. An electrifying reckoning from the master of self-presentation and pictorial manipulation, Ohne Titel (Meine Lügen sind ehrliche) is simultaneously comical and sombre, earnest and destabilised, underscoring the inseparable bond between ego, life and art for Kippenberger.
The present work in progress. © Estate of Martin Kippenberger, Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne.
Property from an Important European Collection O
15. Franz West
Schnorre painted and plastered metal pole, gauze and hat, on painted wooden base 264 x 99 x 83 cm (103 7/8 x 38 7/8 x 32 5/8 in.) Executed in 1982-83. Estimate £150,000-200,000 $197,000-263,000 €173,000-230,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Gagosian Gallery, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner Exhibited New York, Gagosian Gallery, Franz West, Passstuecke, 18 March - 26 March 2008, pl. 15 (illustrated, titled Beggy) Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Red over Yellow, 21 June - 2 December 2017, pp. 13, 96, 98, 199 (illustrated, pp. 6, 13, 23, 94, 97, 99, 110, 124, 153, 169, 192)
‘Grab the object and carry it from pedestal to pedestal. Without this active reception, the work would remain somehow wanting, unfulflled.’ Franz West
An organic and dialogical sculpture composed of plaster, metal, gauze and paint, Franz West’s Schnorre (Beggy), 1982-83, is replete with corporal references. Emblematic of the artist’s tactile and inviting works, the present sculpture actively engages the viewer, prompting both physical and cognitive examination. Haptic and contoured, Schnorre departs from any classical notion of canonical sculpture. As part of the artist’s Passstücke (Adaptives), it exists alongside a cycle of unrecognisable objects that emerged in the mid-1970s and initiated West’s sculptural output. Spanning over forty years, West’s involvement in major international exhibitions – including his current retrospective at Tate Modern, London, his participation in the 44th Venice Biennale in 1990, Documenta IX in 1992 and Documenta X in 1997 – is a testament to his poignant contribution to the canon of contemporary art. Departing from the smooth, well-measured and ofen geometric forms associated with the vocabulary of modern sculpture, the artist’s compositions paved a new course for sculptural production in the 1980s. Merging papier-mâché and found objects, Schnorre perfectly typifes West’s distinct departure from the monumental stature of twentieth century sculpture. Moving away from the flattened, figurative surfaces that pervaded much of West’s oeuvre before his Passstücke, Schnorre is intrinsically abstract and amorphous, left only to be completed by the viewer’s perspective. Actively rejecting traditional modes of perception, the aesthetic, psychological and physical means which are traditionally designed to impact the viewer, the present work solicits discreet reflection and is exemplary of West’s capacity to destabilise the supposed ‘untouchable and sacrosanct’ facets of artistic production (Daniel Birnbaum, ‘A thousand words: Franz West’, Artforum, New York, February 1999, p. 84). As noted by Christine Macel ‘The Passstücke represent a new aesthetic that eschews all ideas of perfection or beauty in favour of the dirty, the wonky and even the deceptive. Despite this anti-aesthetic intention in which the ‘ugly’ ends up producing a feeling of attraction – a reversal at which West always excelled’ (Christine Macel, Franz West, exh. cat., Tate Modern, London, 2018, p. 23).
An anti-sculpture of sorts, the present work allows form, surface and the viewer’s movements to determine its setting and mechanisms. Having been positioned on a plinth by the artist in 2008, the object stood baseless until this date, eschewing any known categorisation. At the junction between a transportable everyday item and a formal sculpture, Schnorre takes inspiration from the African objects West’s uncle sold. ‘I looked at masks and wands, and I thought to myself that one should wear them and make movements with them’ (Franz West, quoted in Johannes Schlebrügge and Ines Turian eds., Franz West. Gesammelte Gespräche und Interviews, Cologne, 2005, p. 156). A point of departure for his Passstücke, ‘West retained his unorthodox position as a sculptor of in-between forms’ (Robert Fleck, Brice Curiger and Neal Benezra, Franz West, London, 1999, p. 28). Central to West’s practice are the artist’s titles and descriptions, perplexingly assigned in various languages – German, English and French among others. Herein, the title Schnorre identifes the object as a scrounger or beggar in German; a linguistic designation only to be reifed by Schnorre’s appearance, which visually dissects the familiar form of a headpiece atop its constitutive metal pole, thus playing on the action of begging and collecting change in a hat. Drawing closely on Ludwig Wittgenstein’s ‘Philosophical Investigations’, 1953, West further conveys the importance of naming a work by noting that ‘[Wittgenstein] compared the use of language to the use of tools such as hammers and nails. He maintained that the meaning of a word is its use and advanced the idea of language games. If these tools were abstract, then they were understood as art’ (Franz West, in conversation with Roxana Marcoci, ‘Franz West’, MoMA, online). Awash with contradictions, Schnorre represents the ultimate non-formalist work, synthesising art forms in a way that recalls the concept of the Gesamtkunstwerk (total work of art). West adroitly harnesses the object’s liminality, toying with titles, found objects, and the in-between nature of sculpture as static art, in ways that successfully bridge the casual and the dysfunctional. Exemplary of West’s wry wit, Schnorre allows chaos to reign, earnestly challenging conventional understandings of the sculptural medium as a stationary entity.
Franz West with the present work, 2008. © Lukas Schaller.
Property from an Important New York Collection
16. Andreas Gursky
May Day V signed ‘Andreas Gursky’ on a label afxed to the reverse c-print face-mounted to Plexiglas, in artist’s frame image 301.8 x 195.6 cm (118 7/8 x 77 in.) overall 323.8 x 218 cm (127 1/2 x 85 7/8 in.) Executed in 2006, this work is number 3 from an edition of 6. Estimate £450,000-650,000 $582,000-841,000 €513,000-741,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Sprüth Magers, Berlin Private Collection, New York Exhibited Munich, Haus der Kunst; Istanbul Museum of Modern Art; United Arab Emirates, Sharjah Art Museum, Andreas Gursky, 17 February 2007 - 29 January 2008 (another example exhibited) London, Monika Sprüth Philomene Magers; New York, Matthew Marks Gallery, Andreas Gursky, 23 March - 30 June 2007, pp. 40-41, p. 142 (another example exhibited and illustrated, p. 41) Kunstmuseum Basel, Andreas Gursky, 20 October 2007 - 24 February 2008, pp. 116, 121 (another example exhibited and illustrated, p. 116) Literature Ralf Biel and Sonja Feßel eds., Andreas Gursky Architecture, exh. cat., Institut Mathildenhöhe Darmstadt, 2008, fg. 16, p. 13 (another example illustrated)
Commanding in detail and towering in height, May Day V, 2006, captures the full vertical expanse of an eighteenstory building. Refective of two themes that captivated Andreas Gursky throughout his career – rave culture and architectural grandeur – the present work is the culmination of the photographer’s titular series. Documenting the German electronic festival Mayday, celebrated annually in Dortmund’s striking Westfalenhalle building, May Day V departs from the series’ traditional depiction of crowds, and focuses on the event’s venue and backstage activity. While other examples from the present edition of six are housed in esteemed institutions, including the Vanhaerents Art Collection, Brussels, and the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, earlier photographs from the May Day series were recently included in Gursky’s major retrospective at the Hayward Gallery in London in 2018. Harnessing a number of concerns that Gursky has been exploring for the past four decades, May Day V is a testament to the photographer’s attentive eye for order, nature and collective structures. Developed under the eminent tutelage of Bernd and Hilla Becher at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, Gursky’s photographic practice merges documentarian impulse with a manipulation of the image, and explores the politics of space in an increasingly globalised context. Framing contemporary human experience through a perfectly controlled lens, the artist proposes a new visual realm in which formal composition and socio-political commentary compellingly collide. Herein, the present work’s linear and homogeneous composition,
rooted in the Westfalenhalle’s pillar-based structure, attests to Gursky’s formal interests whilst simultaneously raising questions on notions of individuality and collectivity. Emblematic of Gursky’s signature ‘poly-ocular perspective’, May Day V is comprised of various shots of the Westfalenhalle executed at diferent times and from diferent angles. ‘You never notice arbitrary details in my work. On a formal level, the countless interrelated micro and macro structures are woven together, determined by an organisational principle’, mused the artist (Andreas Gursky, quoted in Andreas Gursky, exh. cat., Hayward Gallery, London, 2017, p. 5). May Day V amalgamates various fragments of the building to render Gursky’s ambitiously magnifed vision. Careful consideration reveals a humorous touch in the artist’s manipulation of the image, as the photograph contains within its anonymous crowds the silhouette of Gursky himself, perched amidst strangers on the sixth foor of the Westfalenhalle. Concealed in plain sight, Gursky challenges the so-called transparency and straightforwardness of the photographic medium, infusing it with a painterly nod by referring to a self-referential mise-en-abyme tradition. Exemplifed most notoriously by Velásquez’s discreet refection in Las Meninas, the practice of including oneself in the creation of an image blurs the line between presentation and representation. Known for warping reality to his own liking through tongue-in-cheek pictorial manipulations, Gursky here imparts himself with the power of divine ubiquity, placing his body at once within and without the photographic lens.
Bernd and Hilla Becher, Framework Houses, 21 gelatin silver prints, 1959-73, The Museum of Modern Art, New York. © Estate Bernd & Hilla Becher, represented by Max Becher, 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
A detail of the present work, featuring the artist Andreas Gursky.
‘The places are not meant to be specifcally described, but are meant to function more as metaphors. I am interested in global viewpoints in today’s social utopias.’ Andreas Gursky
Allowing a clean, unobstructed perspective, the Westfalenhalle’s gridded disposition transforms the building into a penetrable structure gleaming from within. As vast foors succeed one another in neatly organised rows and columns, the building’s geometric composition emulates the velocious motions of a flmstrip, encapsulating an intriguing balance between staticity and movement. This efect ultimately echoes Gursky’s resounding statement: ‘When you reach a certain height, you can show the spaciousness of the subject, but at the same time the character of the picture becomes much more technical and loses its poetry. If you fy in too close, then the picture becomes narrative and the generality that I’m seeking loses its clarity and sharpness’ (Andreas Gursky, quoted in Andreas Gursky, exh. cat., Hayward Gallery, London, 2017, p. 118). Gursky’s façade works are compelling examples of this motif: they picture the vastness of a single structure yet attend to the exactness of context – efectively reconciling materiality and space.
17. Ai Weiwei
Coca-Cola Vase painted Han dynasty vase (206 BC-220 AD) 35 x 50 x 27 cm (13 3/4 x 19 5/8 x 10 5/8 in.) Painted in 2015. Estimate £250,000-350,000 $328,000-459,000 €285,000-399,000 ‡ Provenance Faurschou Foundation, Copenhagen (acquired directly from the artist in 2015) Acquired from the above by the present owner
Andy Warhol, You’re In, spray paint on Coca-Cola bottles and wooden crate, 1967. The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh. © 2019 The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc. / Licensed by DACS, London.
Adorning a treasured relic from the second imperial dynasty of China (206 BC – 220 AD) with the iconic crimson Coca-Cola logo, Ai Weiwei’s Coca-Cola Vase, 2015, coalesces ancient tradition and contemporary iconography. The aged surface of the urn, brimming with historical import, is smeared by bright commercial script and suddenly re-purposed into a symbol of modernity, boldness, and defance. As it wraps itself around the vestige, the logo invites the viewer to refect on a number of present-day issues, including the crucial subject of mass production. Previously housed in the Faurschou Foundation, Copenhagen, Coca-Cola Vase belongs to an ongoing cycle of works, other examples of which are held in such eminent institutions as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Executed in 2015, Coca-Cola Vase belongs to Ai’s eponymous series commenced shortly afer the artist’s return to China in 1993, following a decade of living in America. Having arrived in the United States in 1981, Ai discovered Andy Warhol’s iconic processed images. Within a culture where ‘the richest consumers buy essentially the same thing as the poorest...a Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking’ (Andy Warhol, quoted in The Philosophy of Andy Warhol: (From A to B and Back Again), New York, 1975, p. 100). Refecting on the precious quality of Han dynasty urns in contrast to the easy accessibility and pervasiveness of sof-drink CocaColas, Ai remarked, ‘every day I went to the antique market, but I didn’t have much to do. So one day I Coca Cola’d a pot, because it reminded me of a Coca-Cola souvenir plate I once
bought in Atlantic City’ (Ai Weiwei, quoted in ‘It Is Impossible to Simplify My Feelings About China: Ai Weiwei on His Controversial Art, in 2006’, ARTnews, 7 August 2015, online). Shedding the urns of their anthropological importance, Ai’s irreverent gesture transforms them into products of contemporary culture. The son of one of modern China’s most renowned poets, Ai Weiwei was born in Beijing in 1957. In 1979, the artist became a member of Xingxing, the frst avant-garde group in China afer the revolution. Ever since, his work has continued to strike controversy, tackling issues of identity through the exploration of crafsmanship and the deconstruction of social and popular infuence. Particularly pertinent to contemporary China, these concerns are made relevant notably by the loss of tradition and historical culture due to rapid modernisation and the adoption of a global economy. Philip Tinari remarked: ‘[Ai Weiwei’s] gestural practice of defacing and destroying these ancient objects to transform them into works of contemporary art, provide the illusion of clarity alongside the persistent spectre of ambiguity. What appears at frst like the sublimation of an ancient object’s fnancial value and cultural worth into a diferent yet parallel carrier of updated value and worth also serves as a satire of the ruling regime’s approach to its patrimony, and of contemporary China’s curious relation to its past, a situation where destruction of historical artefacts happens almost daily’ (Philip Tinari, Ai Weiwei: Dropping the Urn Ceramic Works, 5000 BCE-2010 CE, exh. cat., Arcadia Unversity Art Gallery, Philadelphia, 2010).
‘It’s about communicating. It’s about how we use the language which can be part of our history or part of another history, and how we transform it into today’s language.’ Ai Weiwei
Ai Weiwei, Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn, black and white photographs, 1995. © Ai Weiwei 2019.
The artist’s approach to the relic is undoubtedly amongst the most innovative in the canon of contemporary art. Despite coming from a country that is experiencing one of the most rapid periods of economic and social change to date, the artist manages to draw consistent associations between the past and the present, the individual and the mass culture into which we are born. The Coca-Cola series addresses the principal motifs of ceramic tradition whilst engaging with contemporary issues on a visceral and theoretical level. Having long attracted international attention for questioning the Chinese government’s policies on democracy, human rights and free speech, Ai persistently engages with concepts of appropriation and exploitation. His deliberate destruction of the natural status of a valuable object in the service of a brand-new artwork refers back to this now established tradition of iconoclasm and appropriation. ‘The actions imposed on antique Neolithic and Han pots represent the destruction of conventional or established values’ (Karen Smith, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Bernard Fibicher, Ai Weiwei, New York, 2009, p. 104). Coca-Cola Vase interrogates the way cultural heritage is reliant on familiar symbols. Brandishing a consumerist image onto an endangered artefact, Ai shrewdly challenges the viewer to reconsider the notion of collective identity.
