Download PDF PHILLIPS de PURY & COMPANY ANNOUNCES THE HIGHLIGHTS FROM JUNE CONTEMPORARY ART AUCTIONS ON SHOW AT NEW SPACE, 45-47 BROOK STREET, CLARIDGE’S, LONDON
FEATURING WORKS BY JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT, ANDY WARHOL, CINDY SHERMAN, MARK TANSEY, URS FISCHER, BEATRIZ MILHAZES, DAMIEN HIRST, TONY CRAGG, WADE GUYTON & GLENN LIGON
EVENING AUCTION: JUNE 27, 7PM AT THE BALLROOM, CLARIDGE’S, LONDON
VIEWING: JUNE 20 - 27, 2011 Phillips de Pury & Company, Howick Place, London
, SW1P 1BB plus Highlights at Phillips de Pury & Company, 45 -47 Brook Street at Claridge’s
DAY AUCTION: JUNE 28, 2PM AT PHILLIPS de PURY & COMPANY, HOWICK PLACE, LONDON SW1P 1BB
VIEWING: JUNE 20 - 27, 2011 Phillips de Pury & Company, Howick Place, London, SW1P 1BB
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
London – Phillips de Pury & Company, is pleased to announce highlights from the upcoming June Contemporary Art Evening and Day auctions. Highlights of the Contemporary Evening sale are on show now at Phillips de Pury & Compay’s new space, 45-47 Brook Street at Claridge’s London.
The sales will feature important modern and contemporary works across multiple genres. The Contemporary Art Evening auction comprises 32 lots with a pre-sale estimate of £10,250,000/$16,400,000 to £14,820,000/ $23,712,000.The Contemporary Art Day auction comprises 269 lots with a presale estimate of £4,289,000 /$7,034,000 to £6,122,000 /$10,040,000.
“Phillips de Pury’s June Contemporary Art Evening sale affords the discerning collector the opportunity to acquire high quality works from both established and new generation artists at attractive estimates. Notable highlights include a rare Jean-Michel Basquiat ‘Self-Portrait’ diptych from 1985 at £2-3million, Mark Tansey’s ‘Library (of Babylon)’ at £1.2 – 1.8million and with it’s exquisite range of blue hues, one of the most divine Damien Hirst butterfly paintings ever to be offered at auction. We are also delighted to be able to announce that our Evening sale will take place in the Ballroom at Claridges, Mayfair, London. ” Peter Sumner, Head of Contemporary Sales, London.
“The June Contemporary Art Day Sale features some of today's most exciting contemporary art from all over the world. This season the auction will also feature curated sections of Pop art and Chinese art.” George O’Dell, Head of Day Sale, London.
Evening Sale highlights include:
Jean-Michel Basquiat, Self-Portrait
, 1985 estimated at
£2,000,000–3,000,000 $3,230,000–4,840,000 €2,290,000–3,430,000. Jean-Michel Basquiat regularly celebrated the anonymous black man in his work. There are only a handful of paintings, however, in which he explicitly depicted himself. The present lot, his 1985 self-portrait, is therefore a rare, mature autobiographical work. In it, he presents himself as a haunted, dread-locked and ghostly figure with hollow eyes. The flat and frontal depiction of the mask-like head is energized by ragged brushstrokes of dripping black pigment and smeared oil stick. Conveying tremendous fear and anger, Basquiat’s torso, which lacks any limbs, is savagely torn from the rest of his body below the chest.
In its honest, even brutal self-portrayal, this self-portrait is reminiscent of Van Gogh’s Self-Portrait with a Bandaged Ear
. It is an extraordinarily disarming portrayal of the 25-year-old African-American artist who by this point of his tragically brief career had already risen to the very top of the art world only to find himself consumed by a crippling sense of paranoia as well as a debilitating drug habit which would lead to his eventual fatal overdose.