18. Grayson Perry
Sunset through Net Curtains stamped with the artist’s monogram and titled ‘sunset through net curtains’ lower edge glazed ceramic 52.4 x 28.9 x 26.7 cm (20 5/8 x 11 3/8 x 10 1/2 in.) Executed in 1996. Estimate £80,000-120,000 $105,000-158,000 €92,000-138,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Anthony d’Ofay Gallery, London Private Collection Sotheby’s, London, October 15, 2007, lot 120 Acquired at the above sale by the present owner Exhibited London, Anthony d’Ofay Gallery, Grayson Perry, w13 December 1996 - 15 February 1997 Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum, no. 28 (p. 104, illustrated, pp. 22-23); London, Barbican Art Gallery, Grayson Perry - Guerilla Tactics, 18 May - 2 November 2002
Exemplary of Grayson Perry’s distinctly varied practice, Sunset through Net Curtains, 1996, defly combines the functional, decorative and aesthetic qualities of the ceramic medium. Perry has cemented international recognition through flm, performance, printmaking, photography, embroidery and ceramics, ceaselessly engaging with the contemporary art world in a manner both critical and poetic. Attesting to its importance, the present work was included in the artist’s seminal exhibition Guerrilla Tactics, at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam and the Barbican Art Gallery, for which he was awarded the Turner Prize in 2003. In Sunset through Net Curtains layers of metallic glaze and natural motifs are interspersed, transposing images from historical paintings and contemporary sporting culture onto a traditionally shaped vessel. While the surface of the object appears innocuous, presenting blooming fowers in a delicate palette, upon closer inspection curious emblems and personal references emerge. Occupying almost one side of the object, the solemn gaze of an androgynous fgure is juxtaposed against architectural images and foral scenes, on another side a heavily delineated silhouette sits hunched over a computer screen projecting a face akin to the artist’s refection. The entire surface of the vessel, thickly layered with diverse imagery, is flled with difering images of identity and art historical and contemporary ideals occupy the plane. Using the urn as a culturally subversive vehicle through which to materialise a humorous social commentary, Perry activates a dialogue with the viewer on social status, gender politics, sexuality and religion. The glistening lustre and detailed ornamentation are mere distractions to mystify the artist’s satirical discourse; subtle outlines deliver a seemingly graceful surface, whilst concurrently revealing the artist’s wry humour. Instilled with Perry’s remarkable imaginative fair, skilled crafsmanship and decorative grandeur, the present work unravels layers of art historical veneration whilst championing both social commentary and fairy-tale fantasy. Technically sophisticated, each of his vases, rich in texture, glaze and imagery, takes months to complete. Remarking on the gravitas of his ceramic creations, the artist noted: ‘My pots always carry with them the intellectual baggage of the history of ceramics, its archaeology, geography and value system. But up close, the content of my work can confound all that’ (Grayson Perry, quoted in Jacky Klein, Grayson Perry, London, 2009, p. 242).
19. Damien Hirst
Serenity signed and titled ‘Damien Hirst (Serenity)’ on the reverse butterfies and household gloss on canvas, in artist’s frame diameter 223.5 cm (87 7/8 in.) Executed in 2007. Estimate £500,000-700,000 $647,000-905,000 €570,000-798,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance White Cube, London Acquired from the above by the present owner
Serenity, 2007, is an exquisite example of Damien Hirst’s series of Kaleidoscope Paintings. Presenting a myriad of delicate iridescent butterfy wings against a clear backdrop, the work is both visually delectable and conceptually profound. The weightlessness and fragility of the butterfy’s wings is blurred into a shimmering abstraction that investigates notions of transience and vulnerability. Commenting on their deeper, bitter-sweet meaning, Hirst describes them as ‘pathways through the darkness’ able to propulse the viewer into an imaginary space between life and death (Damien Hirst, quoted in Amie Corry, ‘Light in the Darkness’, Damien Hirst: The Complete Psalm Paintings, London, 2015, p. 11). A one of a kind contemporary vanitas, the present canvas departs from the stained glass window design which inspired many works from this series. Whilst the thematic trope of life and death has continuously underpinned the conceptual core of Hirst’s work since his graduation from Goldsmith’s University, London, the artist’s butterfy paintings frst emerged in 1989. Hirst confessed that the genesis of these works happened almost by chance: ‘I [wanted] it to look like an artist’s studio where he had had coloured canvases wet and the butterfies had landed in them. I remember painting something white once and fies landing on it, thinking “Fuck!” but then thinking it was funny.
This idea of an artist trying to make a monochrome and being fucked up by fies landing in the paint or something like that… The death of an insect that still has this really optimistic beauty of a wonderful thing’ (Damien Hirst, quoted in Mirta D’Argenzio, ‘A Diferent Kind of Love: Damien Hirst Interviewed’, Damien Hirst: The Agony and the Ecstasy, exh. cat., Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli, Naples, 2004, p. 83). Representative of Hirst’s artistic tone, mediating levity and irony, Serenity encapsulates the artist’s exquisite command of balance and subtle thematic complexities. Innocuously charming at first glance, the present work takes on sombre associations upon closer inspection, transcending the beautiful appearance of the butterflies’ colourful wings to bring attention to their crystallised state. The butterfly’s life, punctuated by the cycles of being a caterpillar, morphing into a pupa finally becoming a butterfly is a powerful metaphor for life itself, containing within it the potent mysteries of death, reincarnation and resurrection. In Hirst’s own words, ‘You have to find universal triggers, everyone’s frightened of glass, everyone’s frightened of sharks, everyone loves butterflies’ (Damien Hirst, quoted in Gordon Burn and Stuart Morgan eds., I Want To Spend The Rest Of My Life Everywhere, With Everyone, One To One, Always, Forever, Now, London, 1997, p. 132).
‘Hirst is essentially a romantic artist, amazed by the sweep of life, from its grandest themes to its grittiest detail... His work is essentially life-afrming, even at its most chilling moments.’ Richard Shone, ‘Damien Hirst: A Power to Amaze’, Damien Hirst: Pictures from the Saatchi Gallery, London, 2002, p. 85.
Damien Hirst, Posterity - The Holy Place, butterflies and household gloss on canvas, 2006. © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS/ Artimage 2019. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates Ltd.
20. Cecily Brown
Armed and Fearless signed and dated ‘Cecily Brown 2014’ on the reverse oil on linen 195.6 x 139.7 cm (77 x 54 7/8 in.) Painted in 2014. Estimate £600,000-800,000 $789,000-1,050,000 €690,000-920,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Gagosian Gallery, Paris Acquired from the above by the present owner Exhibited Paris, Gagosian Gallery, Cecily Brown, 19 October - 20 December 2014, n.p. (illustrated)
Scintillating with riotous force, Armed and Fearless, 2014, is a delectable example of Cecily Brown’s distinctive pictorial repertoire. Though abstract at frst glance, the present work transforms into a complex narrative upon closer inspection, revealing delineations of bodies and faces amidst a landscape of amalgamated lines. The work provides insight into the artist’s unique working method that blends various legacies of Western painting – the dynamism of Rubens and Baroque art, the feeting touch of Impressionist masters, and the lyrical fare of Abstract Expressionism. Powerfully evocative, the painting touches on themes that have come to characterise Brown’s oeuvre, employing brushwork as a salient metaphor for love and sensual encounters. Included in Brown’s frst solo exhibition in Paris in 2014, Armed and Fearless belongs to a series that exemplifes a loosening of the artist’s style. Upon viewing the artist’s pivotal show at Gagosian Gallery, French art critic Valérie Duponchelle compared Brown’s fresh palette to the bright colours of David Hockney, and her intimate subjects to the sensual canvases of Édouard Manet. The group of painting exhibited, including Armed and Fearless, demonstrated Brown’s ease in balancing fuid gestures and vibrant colours; pulsating with excess, it typifed the crux of the artist’s animated oeuvre, translating energy into tangible, coloured matter. In the present work, visceral strokes of feshy pinks emerge from a landscape of atmospheric blues and greens, adopting the shape of nude bodies enmeshed in verdant fauna. Providing further insight into the composition’s intimate subject, the work’s title, Armed and Fearless, echoes a discreet line from Walt Whitman’s poem We Two Boys Together Clinging. Forming part of the poet’s Calamus, a short assemblage of poems that is believed to contain Whitman’s clearest expressions on sensual love, We Two Boys Together Clinging is a vivid formulation of the sensual tenderness shared by two lovers. The poem has had an enduring efect on contemporary literature and art alike, namely inspiring David Hockney’s 1961 painting of the same name. Portraying a couple locked in embrace, Hockney’s work proposes a more explicit representation of the scene at hand, and, laying out Whitman’s reverberated words against his two protagonists’ intertwined chests, weaves a complex composition that compounds poetry and painting. Brown’s painting ofers a more open-ended painterly rendering: in her work, the human silhouette that is easiest to decipher turns his back to the viewer in a corner of the canvas, resting like a siren in a sea of earnest strokes. The character’s nudity attests to the intimacy of the depicted scene, yet the composition’s overarchingly chaotic nature eschews formulaic precision.
WE two boys together clinging, One the other never leaving, Up and down the roads going, North and South excursions making, Power enjoying, elbows stretching, fngers clutching, Armed and fearless, eating, drinking, sleeping, loving, No law less than ourselves owning, sailing, soldiering, thieving, threatening, Misers, menials, priests alarming, air breathing, water drinking, on the turf or the sea-beach dancing, Cities wrenching, ease scorning, statutes mocking, feebleness chasing, Fulflling our foray. Walt Whitman, ‘We Two Boys Together Clinging’, Leaves of Grass, 1855.
David Hockney, We Two Boys Together Clinging, oil on board, 1961, Collection Arts Council, Southbank Centre, London. © David Hockney. Image: Prudence Cuming Associates.
Peter Paul Rubens, The Consequences of War, oil on canvas, 1637-38 Palazzo Pitti, Florence. Bridgeman Images.
Over the course of her career, Brown’s stylistic development has been guided by evolving explorations of the relationship between abstraction and fguration. Whilst elusive bodily fragments have charged Brown’s compositions with sensuous connotations since the early 1990s, the artist has been gesturing more and more towards pictorial implicitness, letting her abstract strokes become a self-sufcient metaphor for sensuality. As Brown noted two years prior to the execution of this work: ‘I like the fact that because my earlier work was so known for having erotic contents, I actually need to give very little now and it’s seen as erotic or hinting at erotic’ (Cecily Brown, quoted in ‘New York Minute: Cecily Brown,’ Another, 14 September 2012, online). In Armed and Fearless, smears and stabs of paint enhance the illusion of motion animating Brown’s twirling bodies. Commenting on the strategic translation of the theme of intimacy onto technique itself, she remarked: ‘I am not looking to paint the sexual act but rather to capture the intensity tied to sex’s inherent vital force’ (Cecily Brown, quoted in ‘Cecily Brown nous en fait voir de toutes les couleurs’, Paris Match, 2 November 2014, online).
In contrast to other artists of the Young British Artists generation, who branched out into varied sorts of artistic production following the critical 1990s, Brown has remained unequivocally focused on the painted medium throughout her career. She has continuously celebrated the qualities of oil paint, namely its extraordinary ability to catch light and convey fleshly physicality. The present work exhibits the artist’s prodigious skill in to retaining a balanced composition despite unbridled strokes, harnessing a mass of transient swathes to form a single entity. As such, Armed and Fearless best encapsulates Cecily Brown’s desire to reflect the relentlessly complex gist of life: ‘The viewer is a living, breathing being that moves about in space and I want the painting to be experienced like that’, she remarked. ‘I want the experience of looking at it to be very much like the experience of walking through the world’ (Cecily Brown, ‘I take things too far when painting’, The Guardian, 20 September 2009, online).
21. Leon Kossof
Stormy Summer Day, Dalston Lane oil on board 105.1 x 122.6 cm (41 3/8 x 48 1/4 in.) Painted in 1975, this work will be included in the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of the oil paintings of Leon Kossof. Estimate £380,000-580,000 $496,000-756,000 €434,000-662,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance LA Louver Gallery, Los Angeles Sidney Copilow Client Trust (acquired from the above in 1979) LA Louver Gallery, Los Angeles Private Collection Exhibited London, Fischer Fine Art Limited, Leon Kossof, Paintings and Drawings 1974 - 1979, May - June 1979, no. 3, p. 17 (illustrated, titled Dalston Lane, Summer Day No. 2) Venice CA, LA Louver Gallery, The Knot of Life: Paintings and Drawings by British Artists (Part II), 27 November - 22 December 1979 (illustrated, titled Dalston Lane, Summer Day No. 2) London, Tate Gallery, Leon Kossof, 6 June - 1 September 1996, no. 36, pp. 95, 165 (illustrated, p. 95) New York, Acquavella Galleries, Masterworks from Degas to Rosenquist, 6 February - 6 April 2012, no. 30 (illustrated, oil on canvas) New York, Ordovas Gallery, London Painters, 3 November 2017 - 18 January 2018, pp. 66-67, 85 (illustrated, pp. 67, 85) Literature Robert Pincus-Witten, ‘Contemporizing the Figure: This Knot of Life’, Artweek, vol. 10, no. 42, 15 December 1979, p. 16 (illustrated) Marina Vaizey, ‘Leon Kossof’, Art International, vol. 23, no. 5-6, September 1979, pp. 103–8 (illustrated) Iain Sinclair, Hackney, That Rose-Red Empire, London, 2009, p. 221 William Davie, ‘London Painters’, Wall Street International Magazine, 19 April 2018, online
‘London, like the paint I use, seems to be in my bloodstream. It’s always moving – the skies, the streets, the buildings. The people who walk past me when I draw have become part of my life.’ Leon Kossof
An adroit rendering of Leon Kossof’s view of Dalston Lane from his studio window, Stormy Summer Day, Dalston Lane, 1975, exemplifes the artist’s continued depiction of London’s inimitable soul, dexterously carried out for over seven decades. Coalescing muted tones, energetic dabs, and angular lines, the present work epitomises Kossof’s favoured theme with unmatched verve, capturing London’s unique architecture and grisaille light whilst imparting the odd buildings and lamp posts with delectable hints of gleaming colour. Having lef London only twice in his life, once as an evacuee, and a second time during his military service from 1945 to 1948, Kossof formed an attachment to his native city that penetrates the very core of his work. Exemplifying the touching proximity existing between the artist and his almost talismanic subject of choice, Stormy Summer Day, Dalston Lane was notably included in his major retrospective at the Tate Gallery, London, in 1996. Consumed by the streets, subway stations, and monuments adorning his revered city, it was not London’s cosmopolitan edge or perceived glamour the appealed to Kossof, but rather its ageing fabrics, overlooked vistas, and everyday scenes. Echoing Walter Sickert’s compositions, which famously shed light on the discreet lives of Londoners in the frst half of the twentieth century, Kossof’s portrayals of his kin and surroundings similarly attended to the shadowy corners and feeting moments of life. Breathing refreshing honesty into the canon of modern painting, Kossof crystallised locations that traced his every movement: frst vested signifcantly with the depiction of his early working space in Willesden, the artist subsequently began portraying the neighbourhood of Dalston, upon moving his studio there in 1972. As expressed in a rare interview in 2013, Kossof was preoccupied with ‘the kind of landscapes that many people would hesitate to regard as “scenic”, but that carry their own rough loveliness’ (Leon Kossof, quoted in ‘Leon Kossof’s love afair with London’, The Guardian, 27 April 2013, online). From the windows of his studio, he studied how the light would fall on nearby buildings in the changing seasons, producing inimitable variations on a single theme.