Mark Tansey, Library (of Babylon)
, 1994, estimated at
£1,200,000–1,800,000 $1,930,000–2,900,000 €1,370,000–2,060,000. Since the late 1970s, Mark Tansey, has rehabilitated figurative painting and created a unique, post-modernist body of work, his large-scale monochromatic paintings combine a plethora of historical and contemporary references into a dramatic narrative of fictional, metaphorical and rhetorical imagery. Executed in a painstakingly detailed style, the resulting representation is as visually rich and intricate as it is deep and layered in meaning and interpretation.
Beatriz Milhazes, O Moderno
, 2002, estimated at
£650,000–750,000 $1,048,000–1,209,700 €744,120–858,600. Beatriz Milhazes’ work features in the collections of major museums of modern and contemporary art around the world and she is now recognised as one of the most internationally important artists of her generation. Milhazes was recognised as a key player in the emerging contemporary art scene of Brazil as early as 1998 when a large selection of her paintings where included in the São Paulo Biennial.
Milhazes brings together cultural traditions intrinsic to Brazil, whether from the crafts or from the fine arts while acknowledging European modernism particularly the work of Matisse. In the case of O Moderno
(2002), we find a conjunction of culturally specific references through the seemingly degraded surface, the patterns that invoke Brazilian popular traditions such as lace handicraft and internationally recognised symbols such as the ‘piece sign’ at the centre of the composition, itself surrounded by flower-like arrangements that evoke the 1960s. Here the artist cunningly manipulates our gaze through a carefully constructed arrangement of layers. One could read this layering as offering a sense of the passing of time – the centre being the most recent and the extremities the more ancient – which is emphasised by the underlying lace-like patterns, their treatment of colour and the apparent worn condition of their surface. One can conclude that this is a painting that displays key concerns in Milhazes’ practice: it reflects the medium’s own tradition by presenting to us a sense of disjointed histories that are at times interconnected while at others superimposed.
Urs Fischer, Thank You Fuck You
, 2007, estimated at
£600,000–800,000 $968,000–1,290,000 €687,000–916,000. Urs Fischer’s sculptural work takes unrelated everyday objects out of their normal contexts and merges them into one new startling object. In doing so, he opens up the concepts of material, structure, habit and transience to question. Fischer’s interest in reconfiguring objects is also expressed in the material he alludes to, often by juxtaposing opposites such as delicacy with mass, hardness with softness, the natural with the industrial, the grand with the subtle. The present lot Thank You Fuck You
is composed of a washing machine, a ladder and a pillow made out of cast aluminum. The three individual objects, that one would naturally not associate within the same context, or at least not within one object, are fully immersed in white enamel, finished with a clean, opaque, almost velvety and seamless surface, covering the object’s original materials of wood, metal, feather and fabric. By uniting these components into a single structure and disguising their natural medium, Fischer creates an unusual dynamism and energy between the parts – he is creating, as
Fischer termed it, an abstract “situation”, in which Fischer divests the objects
of their natural, implied functions, making them redundant and thereby creating a whole new object altogether, playing with the opposed qualities of light and heavy, soft and hard, organic and artificial, subtle and grand.
Damien Hirst, Confession
, 2008, estimated at
£600,000–800,000 $968,000–1,290,000 €687,000–916,000. Confession
, 2008, is a unique and eye-catching example of a Damien Hirst butterfly painting. This work was created immediately following his hugely successful exhibition Superstition
at Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills in 2007 which comprised solely of butterfly paintings of various shapes, sizes and colours. Confession
completely envelops the viewer with its glorious display of various blues, ranging from ultramarine to neon to indigo. These all come together in a complex kaleidoscopic form with dazzling intensity, with their meticulous construction conveying a religious splendour. Although no two butterflies are identical in shape, there is an overall sense of balance and symmetry across the work which is a tribute to the artist’s control over the complexity of the endeavor.