Displaying the artist’s sensibility towards his city, the intimate tonalities pervading Kossof’s painterly depictions are equally a refection of his loaded cultural past. Born to frst generation Jewish Ukrainian immigrants some twenty years before World War II, Kossof witnessed the persecution of people whose identity, bar their place of residence, were formally aligned with his. Protected by London’s sustained independence during the war, the artist, throughout his life, continued to view the city as a haven of sorts – one he depicted with comforting, quiet tones. He projected an air of familiarity on London’s peculiar buildings and infallible walls, as if they were an extension of his own home. On the present work, William Davie remarked: ‘His thickly loaded brush and dense packing of colours that have spent too long together and turned into a sludge of browns and greys, like muddy snow, are built of the canvas so that Kossof can then force and image out of it. This has been refned to an act of alchemic balance so that the technique of Kossof’s painting never overpowers the image brought to life in it, as seen in Stormy Summer Day, Dalston Lane’ (William Davie, ‘London Painters’, Wall Street International Magazine, 19 April 2018, online).
Frank Auerbach, Primrose Hill, oil paint on board, 1967-8. Tate Collection, London. © Frank Auerbach, courtesy Marlborough.
Property from the Collection of the Kasama Nichido Museum of Art
22. Giorgio Morandi
Natura morta signed ‘Morandi’ lower edge oil on canvas 30.2 x 40.4 cm (11 7/8 x 15 7/8 in.) Painted circa 1952. Estimate £600,000-800,000 $776,000-1,030,000 €684,000-913,000 ‡ ♠ Provenance Curt Valentin Gallery, New York Russell Hauser, New York Thence by decent Christie’s, New York, 12 November 1985, lot 68 Galerie Malingue, Paris Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1986 Literature Marilena Pasquali, Morandi. Opere catalogate tra il 1985 e il 2000, Bologna, 2000, no. 1952/4, p. 61 (illustrated) Marilena Pasquali, Giorgio Morandi. Catalogo generale. Opere schedate dal 1985, Pontedera, 2016, no. 1952/4, p. 127 (illustrated)
A delectable example of Giorgio Morandi’s still life arrangements, Natura morta, circa 1952, captures the Italian artist’s prodigious ability to galvanise visions of the everyday, transforming bowls, pots and bottles into magnetic protagonists. Deployed over the course of ffy years, Morandi’s thematic practice breathed new life into the microcosmic category of still lifes, dexterously adapting the age-old genre to the artist’s own stylistic inclinations. Touching on vocabularies of fguration and abstraction, the present work exemplifes Morandi’s distinctive colour palette and rigorous sense of construction, whilst simultaneously highlighting his exquisite command of space, light, form, and colour. Rarely leaving his native Bologna, Morandi frequently infused his canvases with the stillness of his city’s aura. ‘To see one of [Morandi’s] pictures is to know his character, his family, his home, his street, his town’, remarked his friend Leo Longanesi. ‘His colours veiled in dust [...] His is the delicate, weightless light that flters into his street’ (Leo Longanesi, ‘Giorgio Morandi’, L’Italiano 3, 16-17 December 1928). Closely gathered ‘like trees and bushes, or a group of people posing in front of a photograph’, Natura morta’s unmoving subjects are rendered almost indistinguishable from the medium through which they are portrayed, refecting not only the luminescence of oil paint but also the earthy hues that defned
Morandi’s immediate surroundings (Andrew Forge, Giorgio Morandi, exh. cat., The Arts Council London, 1970, p. 8). Theatrically orchestrated across the width of a tabletop, they paradoxically fade into their muted setting. As humble and charismatic characters, they echo the enchanting tropes of Morandi’s captivating oeuvre. Drawing from Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin’s naturalistic tabletop scenes in early years, Morandi’s work subsequently eschewed realistic likeness in favour of more essential and evocative representations. Buttressed by his religious following of art world developments through the frequent scrutiny of art journals, the artist experienced Impressionist works in the fesh for the frst time in 1911, on the occasion of a Roman exhibition showcasing paintings by Claude Monet. This visit had an enduring impact on his practice; from then onward, Morandi imparted his still lifes with hints of imprecision that weaved a union between representation and sensation. The painter’s engagement with the Pittura Metafsica group, heralded by Giorgio de Chirico, Carlo Carrà and Filippo de Pisis, equally motivated a stylistic shif. The movement’s rejection of Futurist iconoclasm in favour of a more poetic style, presaging the dream-like aesthetic of Surrealism, pushed Morandi towards a more contemplative approach, and emphasised the gravitas of his painted vessels.
Wayne Thiebaud, Cut Meringues, oil on canvas, 1961, Museum of Modern Art, New York. © Wayne Thiebaud/VAGA at ARS, NY and DACS, London 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
‘I believe that nothing can be more abstract, more unreal, than what we actually see.’ Giorgio Morandi
Giorgio Morandi in his studio, circa 1960.
Giorgio Morandi’s atelier on via Fondazza 36, Bologna, April 1950s. © Photo: Walter Mori\Mondadori Portfolio. Image: Getty Images.
‘I am essentially a painter of the kind of still life composition that communicates a sense of tranquillity and privacy, moods which I have always valued above all else’. Giorgio Morandi
While Morandi’s early paintings made use of an accentuated colour palette and an exact rendering of perspective, works from the late 1940s onward became increasingly geometric and abstract, dispensing with prominent shades to make room for dry angles and essential lines. An increased economy of means is obvious in the present work: its shapes and colours seem to progress from one another organically, punctuated by visible traces of expressive brushwork. A collection of miscelleaneous volumes in space, Natura morta’s objects are as close to artistic abstraction as they are to algorithmic geometry. The repetition of colour deployed amidst the composition’s defly stacked vessels amplifes this efect, and illustrates Morandi’s belief that, ‘The great book of nature is written in mathematical language. Its characters are triangles, circles, and other geometrical fgures’ (Giorgio Morandi, radio interview for Voice of America, 25 April 1957, in Vitali, Giorgio Morandi pittore, p. 86). Prodigiously balancing contrasting impressions of fatness and depth, Natura morta’s impastoed brushwork highlights the composition’s monochromatic background. Embedding clear fgurative expression within a clean, unclotted setting, the painting straddles two- and three-dimensionality, in ways that are reminiscent of Paul Cézanne’s organic compositions. As such, the items populating Morandi’s paintings are not
merely represented but embodied and vivifed; their inherent phenomenological aspects touch on intangible notions of energy and expressive abstraction. As remarked by James Thrall Soby, ‘Morandi was not simply a painter of bottles and occasional landscapes but a man intent on exploring subtle equations of forms, placing and atmospheric efects’ (James Thrall Soby, ‘A visit to Morandi’, Giorgio Morandi, London, 1970, p. 5). These forms and efects, in turn, produce an irrepressible aura that transcends the descriptive qualities of still life painting. Though dexterously concentrated in space, Morandi’s evocative embodiment of mundanity goes beyond the confnes of the canvas. Reminding the viewer of the life that surrounds the painterly act, the present work summons external associations, conveying the idea of an artist who arranges, rearranges and observes laid-out compositions, in order to breathe in the reality of the scene before him. Coalescing visions of what is there and what is not, Morandi harnesses the powerfully evocative magic of still lifes. His quiet and ethereal painterly universe bred a similarly enduring legacy, rooted in the part-abstract, part-realistic depiction of ordinary objects, as wondrously materialised by Wayne Thiebaud’s shelved cakes and Philip Guston’s enigmatic items placed in rows.
Lucio Fontana: from Figuration to Abstraction. Property from a Distinguished Private Italian Collection
If spark had a name and surname, it would be Lucio Fontana - as long as ‘spark’ designates an ensemble of creativity, taste, technical virtuosity and, above all, a quintessentially free attitude to the act of creation. Fontana has extraordinary knowledge of every form of fgurative expression, which he ofen shatters with ironic fervour. Thus, with his constant boutades, he moved more waters and originated more movements than a library of aesthetic essays and artistic manifestos. Constantly walking on the edge of taste and intellectual twists, he remained based on solid ground in terms of formal research. How many trumpets of judgement were silenced by the cheerful allegretto of his exciting fanfare? Celebrating poetic freedom, and enjoying the opportunity to always discover new and sweeter mediums to express his art, Fontana never insisted on the triumph of his best fndings, nor did he turn them into academic lullabies.
And here are these ceramics –the extreme sophistication of an opaque coat of paint laid on the purest form. What is essential is enough, there is no need for extravagant crafsmanship. The adorned yet simple gesture is carved into the terracotta and the borders of the slashes emphasise the relationship between gesture and colour with the play of light and shadow. The efect evokes an embossed craquelé, of which the subtle and vibrant fow is paused and punctuated by the cornerstones of the holes. Here, Fontana reaches the efect of the most ancient ceramics, inscribing the hieroglyphics of his fantasy on them and modulating the shades of his graceful elegance onto their surface.
Lucio Fontana commenced his sculptural practice as an apprentice in his father’s frm, where he made funerary busts out of gesso and marble. He subsequently enrolled at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera, in 1928, training as a neo-Classical sculptor under professor Adolf Wildt. Departing from Wildt’s traditional approach, Fontana began looking for modern vitality in art. As he recalled in an interview in 1943: ‘I took a great lump of plaster, gave it a rough shape of a seated man and then threw tar over it. Just like that, as a violent reaction’ (Lucio Fontana, quoted in Lucio Fontana: Materia Spazio Concetto, Milan, 1993, p. 10). Alongside Giuseppe Mazzotti, a Futurist ceramicist from Albissola, Fontana began to tackle a variety of subjects spanning warriors, saints and sea creatures, in a visual syntax both fgurative and abstract. The artist imparted his creations with an unbridled sense of motion and vigour, until fnally taking a radical turn towards abstraction in the mid to late-1950s.
From 1950 to 1956, Fontana actualised the burgeoning radicalism he had expressed in his Spatialist Manifesto of 1947. ‘What we want to do is to unchain art from matter, to unchain the sense of the eternal from the preoccupation with the immortal’, he wrote. ‘And we don’t care if a gesture, once performed, lives a moment or a millennium, since we are truly convinced that once performed it is eternal’ (Lucio Fontana, quoted in ‘First Spatialist Manifesto’, 1947, Lucio Fontana, Milan, 1998, pp. 117-118). While Fontana engaged with abstraction particularly in the early 1950s,nonetheless he continued to create gestural and fgurative ceramics, sacred fgures, and masks, including Corrida, 1950. In the second half of the decade, however, Fontana ceased his fgurative work and the artist’s Spatialist production took over the quasi-entirety of his oeuvre: tubular vases, ceramics, and terracotta plates were lef gracefully bare, marked only with holes and scratches. Concetto spaziale, 1957, is an adroit representation of this artistic development.
Franco Russoli, ‘Fontana’, trans., Gallera del Cavallino, Venice, 28 September - 12 October 1957
The artist with lot 24 at Galleria del Cavallino, Venice, Fontana, 1957. © Lucio Fontana/ Milan SIAE/ DACS, London 2019.
‘It was symphony: intense, rhythmical, engaging; from the sculptures to the ceramics, from the surface to the substance.’ Giorgio Cortenova, Lucio Fontana. Metafore barocche, exh. cat., Verona 2002-2003.
Situated either side of Fontana’s conceptual trajectory, the present works trace the artist’s stylistic progression over the course of the 1950s. Corrida, through the curvilinear shapes of the bull’s writhing body, unites the figurative and the fantastical, conjuring an amorphous organism sui generis. Rendered in a form that is suggestive of a sacrificial animal whilst simultaneously evoking a visceral and abstract register, Corrida displays the creative potency of Fontana’s ceramic artistry at a critical point in his career, when the crux of his practice progressed from vigorous figuration to numinous abstraction. In Corrida Fontana’s dexterous manipulation of clay, touching on the various diferent qualities enabled by the medium, serves as a striking reminder of his masterful ability to synthesise diferent formal styles.
Concetto spaziale, 1957, is a quintessential example of Fontana’s eponymous series, that spanned both painting and ceramics. ‘I made a hole. Infnity passes through, light passes through, there’s no need to paint ... everyone thought I wanted to destroy but that’s not true, I created, not destroyed’, the artist observed (Lucio Fontana, quoted in Enrico Crispolti, Lucio Fontana, Milan, 1986, p. 19). Portable, movable and exposable, the work’s ceramic nature heightens the capacity for varying light sources to shine through its punctured holes. Exhibited at Fontana’s show held in 1957 at Galleria del Cavallino, Venice, Concetto spaziale is an iconic example of the artist’s abstract ceramic production. It demonstrates the plates’ rare beguiling quality: projecting diferent shafs of light through diferent angles, they materialise the foundational concepts the artist had intended for them to exude better than a canvas ever could.
Notably, the dates at which the present works were conceived mark two symbolic turning points in Fontana’s career. In 1950, the artist created his frst buchi (holes), paving the way for subsequent works of seminal importance. In 1958, just one year following the execution of the present Concetto spaziale, he introduced his second iconoclastic gesture: the tagli (slashes). Refective of Fontana’s groundbreaking contributions to postwar Italian art and post war art at large, these two ceramic objects epitomise the artist’s ability to attain the fourth dimension. ‘Man’s real conquest of space is the abandonment of earth, of the line of the horizon’, he declared, ‘And thus the fourth dimension is born; volume is now truly contained in space in all of its dimensions’ (Lucio Fontana, quoted at the IXth Milan Triennial, 1951, ‘Technical Manifesto’, Lucio Fontana, London, 1988, p. 82).
Property from a Distinguished Private Italian Collection
23. Lucio Fontana
Corrida signed and dated ‘L. Fontana 50’ on the reverse painted terracotta diameter 47 cm (18 1/ 2 in.) Executed in 1950, this work is registered with the Fondazione Lucio Fontana, Milan under the archive number 793/34. Estimate £120,000 - 180,000 $154,000-232,000 €137,000-205,00 ♠ Provenance Galleria il Mappamondo, Milan Acquired from the above by the present owner in the early 1990’s
Property from a Distinguished Private Italian Collection
24. Lucio Fontana
Concetto spaziale signed and dated ‘L. Fontana 57’ lower right painted terracotta diameter 47 cm (18 1/2 in.) Executed in 1957, this work is registered with the Fondazione Lucio Fontana, Milan under the archive number 793/8. Estimate £100,000-150,000 $131,000-196,000 €114,000-171,000 ♠ Provenance Galleria il Cavallino, Venice Galleria il Mappamondo, Milan Acquired from the above by the present owner in the early 1990s Exhibited Venice, Galleria del Cavallino, Fontana, 28 September - 12 October 1957 (illustrated, cover) Milan, Galleria del Naviglio, Lucio Fontana, 5 - 15 November 1957, n. p. (illustrated)
25. Alberto Burri
Combustione E 4 signed, titled and dated ‘COMBUSTIONE E4 BURRI 60’ on the reverse paper, acrylic and Vinavil on paper laid on canvas 70.8 x 100.1 cm (27 7/8 x 39 3/8 in.) Executed in 1960. Estimate £280,000-350,000 $363,000-453,000 €320,000-400,000 ♠ Provenance Galleria Blu, Milan Collection of Giorgio Rivabella, Alba Studio d’Arte Contemporanea Condotti 75, Rome Collection of Massimo Gatti, Rome Collection of Giuseppe Panza, Varese Private Collection, Italy Thence by descent to the present owner Exhibited London, Hanover Gallery, Alberto Burri, 29 March - 29 April 1960, no. 16 Milan, Galleria Toninelli, Alcuni aspetti della pittura contemporanea, December 1966 - January 1967, no. 3 Literature Françoise Choay, ‘Par delà l’image et le symbole: Alberto Burri’, Art International, vol. 5/6, June - August 1961, p. 31 (illustrated) Cesare Brandi, Burri, Rome, 1963, no. 292, p. 215 (illustrated) Fondazione Palazzo Albizzini, Contributi al catalogo sistematico, Città di Castello, 1990, no. 60.34, pl. 1922, pp. 446-7, p. 489 (illustrated, p. 447) Bruno Corà, ed., Alberto Burri: General Catalogue, Painting 1958-1978, vol. II, Perugia, 2015, no. 891, pp. 104-5, p. 397 (illustrated, p. 105) Rita Olivieri and Chiara Sarteanesi, ed., Alberto Burri: General Catalogue, Chronological Repertory 1945-1994, vol. VI, Perugia, 2015, no. 891 - i6034, p. 138 (illustrated)
Plunged in a mass of textural darkness, Combustione E 4, 1960 represents the apotheosis of Alberto Burri’s iconoclastic gesture. Lauded for his early work exploring processes of assemblage and construction, the artist later ventured towards new creative realms vested with ingenious methods of obliteration. The most striking materialisation of this artistic evolution took form in the artist’s Combustioni series, commenced in 1955 and revolving around the use of fre. A commanding example from this cycle of works, Combustione E 4, reveals the creative potential of destruction, and, like an abject landscape, conjures an irrepressible sense of urgency. Housed in a distinguished European collection, Combustione E 4 was previously owned by the prominent Italian collectors Giuseppe and Giovanna Panza. Assembling a collection of exquisite artworks from 1956 to 2010, Giuseppe Panza along with his wife Giovanna focused on Abstract Expressionist production, before moving on to Pop art, Minimalism, and Conceptualism. Usually selecting early works drawing from an artist’s most fertile period, the eminent duo built one of the largest and most signifcant collections of modern art. While an important portion from their collection was donated – over 350 works to the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum alone – some artworks, such as the present Combustione E 4, have enjoyed plural lives. Having formed part of Panza’s esteemed collection, this work is amongst Alberto Burri’s most accomplished Combustioni, emblematic of the artist’s pioneering use of fre whilst simultaneously refecting the exciting artistic possibilities that arose in Europe following the war. Replete with traces of the fre’s activity and brimming with textual complexities entailed by the surface’s combustion, Combustione E 4 is ceasessly referential of its own method of ignition. As multifarious blacks of varying texture and intensity mingle with one another on a unifed feld, the present work achieves an intricate tension between fatness and depth, transcending the limits of material destruction. In his quest to decipher the mechanisms and ramifcations of blazing matter, Burri transformed mere canvases into grandiose protagonists: his fames did not comply with any domestic or magnanimous associations, rather, they established themselves as a primordial force, reminiscent of that from which the Phoenix rose. Burri’s fre, as such, emanates the mythological power of self-incarnation.
Alberto Burri, New York, June 1955. © Photo by Arnold Newman Properties / Getty Images.
‘For a long time I have wanted to explore how fre consumes, to understand the nature of combustion to form a perfect unity.’ Alberto Burri
A primarily formal endeavour, Burri’s Combustioni have nonetheless been referred to as a sublimation of the artist’s frsthand experiences of torment and devastation. Emulating a gesture of alleviation or reparation, Burri’s works denote skills the artist learned as a medic during the war; John Yau interpreted them as a concrete attempt to salvage or claim the medium of painting itself: ‘If Titian transformed oil paint into robust fesh, and Georges Seurat turned it into particles of light, World War II turned painting into a permanently torn, scarred and seared body. It is painting’s permanently damaged body that Burri stitched together as well as burned, sewed, cut, hammered, and glued. For him, destruction and creation were inseparable’ (John Yau, ‘Alberto Burri’s Challenge’ Hyperallergic, 25 October 2015, online). Setting art ablaze is a practice which developed, in conceptual terms, in the 1960s. Only a few years shy of Burri’s Combustioni, Yves Klein’s Peintures de Feu were inaugurated in 1961, introducing fire as a tool to perform dramatic abstraction. Klein’s approach, bringing attention to the shifting nature of his art as it veered from merely material to somewhat numinous, is at odds with Burri’s formalist mindset. Attending to the importance of process rather than the final result, Burri uses fire as a way to bridge the uncontrollable and the inevitable: ‘Form and Space! Form and Space! The end. There is nothing else. Form and Space!’ he could be heard exclaiming (Alberto Burri, quoted in Jamey Hamilton, ‘Making Art Matter’, October, vol. 124, Postwar Italian Art, Spring 2008). The artist’s Combustioni, in this sense, represent the most complete synthesis of his creative intentions.
Yves Klein, Untitled Fire painting (F 101), burnt cardboard mounted on panel, 1961, mumok – Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien. © Sucession Yves Klein c/o DACS 2019.
While developing acute methods of destruction, Burri continued taking interest in the formal potential of industrial materials with concurrent series, namely with his Sacchi, a group of collage constructions made from burlap bags mounted on stretchers. The artist declared, ‘If I don’t have one material, I use another. It is all the same. I choose to use poor materials to prove that they could still be useful. The poorness of a medium is not a symbol: it is a device for painting’ (Alberto Burri, quoted in Marco Valsecchi, ‘Alberto Burri dal 1959 ad oggi’, Il Giorno, Milan, 5 March 1974). In bringing together industrial materials evocative of used, forelorn or worn-out objects, Burri’s stitched-up canvases embodied reality in ways that were reminiscent of Kurt Schwitters’ Merz assemblages. The artist’s relentless use of humble materials and radical techniques presaged, among other artistic turns, the later conceptualisation of Arte Povera, whose proponents radically shed light on the intersection between pure matter and the everyday. The present Combustione E 4, fundamentally fraught in appearance, refects Burri’s avant-garde radicalism as well as his necessary position within the history of postwar art. It refects some of the artist’s best ideas, coalescing the myriad of innovative methods Burri introduced to the age-old medium of painting.
Property from a Distinguished Private American Collection
26. Christopher Wool
Untitled signed, inscribed and dated ‘WOOL 2009 P595’ on the reverse; further signed, inscribed and dated ‘WOOL 2009 P595’ on the overlap silkscreen ink on linen 320.4 x 243.8 cm (126 x 96 in.) Executed in 2009. Estimate £600,000-800,000 $776,000-1,030,000 €684,000-913,000 ‡ Provenance Luhring Augustine, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2011
‘Long story short: Reincarnation. What Christopher has done with silkscreen has made the medium whole again. He has taught an old dog new tricks.’ Richard Prince, quoted in ‘Wool’, Christopher Wool, exh. cat., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 2014, p. 238.
A striking example of Christopher Wool’s large-scale abstractions, Untitled, 2009, provides exceptional insight into the artist’s visual syntax, spanning the luxurious aesthetic of Abstract Expressionism and the arresting countenance of urban vandalism. Introducing silkscreen paintings into his oeuvre in 1993, Wool manipulates, erases and layers fragments of found imagery before digitally amalgamating them into a single mass of congruent forms. A trademark of the artist’s highly focused practice, these confgurations of amorphous patterns are held in tension between construction and destruction, conjuring a fnal image that professes no pictorial resolution. Testament to the signifcance of the work within his oeuvre, another example from the present series, Untitled, 2009, was acquired by the Tate Collection, London, in 2014.
Layering amorphous white shapes against hazy, earthy washes, the present work coagulates into a nebulous bouquet that pulsates through the dynamism of its constituent forms. Presenting dense formations that become obscured with abrupt laminations, Wool introduced a new, freehand gesture that both embraces and represses the expressive potential of painting. Irreverently appropriating the aesthetic of generic, fower-themed wallpapers coating the walls of New York apartments in the 1980s, Wool balked against the toofgurative or too-expressive impulses trending among contemporary painters, instead placing the medium in dialogue with the history of the readymade. As remarked by Glenn O’Brien, ‘Wool engages action painting as his primary source and he then manipulates it, with the cool refection of a Pop artist or Dada collagist, creating art that is both intense and refective, physical and mechanical, unconscious and considered, refned in technique and redolent of street vernacular, both high and low’ (Glenn O’Brien, ‘Apocalypse and Wallpaper’, Christopher Wool, Cologne, 2012, p. 8). When he began painting in the early 1980s, Wool was perceived as an outsider. As Ann Goldstein recalled ‘At the beginning of the 1980s, painting was called into question, if not declared dead. The continued act of painting was marked as retrograde’ (Ann Goldstein, ‘How to Paint’, Christopher Wool, Cologne, 2008, n. p.). Though many artists dispensed with canvas - what they considered an arcane support - a number of young painters remained attached to their preferred medium, motivated by a shared determination to newly invigorate painting.
Jackson Pollock, Silver over Black, White, Yellow and Red, oil and enamel on paper, laid on canvas, 1948, Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Pompidou, Paris. © The Pollock-Krasner Foundation ARS, NY and DACS, London 2019. Bridgeman Images.
A chief practitioner of this movement, Wool continued to celebrate the medium’s ability to elicit multifarious modes of perception, namely through his idiosyncratic materialisation of presence and absence. ‘You take colour out, you take gesture out—and then later you can put them in. But it’s easier to defne things by what they’re not than by what they are’ (Christopher Wool, quoted in ‘Artists in Conversation I’, Birth of the Cool, Zurich, 1997, p. 34). Placing his artistic production at the juncture between painting and print-making, Wool progressively diminished the authority of his hand from being associated to his fnished products. Challenging the perceived tenets of contemporary painting, he nonetheless retained a painterly, self-referential gesture that is redolent of Jackson Pollock’s impetuous drips. As Benjamin Weissman noted ‘Mr Wool has a nostalgic soul which helps him reanimate Jackson Pollock’s drips via mad loopy sprays of black’ (Benjamin Weissman, ‘Eloquent Obstacles’, Frieze, Issue 111, November-December 2007, online). Whether employing paint, spray, enamel or printing techniques, Wool continuously investigates the limits of the painterly medium, each time adding a degree of separation between his hand and the work’s support. In doing so, he mediates on notions of authorship and hierarchy in ways that recall the stance taken by grafti artists, insisting on the public nature of their art. As with his approach to earlier silkscreen works, Wool imbeds visceral drips, glitches, and absence, aping the sensuality of Abstract Expressionism whilst intentionally eschewing any kind of superior, authoritarian tone. Each mark, whether additive or subtractive, contributes to the success of the compositional whole. As Katherine Brinson describes, ‘excruciatingly aware of the taboo status of gestural markmaking as an index of self-expression, Wool was nonetheless compelled to explore whatever space was lef within abstraction for a critical practice’ (Katherine Brinson, ‘Trouble is My Business’, Christopher Wool, exh. cat., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 2013, p. 37). Equally, the artist’s grouping of several mediums, representation of found imagery and employment of repetitive motifs, forges strong parity with masterworks by the likes of Jasper Johns. Sourcing inspiration from both art history and his own corpus, Wool’s work has become, over the course of his almost fourdecade career, increasingly self-referential. As expressed by art critic Jerry Saltz, ‘His all-or-nothing, caustic-cerebral, ambivalent-belligerent gambit is riveting and even a little thrilling’ (Jerry Saltz, ‘Hard Attack,’ The Village Voice, November 2004, online). Emblematic of his ground-breaking series of silkscreens, the present work’s arresting appearance is only heightened by its grand scale. Confronting the painterly medium to its bare essentials, it successfully epitomises the crux of Wool’s syncretic series and richly diverse oeuvre.
27. Cy Twombly
Untitled inscribed, dedicated and dated ‘for Sergio Tossi “picture in 24 colors” June 16-71’ upper centre gouache, oil pastel and graphite on paper 86.8 x 35 cm (34 1/8 x 13 3/4 in.) Executed on 16 June 1971, this work will be included in the Addendum to the Catalogue Raisonné of Cy Twombly Drawings, edited by Nicola Del Roscio. Estimate £400,000-600,000 $525,000-788,000 €457,000-685,000 ‡ Provenance Marisa del Re Gallery Inc., New York Private Collection, Japan (acquired from the above) Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1990 Exhibited Dallas, Southern Methodist University: Meadows School of the Arts, Cy Twombly: paintings and drawings, 1980 Literature Joshua Rivkin, Chalk: The Art and Erasure of Cy Twombly, 2018, p. 437 (titled, Picture in 24 Colors to Sergio Tossi)
Exemplifying Cy Twombly’s unique draughtsmanship, Untitled belongs to an idiosyncratic series of works on paper that the artist created around 1971, numbering coloured blocks and scrawls across muted surfaces. Correlating free-foating forms with signs and language, the present work deploys 24 coloured pigments along an elongated folded paper support, taking on the appearance of a sporadically assembled colourchart. Executed in gouache, oil pastel and graphite, Untitled demonstrates Twombly’s def exploration of media, alternating precise lines, smudged forms and energetic scribbles. Seemingly dedicated to Twombly’s publisher of prints Sergio Tosi, the work’s upper portion displays a preface of sorts, reading ‘For Sergio Tossi, Picture in 24 colors, June 16 1971’. Building on Twombly’s highly expressive practice, Untitled displays an array of marks and colourful hues that together build an unclear system of calculation. Challenging perceived distinctions between painting and drawing, and mapping progressions between text and image, the present work embodies Twombly’s belief that the line ‘does not illustrate’, but rather ‘is the sensation of its own realisation’ (Cy Twombly, quoted in ‘Signs’, L’Esperienza moderna, no. 2, August/September 1957, pp. 32–33). Transcending mere designation, Twombly’s mark-making holds the pulsating energy of the artist’s hand; as Roland Barthes observed, it is imbued ‘with the same non-fgurative, non-semantic gesture, a gesture that was simply rhythmical’ (Roland Barthes, ‘La sociologie de l’art et sa vocation interdisciplinaire’, Coloquio/Artes, Lisbon, 1974, pp. 18-19). It has been noted that Twombly’s greatest infuence was perhaps his experience as a cryptologist in the US army in the early 1950s. There, he learned mysterious and perfunctory techniques of secure communication, including a method of repetition that doubtlessly informed his artistic language of codes and cyphers. As such, Twombly’s unique practice of ‘expressive immediacy’ fashioned an oeuvre that combines geometric shapes, expressive marks and the didacticism of architectural sketches. While developing a grafti-like aesthetic infuenced by Abstract Expressionist automatism, having studied under Franz Kline and Robert Motherwell at Black Mountain College between 1951 and 1952, the artist
prominently challenged the orthodoxy of the New York School and developed a highly personal pictorial language that found its purest expression during his time in Rome. Spanning two columns of numbers arranged in ascending order, the 24 colours within the present work denote a linearity that betrays Twombly’s ability to exploit methods of repetition, in ways that successfully convey a sense of movement. His ‘fascination for the forms of lateral speed’ and ‘language of fow’ is reminiscent of the dynamic imagery pervading 1950s Futurism (Kirk Varnedoe, Cy Twombly: A Retrospective, exh. cat., Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1994, p. 41). Yet, unlike the Futurists from this period, Twombly ‘responded more intuitively…neither geometry nor straight edges ever dominate the variations of the hand as it moves, from tremulous slowness to headline impulse to casual meander. Fluctuating individual energies invariably take precedence over rigorously systematic ideas’ (Kirk Varnedoe, Cy Twombly: A Retrospective, exh. cat., Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1994, p. 41). Equally, Twombly’s Untitled is evocative of works that explore the idea of numbering; a theme particularly popular among 1960s Minimalists, for whom calculation and the notion of the grid satisfed a desire to celebrate organic formalism in art. In a more conceptual vein, Mario Merz’s installations of numbered neons equally evoke the idea of an unknowable formula, integrated within the artist’s visual language. Like Merz’s sequenced works, Untitled professes its maker’s intimate lexicon, outstaged by and mythologised through the iconic form with which it is achieved. Twombly’s command of pictorial nuance, balancing expressiveness and rigour, summons an incomparable gesture that Pierre Restany aptly synthesised in 1987: ‘The miracle of Twombly is precisely this manner of writing, of disfguring symbols, alphabets and numbers; and of expressing nothing but himself, with a claim of absolute totality, when he accomplishes this revolution of the sign’ (Pierre Restany, quoted in Harald Szeemann, Cy Twombly: Paintings, Works on Paper, Sculpture, exh. cat., Kunsthaus Zürich, 1987, p. 25).