Cecily Brown, I Will Not Paint Any More Boring Leaves (2)
, 2004, estimated at
£350,000–450,000 $564,500–725,800 €400,680–515,000. Brown paints with a freedom that liberates and celebrates the art historic traditions of old master figure painting. The present work, I Will Not Paint Any More Boring Leaves (2)
(2004), was executed at an important transitional stage of Brown’s career. Her earlier works drew partly on pornography, whereas her more recent works eschew overt figuration in favour of frenetic, non-representational mark making. The exploration of form and the tension between figuration and abstraction have always been central to Brown’s work. The eroticism is more covert in I Will Not Paint Any More Boring Leaves (2)
. As in the work by artists she admires, such as Willem de Kooning and Francis Bacon, one can glimpse the occasional limb or hanging cut of meat emerging out of the abstract expressionist foray.
Cindy Sherman, Untitled Film Still #4
, 1977, estimated at
£250,000–350,000 $403,000–565,000 €286,000–400,000. Cindy Sherman’s Untitled Film Still No. 4
is an important photograph from the body of work for which she is best known and most admired. Over a three year period, Sherman would go on to create 69 film stills – black-and-white photographs of herself posing in different roles and settings reminiscent of classic film noir still images – however the initial six in which Sherman is wearing the same blonde wig remain the most sought after and pivotalphotographs of her career.
In Untitled Film Still No. 4
, Sherman presents herself elegantly dressed in a matching skirt, jacket and heels in the fashion of post-war America, leaning against what looks like a hotel room door. She is alone in an empty, dramatically lit hallway which recedes in the distance. Her eyes are shut and face drawn perhaps in desperation and contemplation as she ponders whether to knock on the door with her right hand. Beyond the mere descriptive element of the work, the viewer is invited to invent a narrative around this pivotal moment. None of these possibilities are resolved. Sherman as the artist/photographer and her own actress muse is both revealed yet hidden at the same time, named and nameless.
Tony Cragg, The Fanatics
, 2006, estimated at
£300,000–500,000 $484,000–806,000 €343,000–572,000. Tony Cragg represented Britain at the Venice Biennale in 1988 and was awarded the Turner Prize in the same year. In 2008, the artist opened Waldfrieden, the major sculptural foundation and a 30-acre outdoor sculpture park in Wuppertal, Germany. He has lived in Germany since 1977 where contemporary art played an important role in reviving post-war society. It became a place where Cragg could fully express himself artistically and was able to transform his favourite medium – sculpture. The Fanatics
is a characteristic example of Tony Cragg’s sculpture, which is deeply rooted in the British modernist sculpture tradition brought to its heights by Henry Moore. Like Moore, Cragg’s work is about form, material and the world at large. In The Fanatics
, Cragg creates a powerful visual experience through the use of highly abstract, expressive forms that are full of energy and are reminiscent of a tornado. The reflective nature of steel along with swirling shapes, that in places reveal the outlines of human faces, creates the sense of movement, explosiveness and engages the viewer with its fullness of life. The sculpture is striking with its monumentality that adds another emotional, dramatic aspect to it.
Andy Warhol, Mao
, 1972, estimated at
£300,000–500,000 $484,000–810,000 €343,000–570,000. The current lot is an important complete set of 10 colour screenprints of Mao
by Andy Warhol. The year in which these prints were made, 1972, was of worldwide importance – it was the year when President Nixon travelled to China for his controversial state visit with Chairman Mao Tse Tung in the hope of opening up relations between China and the USA. “The week that changed the world”, as President Nixon termed it, was widely covered by the media and the official state portrait of Mao could be seen everywhere, not only as part of Mao’s propaganda in China but throughout the west as well. This portrait, also reproduced in the Chairman’s Little Red Book
, became the world’s most recognizable image and a potent icon of political and cultural power.
series marked an important point in Andy Warhol’s career. His subjects changed from the glamour of celebrity to more political themes, and in doing so, the images of political leaders, for example, were endowed with a similar graphic styling as the celebrity subjects. In the Mao
series, the image of the statesman has been turned into the Chinese Communist counterpart of a popular cultural icon. While examining the concept of fame, Warhol is also looking at the powerful role of mass media and propaganda in the creation of a personality cult and the reputations of individuals.