right Cy Twombly, Photograph: David Lees. © Cy Twombly Foundation. The LIFE Images Collection/Getty Images
left Mario Merz, Untitled (A Real Sum is a Sum of People) (detail), gelatin silver prints, neon tubing, transformer, and wire, 1972, Museum of Modern Art, New York. © Fondazione Merz (Turin, Italy) / SIAE / DACS, London 2019. Image: Scala, Florence.
28. George Condo
The Monk at the Brothel signed and dated ‘Condo 07’ upper lef acrylic and charcoal on canvas 116.8 x 134.6 cm (46 x 53 in.) Executed in 2007. Estimate £400,000-600,000 $522,000-783,000 €456,000-685,000 ‡ Provenance Galerie Andrea Caratsch, Zurich Private Collection Phillips, New York, 7 March 2013, lot 22 Acquired at the above sale by the present owner Exhibited Paris, Fondation Dina Vierny-Musée Maillol, George Condo La Civilisation perdue The Lost Civilization, 17 April - 17 August 2009, pp. 93, 160 (illustrated, p. 93)
Evincing elements both delicate and strange, rigorous and unbridled, The Monk at the Brothel, 2007, exemplifes George Condo’s captivating collection of ‘drawing paintings’, a series of works that strives to dissolve the perceived boundaries between painting and drawing. Exemplary of the artist’s ability to capture the complexity of human encounters and emotions, the canvas presents three nude women engaging in ambiguously tactile relations, each endowed with a frenetic grimace that ‘goes between a scream and a smile’ (George Condo, quoted in ‘George Condo: Interview’, Time Out, 6 February 2007, online). Following Condo’s signifcant solo exhibition held at the Wrong Gallery, Tate Modern, London, in 2006, the present work, painted one year later, epitomises the artist’s singular and iconic approach to portraiture. Afer briefy working at Andy Warhol’s Factory studio in New York, at 23 Condo emerged alongside a new generation of artists including Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring. He quickly garnered success in the early 1980s, making idiosyncratically facetious imitations of Old Master paintings. Cultivating an irreverent spirit throughout his career, the artist continuously took inspiration from a number of artistic movements and masters. He remarked: ‘The only way for me to feel the diference between every other artist and me is to use every artist to become me’ (George Condo, quoted in Stuart Jefries, ‘George Condo: “I was delirious. Nearly died”’, The Guardian, 10 February 2014, online). Boasting a dizzyingly tortuous aesthetic, The Monk at the Brothel stems from such amalgamated visual references. Drawing from an art historical tradition of fgurative
distortion, the composition is redolent of Pablo Picasso’s geometric forms and congruous angles, most strikingly deployed in his Demoiselles d’Avignon, 1907. Touching on the diferent aesthetic elements that defne his self-termed genre of ‘psychological cubism’, Condo conjures an image that marries fguration and abstraction. As such, he has been dubbed the ‘missing link’ connecting the fgurative tradition heralded by the likes of Rembrandt and Frans Hals and the abstract and expressive liberties taken by contemporaries such as John Currin and Jenny Saville. Balancing innocuous acrylic washes and unforgiving charcoal lines, The Monk at the Brothel, replicates its formal dichotomy within the scene it composes, arranging the three women’s bodies in a way that suggests both empowerment and submission. Seized by the viewer’s gaze and the presence of an anonymous onlooker behind the curtains, the three lady protagonists epitomise ‘the sense of the female form prey to the vicissitudes and arbitrary geometry of posing in a constant theme of Condo’s unedited female disasters’ (Simon Baker, Painting Reconfgured, London, 2015, pp. 198-199). Revelling in the sensual nightlife energy made famous by Édouard Manet and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, in the present work, Condo’s characters emerge from a distinct nineteenth century décor, fashioned by ornate, theatrical curtains framing each side of the canvas. The viewer is invited into an intimate yet entirely bare scene that straddles comedy and tragedy, investigating the boundaries of psycho-sexual drama. Animated through hectic angles and fragmented bodily contortions, The Monk at the Brothel exudes an arresting charisma, that is at once serene and frenzied.
Pablo Picasso, Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, oil on canvas, 1907, Museum of Modern Art, New York. © Succession Picasso/DACS, London 2019. Bridgeman Images.
29. Cory Arcangel
Photoshop CS: 72 by 110 inches, 300 DPI, RGB, square pixels, default gradient “Blue, Red, Yellow”, mousedown y=11050 x=3350, mouseup y=16300 x=19900 Diasec mounted c-print, in artist’s frame image 181.1 x 278 cm (71 1/4 x 109 1/ 2 in.) overall 190.2 x 286.7 cm (74 7/8 x 112 7/8 in.) Executed in 2009. Estimate £100,000-150,000 $132,000-197,000 €115,000-173,000 ‡ Provenance Team Gallery, New York Acquired from the above by the present owner
Brimming with vibrant hues of blue, red and yellow, Photoshop CS: 72 by 110 inches, 300 DPI, RGB, square pixels, default gradient “Blue, Red, Yellow” mousedown y=11050 x=3350, mouseup y=16300 x=19900, 2009, is a quintessential example of Cory Arcangel’s salient Photoshop Gradient Demonstrations. With each title disclosing the specifc x and y coordinates of pre-set colours in the graphics-editing programme Adobe Photoshop, Arcangel’s series of unique glossy c-prints examines the relationship between art history and modern technology. Utilising digitally concocted pigments and technical printing, the present work becomes an algebraic readymade that pays irreverent homage to Marcel Duchamp and the American Colour Field painters. Discovering high-speed internet connection whilst studying at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music in 1996, Cory Arcangel became fascinated with the myriad possibilities surrounding the realm of contemporary technology. Complementing his classical guitar studies with courses in music technology and coding, the artist developed an exceptional practice spanning internet-based interventions and the repurposing of digital tools like Youtube, Garageband and Photoshop. He remarked, ‘I wait for culture to swim by me, and then I snap it up’ (Cory Arcangel, quoted in Miranda Siegel, ‘The Joys of Obsolescence’, New York Magazine, 15 May 2011, online). First garnering critical acclaim in the early 2000s with tongue-in-cheek works that reworked retro game mechanisms, Arcangel has became one of the leading contemporary artists exploring the intersection between artistic creation and the digital. As noted by Christiane Paul on the occasion of the artist’s exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art, Arcangel’s works ‘ultimately do not evaluate technology itself but the human perspective on it—the ways in which we play with tools to engage the world’ (Christiane Paul, Cory Arcangel: Pro Tools, exh. brochure, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, 2011, p. 28). Layering primary colours in a way that is redolent of a colour temperature chart, the present work touches precisely upon this sense of universality and human perspective.
25. Alberto Burri
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Sale Information 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale
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Auction 7 March 2019 at 7pm Viewing 23 February – 7 March Monday – Saturday 10am – 6pm Sunday 12pm – 6pm Sale Designation When sending in written bids or making enquiries please refer to this sale as UK010119 or 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale. Absentee and Telephone Bids tel +44 20 7318 4045 fax +44 20 7318 4035 Susanna Brockman +44 20 7318 4041 Rebecca Gathercole +44 20 7901 7927 Anne Flick +44 20 7318 4089 firstname.lastname@example.org
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Front cover Lot 10, Roy Lichtenstein, Girl in Mirror, 1964 (detail) © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein / DACS 2019.
Back cover Lot 14, Martin Kippenberger, Ohne Titel (Meine Lügen sind ehrliche), 1992 (detail) © Estate of Martin Kippenberger, Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne.
The 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale team would like to thank: London Operations Team, Orlann Capazorio, Andrea Koronkiewicz, Anthony Brennan, Nathan Bendavid, Maria Vittoria Raiola, Emily Cosgrove, Francesca Carnovelli, Rui Cravo e Silva, Anne Pomphrey, Kathy Lin, Valérie Wille, Guillaume Gautrand, Brittany Jones, Samara Kaplan, Karen Garka-Prince, Caroline Porter, Rebecca Titcombe, Judith Lamb, Laurent Taevernier, Adrien Couse, Eleanor Dobbs, Frances Whorrall-Campbell, Just Stroeken, Katarina Stojanovic, Joseph Funnell and Will Paton.
18. Grayson Perry
20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale May 2019, New York Enquiries Amanda Lo Iacono firstname.lastname@example.org +1 212 940 1278
KAWS THE WALK HOME acrylic on canvas 68 1/8 x 86 1/4 in. (173 x 219.1 cm) Painted in 2012. Â© KAWS
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Important Design London, 21 March 2019 Public Viewing 16 – 21 March 2019 Monday to Saturday, 10am – 6pm Sunday, 12pm – 6pm at 30 Berkeley Square, London W1J 6EX Enquiries Madalena Horta e Costa email@example.com
Carlo Mollino Set of three side chairs, from the Casa del Sole, Cervinia circa 1953 Estimate £60,000 - 80,000
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Catalogues & Catalogue Entries Our catalogues provide information on the lots for sale at the auction and are available on our website at www.phillips. com and in hard copy. Lot details can also be viewed on the Phillips App. If you would like to purchase a hard copy catalogue for a Phillips auction, please visit our website or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any prospective buyer of photographs or prints should always request a condition report because all such property is sold unframed, unless otherwise indicated in the condition report. If a lot is sold framed, Phillips accepts no liability for the condition of the frame. If we sell any lot unframed, we will be pleased to refer the purchaser to a professional framer.
Catalogue entries may include the history of ownership of a work of art, as well as the exhibition history of the property and references to the work in art publications. While we are careful in the cataloguing process, provenance, exhibition and literature references may not be exhaustive. In some cases we may not disclose the identity of previous owners where we are not authorised to do so. Please note that all dimensions of the property set out in the catalogue entry are approximate.
Symbols Used In The Catalogue You may see the following symbols referenced in the catalogue.
Pre-auction viewings are open to the public and free of charge. The dates and times are published on our website at https://phillips.com. Our specialists are available to give advice and condition reports at viewings or by appointment. Pre-sale estimates are intended as a guide for prospective buyers. Any bid within the high and low estimate range should, in our opinion, offer a chance of success. However, many lots achieve prices below or above the pre-sale estimates. Pre-sale estimates do not include the buyer’s premium or VAT. Where ‘Estimate on Request’ appears, please contact the specialist department for further information. As estimates can be subject to revision we suggest contacting us closer to the time of the auction. Estimates in non-local currencies Although the sale is conducted in pounds sterling, the pre-sale estimates in the auction catalogues may also be printed in other currencies. These estimates are approximate and provided as a courtesy to our clients. The exchange rates used are those applying on the last practical date before printing the catalogue. The rates may have changed between the time of printing the catalogue and the auction. Condition Our catalogues include references to condition only in the descriptions of multiple works (e.g., prints). Such references, though, do not amount to a full description of condition. The absence of reference to the condition of a lot in the catalogue entry does not imply that the lot is free from faults or imperfections. Solely as a convenience to clients, Phillips may provide condition reports. In preparing such reports, our
O Guaranteed Property Lots designated with the symbol O are the subject of a minimum price guarantee. In such cases Phillips has guaranteed to the seller of the lot that regardless of the outcome of the sale the seller shall receive no less than a minimum sum. This guarantee may be provided solely by Phillips or jointly with a third party. ♦ Third Party Guarantee Where Phillips has agreed to a minimum price guarantee it assumes the financial risk of a lot failing to sell or selling for less than the minimum price guarantee. Because the sums involved can be significant Phillips may choose to share the burden of that financial risk with a third party. The third party shares the risk by committing in advance of the sale, usually by way of a written bid, to buy the lot for an agreed amount whether or not there are competing bidders for the lot. If there are competing bidders third party guarantors may also bid above any written bid. In this way the third-party guarantor assumes the risk of the bidding not reaching the amount of the minimum price guarantee. In return for underwriting or sharing this risk Phillips will usually compensate the third party. The compensation may be in the form of a fixed fee or an amount calculated by reference to the hammer price of the lot. If the thirdparty guarantor is the successful bidder Phillips will report the purchase price net of any fees paid to the third-party guarantor. ⋑ Irrevocable Bid If a party has provided Phillips with an irrevocable bid ahead of the sale at a level which ensures the Lot will sell, we designate the lot with the symbol ⋑. The irrevocable bidder may be compensated for providing the irrevocable bid and may choose to bid in excess of the irrevocable bid. Compensation payable to the irrevocable bidder may be a fixed fee, a contingent fee or a combination of both. If the irrevocable bidder is the successful bidder Phillips will report the purchase price net of any compensation paid to the irrevocable bidder.
∆ Property in which Phillips has an Ownership Interest Lots with this symbol indicate that Phillips owns the lot in whole or in part or has an economic interest in the lot equivalent to an ownership interest. No Reserve •Unless indicated by a •, all lots in this catalogue are offered subject to a reserve. A reserve is the confidential value established between Phillips and the seller and below which a lot may not be sold. The reserve for each lot is generally set at a percentage of the low estimate and will not exceed the low pre-sale estimate. ∑ Endangered Species Lots with this symbol have been identified at the time of cataloguing as containing endangered or other protected species of wildlife which may be subject to restrictions regarding export or import and which may require permits for export as well as import.
Calculating the Total Purchase Price If you are the successful bidder on a Lot, the total purchase price you pay is made up of the following elements:
VAT on Buyer’s Premium and/or Hammer Price (If applicable)
Artist’s Resale Royalty (ARR) (If applicable)
The Hammer Price: This is the final, highest bid which the auctioneer accepts by bringing down the auctioneer’s hammer. Buyer’s Premium: This is the commission Phillips charges the successful highest bidder and buyer of the lot. The Buyer’s premium is calculated on the hammer price of the lot at the following rates on a cumulative basis: • 25% on the portion of the hammer price up to and including £180,000; and • 20% on the portion of the hammer price above £180,000 up to and including £3,000,000 and • 12.5% on the portion of the hammer price above £3,000,000. Where VAT is payable on the Buyer’s premium the VAT inclusive Buyer’s Premium rates are 30%, 24% and 15 % respectively. VAT Most items we sell are sold under UK Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme rules. This means that VAT is charged at 20% on the buyer’s premium and will not be shown separately on the invoice. UK Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme lots have no VAT symbol. Where the lot has a †, ‡ or Ω symbol against it, VAT may be charged on a different basis. For full details, including how to claim VAT refunds, please see the VAT & Tax Guide in this Auction Buyer’s Guide and on our website ♠ Artist’s Resale Royalty (ARR) The laws in certain countries entitle qualifying artists or their estates to a royalty when the artist’s works are resold for a hammer price of EUR 1,000 or more. Lots subject to ARR are marked with the symbol ♠. The ARR is
calculated as a percentage of the hammer price on a cumulative basis as follows and is payable as part of the purchase price:
maximum bid, excluding the buyer’s premium and VAT, which we can execute on your behalf in the event we are unable to reach you by telephone.
Portion of the Hammer Price (in EUROS) From 0 to 50,000 From 50,000.01 to 200,000 From 200,000.01 to 350,000 From 350,000.01 to 500,000 Exceeding 500,000
Online Bidding If you cannot attend the auction in person, you may bid online on our online live bidding platform available on our website at https://phillips.com. The digital saleroom is optimized to run on Google Chrome, Firefox, Opera and Internet Explorer browsers. Clients who wish to run the platform on Safari will need to install Adobe FlashPlayer. Follow the links to ‘Auctions’ and ‘Digital Saleroom’ and then pre-register by clicking on ‘Register to Bid Live.’ The first time you register you will be required to create an account; thereafter you will only need to register for each sale. You must pre-register at least 24 hours before the start of the auction in order to be approved by our bid department. Please note that corporate firewalls may cause difficulties for online bidders.
Royalty Rate 4% 3% 1% 0.5% 0.25%
The total charge for ARR on any single lot cannot exceed Euros 12,500. To calculate the ARR, we use the pounds sterling/euro reference exchange rate quoted on the date of the auction by the European Central Bank. Example To illustrate how the purchase price is calculated, please see the below example: UK Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme lot Hammer Price: £200,000 Buyer’s Premium including VAT @20% £58,800: 25% of first £180,000 of the hammer price = £45,000 + 20% on the balance of £20,000 = £4,000 Total BP = £49,000 VAT @ 20% on the total BP of £49,000 = £9,800 B) At The Auction Bidding Bids may be executed during the auction in person, by paddle or by telephone or prior to the sale in writing by absentee bid. Proof of identity in the form of governmentissued identification will be required, as will an original signature and proof of address. We may also require that you furnish us with a bank reference. Undisclosed agreements between bidders to bid or abstain from bidding on lots are illegal. Please note that Phillips monitors its sales and bidding records to ensure that bidding is transparent and fair and will take appropriate action in the event of any suspected breach of this requirement. In Person To bid in person, you will need to register for and collect a paddle before the auction begins. New clients are encouraged to register at least 48 hours in advance of a sale to allow sufficient time for us to process your information. All lots sold will be invoiced to the name and address to which the paddle has been registered and invoices cannot be transferred to other names and addresses. Please do not misplace your paddle. In the event you lose it, inform a Phillips staff member immediately. At the end of the auction, please return your paddle to the registration desk. By Telephone If you cannot attend the auction, you may bid live on the telephone with one of our multilingual staff members. This service must be arranged at least 24 hours in advance of the sale and is available for lots whose low pre-sale estimate is at least £500. Telephone bids may be recorded. By bidding on the telephone, you consent to the recording of your conversation. We suggest that you leave a
Absentee Bids If you are unable to attend the auction and cannot participate by telephone, Phillips will be happy to execute written bids on your behalf. A bidding form can be found at the back of this catalogue. This service is free and confidential. Bids must be placed in the currency of the sale. Our staff will attempt to execute an absentee bid at the lowest possible price taking into account the reserve and other bidders. Always indicate a maximum bid, excluding the buyer’s premium and VAT. Unlimited bids will not be accepted. Any absentee bid must be received at least 24 hours in advance of the sale. In the event of identical bids, the earliest bid received will take precedence. Bidding Increments Bidding generally opens below the low estimate and advances in increments of up to 10%, subject to the auctioneer’s discretion. Absentee bids that do not conform to the increments set below may be lowered to the next bidding increment. UK£50 to UK£1,000 UK£1,000 to UK£2,000 UK£2,000 to UK£3,000 UK£3,000 to UK£5,000
by UK£50s by UK£100s by UK£200s by UK£200s, 500, 800 (e.g. UK£4,200, 4,500, 4,800) UK£5,000 to UK£10,000 by UK£500s UK£10,000 to UK£20,000 by UK£1,000s UK£20,000 to UK£30,000 by UK£2,000s UK£30,000 to UK£50,000 by UK£2,000s, 5,000, 8,000 UK£50,000 to UK£100,000 by UK£5,000s UK£100,000 to UK£200,000 by UK£10,000s above UK£200,000 at the auctioneer’s discretion The auctioneer may vary the increments during the course of the auction at his or her own discretion. Conditions Of Sale The auction is governed by the Conditions of Sale and Authorship Warranty which are available on our website. All prospective bidders should read them carefully. They may be amended by saleroom addendum or auctioneer’s announcement.
Interested Parties Announcement In situations where a person allowed to bid on a lot has a direct or indirect interest in such lot, such as the beneficiary or executor of an estate selling the lot, a joint owner of the lot or a party providing or participating in a guarantee on the lot, Phillips will make an announcement in the saleroom that interested parties may bid on the lot. Consecutive And Responsive Bidding; The auctioneer may open the bidding on any lot by placing a bid on behalf of the seller. The auctioneer may further bid on behalf of the seller up to the amount of the reserve by placing consecutive bids or bids in response to other bidders. No Reserve Lots If a lot is offered without reserve, unless there are already competing absentee bids, the auctioneer will generally open the bidding at 50% of the lot’s low pre-sale estimate. In the absence of a bid at that level, the auctioneer will proceed backwards at his or her discretion until a bid is recognized and will then advance the bidding from that amount. Absentee bids on no reserve lots will, in the absence of a higher bid, be executed at approximately 50% of the low pre-sale estimate or at the amount of the bid if it is less than 50% of the low pre-sale estimate. If there is no bid whatsoever on a no reserve lot, the auctioneer may deem such lot unsold. C) After The Auction Payment Payment is due immediately following the auction, unless other arrangements have been agreed with Phillips in writing in advance of the sale. Interest will be charged on late payment at the rate of 12% per annum. Payments must be made by the invoiced party in pounds sterling and may be sent by wire transfer directly to: Bank of Scotland, Gordon Street, Glasgow G1 3RS For the account of Phillips Auctioneers Ltd Account no. 00440780 Sort code: 80-54-01 SWIFT BIC: LOYDGB2LXXX IBAN: GB36BOFS 8054 0100 4407 80 Please reference the relevant invoice number. Alternatively, payment can be made: • For invoices of £30,000 or less by credit card. We accept American Express, Visa, MasterCard and UnionPay (UnionPay for in person transactions only). • It is our corporate policy not to make or accept single or multiple payments in cash in excess of £5,000 for all purchases in any calendar year. Title to each lot will not pass until the buyer has made full payment of the Purchase Price plus any applicable Artist Resale Royalty and all applicable taxes. Collection Once Phillips has received full and cleared payment of the total purchase price for the lot and any other amounts the buyer owes to Phillips, lots will be released for collection. To collect paid for lots buyers (or their authorised representatives) must provide proof of identity.
Important Notices Authorised Representatives should also bring a copy of a letter signed by the buyer authorising them to collect. Smaller items may be collected from our London gallery on the day of the auction. Please check with our staff when making payment. After the auction, lots will be transferred to offsite fine art storage facilities. The buyer information pack you will receive after the auction will confirm details of the storage facility where your lot is held for collection. Please contact us to make arrangements for collection Storage Charges Lots will be held for collection from our offsite storage facilities for thirty (30) days after the auction free of charge. Storage charges will apply after this 30-day period for any lots which have not been collected. Details of the applicable storage charges will be confirmed to you in the buyer information pack you will receive after the auction. Loss or Damage Buyers are reminded that Phillips accepts liability for loss or damage to lots for a maximum of seven (7) days following the auction. Transport and Shipping We will coordinate with shipping agents instructed by you in order to facilitate the packing, handling and shipping of property purchased at Phillips. Please refer to Paragraph 7 of the Conditions of Sale for more information. As a free service for buyers, Phillips will wrap purchased lots which are for hand carry only. We do not provide packing, handling or shipping services directly. Export and Import Licenses Before bidding for any property, prospective bidders are advised to make independent enquiries as to whether a licence is required to export the property from the United Kingdom or to import it into another country. It is the buyer’s sole responsibility to comply with all import and export laws and to obtain any necessary licences or permits. The denial of any required licence or permit or any delay in obtaining such documentation will not justify the cancellation of the sale or any delay in making full payment for the lot. Endangered Species Items made of or incorporating plant or animal material, such as coral, crocodile, ivory, whalebone, Brazilian rosewood, rhinoceros horn or tortoiseshell, irrespective of age, percentage or value, may require a licence or certificate prior to exportation and additional licences or certificates upon importation to the US or to any country within or outside the European Union (EU). Please note that the ability to obtain an export licence or certificate does not ensure the ability to obtain an import licence or certificate in another country, and vice versa. We suggest that prospective bidders check with their own government regarding wildlife import requirements prior to placing a bid. It is the buyer’s sole responsibility to obtain any necessary export or import licences or certificates as well as any other required documentation. Please note that the US prohibits the importation of any item containing African elephant ivory. Asian elephant ivory may be
Identification of Business or Trade Buyers As of January 2010, Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (“HMRC”) has made it an official requirement for auction houses to hold evidence of a buyer’s business status, due to the revised VAT rules regarding buyer’s premium for lots with symbols for businesses outside the UK. • Where the buyer is a non-EU business, Phillips requires evidence of the business status by means of the company identification, Certificate of Incorporation, Articles of Association or government-issued documents showing that the company exists. • Where the buyer is an EU VAT registered business, Phillips requires the business’s VAT registration number. These details can be scanned and emailed to us, or alternatively they can be faxed or mailed. If these requirements are not met, we will be unable to cancel/ refund any applicable VAT. Electrical and Mechanical Lots All lots with electrical and/or mechanical features are sold on the basis of their decorative value only and should not be assumed to be operative. It is essential that, prior to any intended use, the electrical system is verified and approved by a qualified electrician.
VAT & Tax Guide VAT Depending on the status of the lot, and your status as a buyer, VAT may be charged on the hammer price, the buyer’s premium or both. UK Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme Most items we sell are second-hand goods, so we sell them under UK Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme rules. Lots falling into this category have no VAT symbol and are treated as follows: No symbol
UK Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme sale
20% VAT charged on the buyer’s premium. (The invoiced buyer’s premium will include the VAT).
Special VAT Treatment If the Lot has one of the below symbols, the VAT treatment will be as follows: VAT Symbol
Standard UK VAT rules
20% VAT charged on both the hammer price and buyer’s premium
Imported lot under Temporary Admission (Low rate)
5% import VAT on the hammer price and 20% VAT on the buyer’s premium
Imported lot under Temporary Admission (High rate)
20% import VAT on the hammer price and 20% VAT on the buyer’s premium
Lots sold outside the Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme If the buyer is a relevant business person in the EU (nonUK) or is a relevant business person in a non-EU country then no VAT will be charged on the buyer’s premium. This is subject to Phillips receiving evidence of the buyer’s VAT registration number in the relevant Member State (non-UK) or the buyer’s business status in a non-EU country such as the buyer’s Tax Registration Certificate. Should this evidence not be provided VAT will be charged on the buyer’s premium. Exports from the European Union The following types of VAT may be cancelled or refunded by Phillips on exports made within three months of the sale date if strict conditions are met: • The amount in lieu of VAT charged on the buyer’s premium for property sold under the Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme (i.e., without a VAT symbol). • The VAT on the hammer price for property sold under normal VAT rules (i.e., with a † symbol). The following type of VAT may be cancelled or refunded by Phillips on exports made within 30 days of the payment date if strict conditions are met: • The import VAT charged on the hammer price and an amount in lieu of VAT on the buyer’s premium for property sold under temporary admission (i.e., with a ‡ or a Ω symbol) under the Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme. In each of the above examples, where the appropriate conditions are satisfied, no VAT will be charged if, at or
before the time of invoicing, the buyer instructs Phillips to export the property from the EU. This will require acceptance of an export quotation provided by Phillips. If such instruction is received after payment, a refund of the VAT amount will be made. Where the buyer carries purchases from the EU personally or uses the services of a third party, Phillips will charge the VAT amount due as a deposit and refund it if the lot has been exported within the timelines specified below and either of the following conditions are met: • For lots sold under the Auctioneer’s Margin Scheme or the normal VAT rules, Phillips is provided with appropriate original documentary proof of export from the EU within three months of the date of sale. Buyers carrying their own property must obtain hand-carry papers from the Shipping Department to facilitate this process. • For lots sold under temporary admission, Phillips is provided with the original correct paperwork duly completed and stamped by HMRC which shows the property has been exported from the EU via the UK within 30 days of the payment date. It is essential for shippers acting on behalf of buyers to collect copies of original import papers from our Shipping Department. HMRC insist that the correct customs procedures are followed and Phillips will not be able to issue any refunds where the export documents do not exactly comply with governmental regulations. Property subject to temporary admission must be transferred to another customs procedure immediately if any restoration or repair work is to be carried out. Buyers carrying their own property must obtain hand-carry papers from the Shipping Department, for which a charge of £20 (plus any applicable VAT) will be made. The VAT refund will be processed once the appropriate paperwork has been returned to Phillips. Phillips is not able to cancel or refund any VAT charged on sales made to UK or EU private residents unless the lot is subject to temporary admission and the property is exported from the EU within 30 days of the payment date. We can only process VAT refunds where the VAT to be refunded is £50 or more per shipment. There will be a processing fee of £20 (plus any applicable VAT). Buyers intending to export, repair, restore or alter lots under temporary admission should notify the Shipping Department before collection. Failure to do so may result in the import VAT becoming payable immediately and Phillips being unable to refund the VAT charged on deposit. VAT Refunds from HM Revenue & Customs Where VAT charged cannot be cancelled or refunded by Phillips, it may be possible to seek repayment from HMRC . Repayments in this manner are limited to businesses located outside the UK and may be considered for example for Import VAT charged on the hammer price for lots sold under temporary admission. If you are located in an EU member state other than the UK you will need to apply for a refund of UK VAT directly to your local tax authority. This is done via submission of an electronically based claim form which should be accessed through the website of your local tax authority. As a result,
your form may include VAT incurred in a number of member states. Time limits for claiming VAT refunds • If you are located in an EU member state other than the UK: Any claim must be made on a calendar year basis and submitted no later than 30 September in the following calendar year (e.g., for VAT incurred in the year 1 January to 31 December 2019 you should make a claim to your local tax authority no later than 30 September 2020). Once you have submitted the electronic form to your local tax authority it is their responsibility to ensure that payment is obtained from the relevant member states. This should be completed within four months. If this time limit is not adhered to you may receive interest on the unpaid amounts. • If you are located outside the EU you should apply for a refund of UK VAT directly to HMRC. Claim forms are available from the HMRC website. https://www.gov.uk. You should submit claims for VAT to HMRC no later than six months from the end of the 12-month period ending 30 June (e.g., claims for the period 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2020 should be made no later than 31 December 2020). Please note that refunds of VAT will only be made where VAT has been incurred for a business purpose. Any VAT incurred on articles bought for personal use will not be refunded. Sales and Use Taxes Buyers from outside the UK should note that local sales taxes or use taxes may become payable upon import of lots following purchase. Buyers should consult their own tax advisors.
Conditions of Sale The Conditions of Sale and Authorship Warranty set out below govern the relationship between bidders and buyers, on the one hand, and Phillips and sellers, on the other hand. All prospective buyers should read these Conditions of Sale, the UK Auction Buyer’s Guide, the Important Notices, VAT & Tax Guide and the Authorship Warranty carefully before bidding. 1 Introduction Each lot in this catalogue is offered for sale and sold subject to: (a) the Conditions of Sale and Authorship Warranty; (b) additional notices and terms printed in other places in this catalogue, including the Guide for Prospective Buyers and (c) supplements to this catalogue or other written material posted by Phillips in the saleroom, in each case as amended by any addendum or announcement by the auctioneer prior to the auction. By bidding at the auction, whether in person, through an agent, by written bid, by telephone bid or other means, bidders and buyers agree to be bound by these Conditions of Sale, as so changed or supplemented, and Authorship Warranty. These Conditions of Sale, as so changed or supplemented, and Authorship Warranty contain all the terms on which Phillips and the seller contract with the buyer. 2 Phillips as Agent Phillips acts as an agent for the seller, unless otherwise indicated in this catalogue or at the time of auction. On occasion, Phillips may own a lot directly, in which case we will act in a principal capacity as a consignor, or a company affiliated with Phillips may own a lot, in which case we will act as agent for that company, or Phillips or an affiliated company may have a legal, beneficial or financial interest in a lot as a secured creditor or otherwise. 3 Catalogue Descriptions and Condition of Property Lots are sold subject to the Authorship Warranty, as described in the catalogue (unless such description is changed or supplemented, as provided in Paragraph 1 above) and in the condition that they are in at the time of the sale on the following basis. (a) The knowledge of Phillips in relation to each lot is partially dependent on information provided to us by the seller and Phillips is not able to and does not carry out exhaustive due diligence on each lot. Prospective buyers acknowledge this fact and accept responsibility for carrying out inspections and investigations to satisfy themselves as to the lots in which they may be interested. Notwithstanding the foregoing, we shall exercise such reasonable care when making express statements in catalogue descriptions or condition reports as is consistent with our role as auctioneer of lots in this sale and in light of (i) the information provided to us by the seller; (ii) scholarship and technical knowledge and (iii) the generally accepted opinions of relevant experts, in each case at the time any such express statement is made. (b) Each lot offered for sale at Phillips is available for inspection by prospective buyers prior to the auction. Phillips accepts bids on lots on the basis that bidders (and independent experts on their behalf, to the extent appropriate given the nature and value of the lot and the bidder’s own expertise) have fully inspected the lot prior to
bidding and have satisfied themselves as to both the condition of the lot and the accuracy of its description. (c) Prospective buyers acknowledge that many lots are of an age and type which means that they are not in perfect condition. As a courtesy to clients, Phillips may prepare and provide condition reports to assist prospective buyers when they are inspecting lots. Catalogue descriptions and condition reports may make reference to particular imperfections of a lot, but bidders should note that lots may have other faults not expressly referred to in the catalogue or condition report. All dimensions are approximate. Illustrations are for identification purposes only and cannot be used as precise indications of size or to convey full information as to the actual condition of lots. (d) Information provided to prospective buyers in respect of any lot, including any pre-sale estimate, whether written or oral, and information in any catalogue, condition or other report, commentary or valuation, is not a representation of fact but rather a statement of opinion held by Phillips. Any pre-sale estimate may not be relied on as a prediction of the selling price or value of the lot and may be revised from time to time by Phillips at our absolute discretion. Neither Phillips nor any of our affiliated companies shall be liable for any difference between the pre-sale estimates for any lot and the actual price achieved at auction or upon resale. 4 Bidding at Auction (a) Phillips has absolute discretion to refuse admission to the auction or participation in the sale. All bidders must register for a paddle prior to bidding, supplying such information and references as required by Phillips.
(b) As a convenience to bidders who cannot attend the auction in person, Phillips may, if so instructed by the bidder, execute written absentee bids on a bidder’s behalf. Absentee bidders are required to submit bids on the Absentee Bid Form, a copy of which is printed in this catalogue or otherwise available from Phillips. Bids must be placed in the currency of the sale. The bidder must clearly indicate the maximum amount he or she intends to bid, excluding the buyer’s premium and value added tax (VAT). The auctioneer will not accept an instruction to execute an absentee bid which does not indicate such maximum bid. Our staff will attempt to execute an absentee bid at the lowest possible price taking into account the reserve and other bidders. Any absentee bid must be received at least 24 hours in advance of the sale. In the event of identical bids, the earliest bid received will take precedence. (c) Telephone bidders are required to submit bids on the Telephone Bid Form, a copy of which is printed in this catalogue or otherwise available from Phillips. Telephone bidding is available for lots whose low pre-sale estimate is at least £500. Phillips reserves the right to require written confirmation of a successful bid from a telephone bidder by fax or otherwise immediately after such bid is accepted by the auctioneer. Telephone bids may be recorded and, by bidding on the telephone, a bidder consents to the recording of the conversation.
(d) Bidders may participate in an auction by bidding online through Phillips’s online live bidding platform available on our website at www.phillips.com. To bid online, bidders
must register online at least 24 hours before the start of the auction. Online bidding is subject to approval by Phillips’s bid department in our sole discretion. As noted in Paragraph 3 above, Phillips encourages online bidders to inspect prior to the auction any lot(s) on which they may bid, and condition reports are available upon request. Bidding in a live auction can progress quickly. To ensure that online bidders are not placed at a disadvantage when bidding against bidders in the room or on the telephone, the procedure for placing bids through Phillips’s online bidding platform is a one-step process. By clicking the bid button on the computer screen, a bidder submits a bid. Online bidders acknowledge and agree that bids so submitted are final and may not under any circumstances be amended or retracted. During a live auction, when bids other than online bids are placed, they will be displayed on the online bidder’s computer screen as ‘floor’ bids. ‘Floor’ bids include bids made by the auctioneer to protect the reserve. In the event that an online bid and a ‘floor’ or ‘phone’ bid are identical, the ‘floor’ bid may take precedence at the auctioneer’s discretion. The next bidding increment is shown for the convenience of online bidders in the bid button. The bidding increment available to online bidders may vary from the next bid actually taken by the auctioneer, as the auctioneer may deviate from Phillips’s standard increments at any time at his or her discretion, but an online bidder may only place a bid in a whole bidding increment. Phillips’s bidding increments are published in the Guide for Prospective Buyers. (e) When making a bid, whether in person, by absentee bid, on the telephone or online, a bidder accepts personal liability to pay the purchase price, as described more fully in Paragraph 6 (a) below, plus all other applicable charges unless it has been explicitly agreed in writing with Phillips before the commencement of the auction that the bidder is acting as agent on behalf of an identified third party acceptable to Phillips and that we will only look to the principal for such payment. (f) By participating in the auction, whether in person, by absentee bid, on the telephone or online, each prospective buyer represents and warrants that any bids placed by such person, or on such person’s behalf, are not the product of any collusive or other anti-competitive agreement and are otherwise consistent with federal and state antitrust law. (g) Arranging absentee, telephone and online bids is a free service provided by Phillips to prospective buyers. While we undertake to exercise reasonable care in undertaking such activity, we cannot accept liability for failure to execute such bids except where such failure is caused by our willful misconduct. 5 Conduct of the Auction (a) Unless otherwise indicated by the symbol •, each lot is offered subject to a reserve, which is the confidential minimum selling price agreed by Phillips with the seller. The reserve will not exceed the low pre-sale estimate at the time of the auction. (b) The auctioneer has discretion at any time to refuse any bid, withdraw any lot, re-offer a lot for sale (including after the fall of the hammer) if he or she believes there may be error or dispute and take such other action as he or she deems reasonably appropriate. Phillips shall have no
liability whatsoever for any such action taken by the auctioneer. If any dispute arises after the sale, our sale record is conclusive. The auctioneer may accept bids made by a company affiliated with Phillips provided that the bidder does not know the reserve placed on the lot. (c) The auctioneer will commence and advance the bidding at levels and in increments he or she considers appropriate. In order to protect the reserve on any lot, the auctioneer may place one or more bids on behalf of the seller up to the reserve without indicating he or she is doing so, either by placing consecutive bids or bids in response to other bidders. If a lot is offered without reserve, unless there are already competing absentee bids, the auctioneer will generally open the bidding at 50% of the lot’s low pre-sale estimate. In the absence of a bid at that level, the auctioneer will proceed backwards at his or her discretion until a bid is recognized and will then advance the bidding from that amount. Absentee bids on no reserve lots will, in the absence of a higher bid, be executed at approximately 50% of the low pre-sale estimate or at the amount of the bid if it is less than 50% of the low pre-sale estimate. If there is no bid whatsoever on a no reserve lot, the auctioneer may deem such lot unsold. (d) The sale will be conducted in pounds sterling and payment is due in pounds sterling. For the benefit of international clients, pre-sale estimates in the auction catalogue may be shown in US dollars and/or euros and, if so, will reflect approximate exchange rates. Accordingly, estimates in US dollars or euros should be treated only as a guide. If a currency converter is operated during the sale, it is done so as a courtesy to bidders, but Phillips accepts no responsibility for any errors in currency conversion calculation. (e) Subject to the auctioneer’s reasonable discretion, the highest bidder accepted by the auctioneer will be the buyer and the striking of the hammer marks the acceptance of the highest bid and the conclusion of a contract for sale between the seller and the buyer. Risk and responsibility for the lot passes to the buyer as set forth in Paragraph 7 below. (f) If a lot is not sold, the auctioneer will announce that it has been ‘passed’, ‘withdrawn’, ‘returned to owner’ or ‘bought-in’. (g) Any post-auction sale of lots offered at auction shall incorporate these Conditions of Sale and Authorship Warranty as if sold in the auction. 6 Purchase Price and Payment (a) The buyer agrees to pay us, in addition to the hammer price of the lot, the buyer’s premium, plus any applicable value added tax (VAT) and any applicable resale royalty (the ‘Purchase Price’). The buyer’s premium is 25% of the hammer price up to and including £180,000, 20% of the portion of the hammer price above £180,000 up to and including £3,000,000 and 12.5% of the portion of the hammer price above £3,000,000. Phillips reserves the right to pay from our compensation an introductory commission to one or more third parties for assisting in the sale of property offered and sold at auction.
(b) VAT is payable in accordance with applicable law. All prices, fees, charges and expenses set out in these Conditions of Sale are quoted exclusive of VAT. (c) If the Artist’s Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to the lot, the buyer agrees to pay to us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those regulations and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist’s collection agent. In circumstances where (i) we are on notice that the resale royalty is payable or (ii) we have not been able to ascertain the nationality of the artist, we will identify the lot with the symbol ♠ next to the lot number and will invoice the resale royalty to the buyer. If we subsequently determine that the nationality of the artist does not entitle him/her to the resale royalty on the lot, we will arrange a refund to the buyer of the amount of the royalty paid to us. If, after a sale in which we did not collect the resale royalty on a particular lot, we become aware that information provided to us prior to the auction concerning an artist’s nationality was incorrect and the artist is entitled to the resale royalty on the lot, the buyer shall pay the resale royalty to us upon receipt of an invoice. (d) Unless otherwise agreed, a buyer is required to pay for a purchased lot immediately following the auction regardless of any intention to obtain an export or import license or other permit for such lot. Payments must be made by the invoiced party in pounds sterling as follows: (i) Payments may be made by wire transfer to: Bank of Scotland, Gordon Street, Glasgow G1 3RS For the account of Phillips Auctioneers Ltd Account no. 00440780 Sort code: 80-54-01 SWIFT BIC: LOYDGB2LXXX IBAN: GB36BOFS 8054 0100 4407 80 Please reference the relevant invoice number. Alternatively, payment can be made: • For invoices of £30,000 or less by credit card. We accept American Express, Visa, MasterCard and UnionPay (UnionPay for in person transactions only). • It is our corporate policy not to make or accept single or multiple payments in cash in excess of £5,000 for all purchases in any calendar year. (e) Title in a purchased lot will not pass until Phillips has received the Purchase Price for that lot in cleared funds. Phillips is not obliged to release a lot to the buyer until title in the lot has passed and appropriate identification has been provided, and any earlier release does not affect the passing of title or the buyer’s unconditional obligation to pay the Purchase Price. 7 Collection of Property (a) Phillips will not release a lot to the buyer until we have received payment of its Purchase Price in full in cleared funds, the buyer has paid all outstanding amounts due to Phillips or any of our affiliated companies, including any charges payable pursuant to Paragraph 8 (a) below, and the buyer has satisfied such other terms as we in our sole discretion shall require, including completing any antimoney laundering or anti-terrorism financing checks. As soon as a buyer has satisfied all of the foregoing conditions, he or she should contact us at +44 (0) 207 318
4081 or +44 (0) 207 318 4082 to arrange for collection of purchased property. (b) The buyer must arrange for collection of a purchased lot within seven days of the date of the auction. After the auction, we will transfer all lots to our offsite fine art storage facilities and will so advise all buyers. Purchased lots are at the buyer’s risk, including the responsibility for insurance, from (i) the date of collection or (ii) seven days after the auction, whichever is the earlier. Until risk passes, Phillips will compensate the buyer for any loss or damage to a purchased lot up to a maximum of the Purchase Price paid, subject to our usual exclusions for loss or damage to property.
(c) As a courtesy to clients, Phillips will, without charge, wrap purchased lots for hand carry only. We do not provide packing, handling, insurance or shipping services. We will coordinate with shipping agents instructed by the buyer, whether or not recommended by Phillips, in order to facilitate the packing, handling, insurance and shipping of property bought at Phillips. Any such instruction is entirely at the buyer’s risk and responsibility, and we will not be liable for acts or omissions of third party packers or shippers. (d) Phillips will require presentation of government-issued identification prior to release of a lot to the buyer or the buyer’s authorized representative. 8 Failure to Collect Purchases (a) Lots will be held for collection from our offsite storage facilities for thirty (30) days after the auction free of charge. Storage charges will apply after this 30-day period for any lots which have not been collected. Details of the applicable storage charges will be confirmed to buyers in the buyer information pack they will receive after the auction. Purchased lots will not be released to the buyer until the Purchase Price and all charges have been paid in full. (b) If a purchased lot is paid for but not collected within six months of the auction, the buyer authorizes Phillips, upon notice, to arrange a resale of the item by auction or private sale, with estimates and a reserve set at Phillips’s reasonable discretion. The proceeds of such sale will be applied to pay for storage charges and any other outstanding costs and expenses owed by the buyer to Phillips or our affiliated companies and the remainder will be forfeited unless collected by the buyer within two years of the original auction. 9 Remedies for Non-Payment (a) Without prejudice to any rights the seller may have, if the buyer without prior agreement fails to make payment of the Purchase Price for a lot in cleared funds within seven days of the auction, Phillips may in our sole discretion exercise one or more of the following remedies: (i) store the lot at Phillips‘s premises or elsewhere at the buyer’s sole risk and expense; (ii) cancel the sale of the lot, retaining any partial payment of the Purchase Price as liquidated damages; (iii) reject future bids from the buyer or render such bids subject to payment of a deposit; (iv) charge interest at 12% per annum from the date payment became due until the date the Purchase Price is received in cleared funds; (v) subject to notification of the buyer, exercise a lien over any of the buyer’s property which is in
the possession of Phillips and instruct our affiliated companies to exercise a lien over any of the buyer’s property which is in their possession and, in each case, no earlier than 30 days from the date of such notice arrange the sale of such property and apply the proceeds to the amount owed to Phillips or any of our affiliated companies after the deduction from sale proceeds of our standard vendor’s commission, all sale-related expenses and any applicable taxes thereon; (vi) resell the lot by auction or private sale, with estimates and a reserve set at Phillips’s reasonable discretion, it being understood that in the event such resale is for less than the original hammer price and buyer’s premium for that lot, the buyer will remain liable for the shortfall together with all costs incurred in such resale; (vii) commence legal proceedings to recover the hammer price and buyer’s premium for that lot, together with interest and the costs of such proceedings; (viii) set off the outstanding amount remaining unpaid by the buyer against any amounts which we or any of our affiliated companies may owe the buyer in any other transactions; (ix) release the name and address of the buyer to the seller to enable the seller to commence legal proceedings to recover the amounts due and legal costs; or (x) take such other action as we deem necessary or appropriate. (b) The buyer irrevocably authorizes Phillips to exercise a lien over the buyer’s property which is in our possession upon notification by any of our affiliated companies that the buyer is in default of payment. Phillips will notify the buyer of any such lien. The buyer also irrevocably authorizes Phillips, upon notification by any of our affiliated companies that the buyer is in default of payment, to pledge the buyer’s property in our possession by actual or constructive delivery to our affiliated company as security for the payment of any outstanding amount due. Phillips will notify the buyer if the buyer’s property has been delivered to an affiliated company by way of pledge.
(c) If the buyer is in default of payment, the buyer irrevocably authorizes Phillips to instruct any of our affiliated companies in possession of the buyer’s property to deliver the property by way of pledge as the buyer’s agent to a third party instructed by Phillips to hold the property on our behalf as security for the payment of the Purchase Price and any other amount due and, no earlier than 30 days from the date of written notice to the buyer, to sell the property in such manner and for such consideration as can reasonably be obtained on a forced sale basis and to apply the proceeds to any amount owed to Phillips or any of our affiliated companies after the deduction from sale proceeds of our standard vendor’s commission, all salerelated expenses and any applicable taxes thereon. 10 Rescission by Phillips Phillips shall have the right, but not the obligation, to rescind a sale without notice to the buyer if we reasonably believe that there is a material breach of the seller’s representations and warranties or the Authorship Warranty or an adverse claim is made by a third party. Upon notice of Phillips election to rescind the sale, the buyer will promptly return the lot to Phillips, and we will then refund the Purchase Price paid to us. As described more fully in Paragraph 13 below, the refund shall constitute the sole remedy and recourse of the buyer against Phillips and the seller with respect to such rescinded sale.
(b) Except as otherwise provided in this Paragraph 13, none of Phillips, any of our affiliated companies or the seller (i) is liable for any errors or omissions, whether orally or in writing, in information provided to prospective buyers by Phillips or any of our affiliated companies or (ii) accepts responsibility to any bidder in respect of acts or omissions, whether negligent or otherwise, by Phillips or any of our affiliated companies in connection with the conduct of the auction or for any other matter relating to the sale of any lot. (c) All warranties other than the Authorship Warranty, express or implied, including any warranty of satisfactory quality and fitness for purpose, are specifically excluded by Phillips, our affiliated companies and the seller to the fullest extent permitted by law. (d) Subject to sub-paragraph (e) below, none of Phillips, any of our affiliated companies or the seller shall be liable to the buyer for any loss or damage beyond the refund of the Purchase Price referred to in sub-paragraph (a) above, whether such loss or damage is characterised as direct, indirect, special, incidental or consequential, or for the payment of interest on the Purchase Price to the fullest extent permitted by law. (e) No provision in these Conditions of Sale shall be deemed to exclude or limit the liability of Phillips or any of our affiliated companies to the buyer in respect of any fraud or fraudulent misrepresentation made by any of us or in respect of death or personal injury caused by our negligent acts or omissions. 14 Copyright The copyright in all images, illustrations and written materials produced by or for Phillips relating to a lot, including the contents of this catalogue, is and shall remain at all times the property of Phillips and, subject to
Authorship Warranty the provisions of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, such images and materials may not be used by the buyer or any other party without our prior written consent. Phillips and the seller make no representations or warranties that the buyer of a lot will acquire any copyright or other reproduction rights in it. 15 General (a) These Conditions of Sale, as changed or supplemented as provided in Paragraph 1 above, and Authorship Warranty set out the entire agreement between the parties with respect to the transactions contemplated herein and supersede all prior and contemporaneous written, oral or implied understandings, representations and agreements.
(b) Notices to Phillips shall be in writing and addressed to the department in charge of the sale, quoting the reference number specified at the beginning of the sale catalogue. Notices to clients shall be addressed to the last address notified by them in writing to Phillips. (c) These Conditions of Sale are not assignable by any buyer without our prior written consent but are binding on the buyerâ€™s successors, assigns and representatives. (d) Should any provision of these Conditions of Sale be held void, invalid or unenforceable for any reason, the remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect. No failure by any party to exercise, nor any delay in exercising, any right or remedy under these Conditions of Sale shall act as a waiver or release thereof in whole or in part. (e) No term of these Conditions of Sale shall be enforceable under the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 by anyone other than the buyer. 16 Law and Jurisdiction (a) The rights and obligations of the parties with respect to these Conditions of Sale and Authorship Warranty, the conduct of the auction and any matters related to any of the foregoing shall be governed by and interpreted in accordance with English law. (b) For the benefit of Phillips, all bidders and sellers agree that the Courts of England are to have exclusive jurisdiction to settle all disputes arising in connection with all aspects of all matters or transactions to which these Conditions of Sale and Authorship Warranty relate or apply. All parties agree that Phillips shall retain the right to bring proceedings in any court other than the Courts of England. (c) All bidders and sellers irrevocably consent to service of process or any other documents in connection with proceedings in any court by facsimile transmission, personal service, delivery by mail or in any other manner permitted by English law, the law of the place of service or the law of the jurisdiction where proceedings are instituted at the last address of the bidder or seller known to Phillips.
Phillips warrants the authorship of property in this auction catalogue described in headings in BOLD or CAPITALIZED type for a period of five years from date of sale by Phillips, subject to the exclusions and limitations set forth below. (a) Phillips gives this Authorship Warranty only to the original buyer of record (i.e., the registered successful bidder) of any lot. This Authorship Warranty does not extend to (i) subsequent owners of the property, including purchasers or recipients by way of gift from the original buyer, heirs, successors, beneficiaries and assigns; (ii) property where the description in the catalogue states that there is a conflict of opinion on the authorship of the property; (iii) property where our attribution of authorship was on the date of sale consistent with the generally accepted opinions of specialists, scholars or other experts; (iv) property whose description or dating is proved inaccurate by means of scientific methods or tests not generally accepted for use at the time of the publication of the catalogue or which were at such time deemed unreasonably expensive or impractical to use or likely in our reasonable opinion to have caused damage or loss in value to the lot or (v) property where there has been no material loss in value from the value of the lot had it been as described in the heading of the catalogue entry. (b) In any claim for breach of the Authorship Warranty, Phillips reserves the right, as a condition to rescinding any sale under this warranty, to require the buyer to provide to us at the buyerâ€™s expense the written opinions of two recognized experts approved in advance by Phillips. We shall not be bound by any expert report produced by the buyer and reserve the right to consult our own experts at our expense. If Phillips agrees to rescind a sale under the Authorship Warranty, we shall refund to the buyer the reasonable costs charged by the experts commissioned by the buyer and approved in advance by us. (c) Subject to the exclusions set forth in subparagraph (a) above, the buyer may bring a claim for breach of the Authorship Warranty provided that (i) he or she has notified Phillips in writing within three months of receiving any information which causes the buyer to question the authorship of the lot, specifying the auction in which the property was included, the lot number in the auction catalogue and the reasons why the authorship of the lot is being questioned and (ii) the buyer returns the lot to Phillips to the saleroom in which it was purchased in the same condition as at the time of its auction and is able to transfer good and marketable title in the lot free from any third party claim arising after the date of the auction. Phillips has discretion to waive any of the foregoing requirements set forth in this subparagraph (c) or subparagraph (b) above. (d) The buyer understands and agrees that the exclusive remedy for any breach of the Authorship Warranty shall be rescission of the sale and refund of the original Purchase Price paid. This remedy shall constitute the sole remedy and recourse of the buyer against Phillips, any of our affiliated companies and the seller and is in lieu of any other remedy available as a matter of law or equity. This means that none of Phillips, any of our affiliated companies or the seller shall be liable for loss or damage beyond the remedy expressly provided in this Authorship Warranty, whether such loss or damage is characterized as direct, indirect, special, incidental or consequential, or for the payment of interest on the original Purchase Price.
30 Berkeley Square, London, W1J 6EX phillips.com +44 20 7318 4010 email@example.com Please return this form by email to firstname.lastname@example.org at least 24 hours before the sale. Please read carefully the information in the right column and note that it is important that you indicate whether you are applying to bid as an individual or on behalf of a company. Please select the type of bid you wish to make with this form (please select one):
In-person Absentee Bidding Telephone Bidding
As a private individual On behalf of a company
• If you cannot attend the sale, we can execute bids confdentially on your behalf.
Sale Number First Name
VAT number (if applicable)
• For absentee bids, indicate your maximum limit for each lot, excluding the buyer’s premium and any applicable VAT. Your bid will be executed at the lowest price taking into account the reserve and other bidders. On no reserve lots, in the absence of other bids, your bid will be executed at approximately 50% of the low pre-sale estimate or at the amount specifed, if less than 50% of the low estimate.
• Phillips charges the successful bidder a commission, or buyer’s premium, on the hammer price of each lot sold. The buyer’s premium is payable by the buyer as part of the total purchase price at the following rates: 25% of the hammer price up to and including £180,000, 20% of the portion of the hammer price above £180,000 up to and including £3,000,000 and 12.5% of the portion of the hammer price above £3,000,000. • “Buy” or unlimited bids will not be accepted. Alternative bids can be placed by using the word “OR” between lot numbers.
Company (if applicable)
• Your bid must be submitted in the currency of the sale and will be rounded down to the nearest amount consistent with the auctioneer’s bidding increments.
Post Code Phone
• If we receive identical bids, the frst bid received will take precedence.
• Arranging absentee and telephone bids is a free service provided by us to prospective buyers. While we will exercise reasonable care in undertaking such activity, we cannot accept liability for errors relating to execution of your bids except in cases of wilful misconduct. Agreement to bid by telephone must be confrmed by you promptly in writing or by fax. Telephone bid lines may be recorded.
Phone number to call at the time of sale (for Phone Bidding only) 1.
Please complete the following section for telephone and absentee bids only Lot number
• Company Purchases: We require a copy of government-issued identifcation (such as the certifcate of incorporation) to verify the status of the company. This should be accompanied by an ofcial document confrming the company’s EU VAT registration number, if applicable, which we are now required by HMRC to hold. • Conditions of Sale: All bids are placed and executed, and all lots are sold and purchased, subject to the Conditions of Sale available online at phillips.com,. Please read them carefully before placing a bid. Your attention is drawn to Paragraph 4 of the Conditions of Sale.
Please indicate in what capacity you will be bidding (please select one):
• Private Purchases: Proof of identity in the form of government-issued identification will be required.
In Consecutive Order
Maximum pound sterling price* Absentee Bids Only
* Excluding Buyer’s Premium and VAT
By ticking this box, you confrm your registration/bid(s) as above and accept the Conditions of Sale of Phillips as stated in our catalogues and on our website.
26. Christopher Wool
7. David Hammons
2. Rose Wylie
27. Cy Twombly
16. Andreas Gursky
19. Damien Hirst
Index Arcangel, C. 29 Basquiat, J-M. 8, 9 Burri, A. 25 Brown, C. 20 Condo, G. 28 Doig, P. 11 Fontana, L. 23, 24 Gokita, T. 3 Grotjahn, M. 6 Gursky, A. 16 Hammons, D. 7 Hirst, D. 19 KAWS 4 Kippenberger, M. 14 Kossof, L. 21 Lichtenstein, R. 10 Magritte, R. 12 Morandi, G. 22 Perry, G. 18 Richter, G. 13 Self, T. 1 Twombly, C. 27 Weiwei, A. 17 West, F. 15 Wiley, K. 5 Wool, C. 26 Wylie, R. 2
Phillips presents the 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale on 7 March in London.