Wade Guyton, Untitled
, 2007, estimated at
£150,000–250,000 $242,000–403,000 €172,000–286,000. The most perverse twist comes in Guyton’s paintings of the Xs,
the bulk of which originated from a scan of an earlier drawing to which he added others typed directly in Photoshop. The difference between them is almost imperceptible except that those imported and blown-up from the page reveal a tinge of yellow along the slightly serrated edges, while those appended directly on the computer have perfectly smooth contours and are printed in ‘pure’ black, not a composite approximation of it.
Ilya Kabakov, A Solemn Painting,
2005, estimated at £200,000-300,000 $323,000-484,000 €229,000-343,000. In A Solemn Painting
, Kabakov continues to challenge conventional practice by combining traditional painting, in a style that is reminiscent of French Impressionism. Through the use of flags and the red star, Kabakov makes reference to Communist Russia, in which his personal and artistic identities were formed. Throughout the artist’s work, the realism of the Socialist times remained a pervasive influence, even after his emigration from the Soviet Union in 1988. In the present work, the first version of which was made in 1994, flags act as frames making ideological the otherwise typical landscape view, a traditionally popular subject matter for Russian artists.
CONTEMPORARY ART DAY SALE
The Contemporary Art Day sale features a mixture of genres that will appeal to many collectors, including curated sections of Chinese and Pop artworks.
Tracey Emin’s I Told You Not To (Fiat 500)
, 2007 estimated at £10,000-15,000.
A fleet of four brand-new and previously unseen Fiat 500 cars could be viewed travelling around London during Frieze Art Fair in October 2007. The unique cars have been specially commissioned for Fiat, curated by Artwise (www.artwisecurators.com), and have been illustrated and signed by the internationally acclaimed British artist and Royal Academician Tracey Emin. The four ‘Collectors’ Cars’ by Emin were part of her mobile exhibition ‘Drawings in Motion’ coinciding with Frieze Art Fair. The pop-up exhibition project was conceived to preview the new car in the UK prior to its official launch in 2008 when the vehicle celebrated its 50th anniversary. Since then the Fiat 500 has won several prizes amongst others European Car of the Year in 2007 and 2008, and Design Car of the Year in 2009. The Fiat 500 was “hailed as being the must-have design object” (The Independent
, 6 October 2007). The current lot, I Told You Not To
, was the first of the four new Fiat 500 Collectors’ Cars illustrated with a unique drawing by Tracey Emin. “I really enjoyed working on the Fiat 500, which I refer to as the ‘mouse car’. It was tempting to make them even more super-cute, but instead decided to give them an edge.” (Tracey Emin)
Raymond Pettibon, Untitled (I’m a Lover, not a Fighter)
, c. 1990 estimated at
£40,000–60,000 $64,500–96,800 €45,800–68,700; Aaron Young
, 2008, Estimated at
£30,000–50,000 $48,400–80,600 €34,300–57,200; Mark Bradford, New York A.M
, 2004, estimated at
£50,000–70,000 $80,600–113,000 €57,200–80,100; Kelley Walker, Chocolate Riot; Reversed Burning Car
, 2004, estimated at
£30,000–50,000 $34,300–57,200 €48,400–80,600; Glenn Ligon, Study for Negro Sunshine #54
, 2010 estimated at
£12,000–18,000 $19,400–29,000 €13,700–20,600. ; Farhad Moshiri, 14S8
, 2004, estimated at.£40,000–60,000 $64,500–96,800 €45,800–68,700; Georg Herold, Untitled (caviar)
, 1990, estimated at
£40,000–60,000 $64,500–96,800 €45,800–68,700; Ugo Rondinone, In the Sweet Years Remaining
, 1998, estimated at
£100,000–150,000 $161,000–242,000 €114,000–172,000; Urs Fischer, Thinking about Störtebeker
, 2005, estimated at
£12,000–18,000 $19,400–29,000 €13,700–20,600; Jim Lambie, Wigwambamwamwig
, 2007, estimated at
£30,000–50,000 $48,400–80,600 €34,300–57,200.
Within the Chinese section of the sale, there are several works from the mid-1990s, a period during which art in China, faced first with the aftermath of the 1989 student movement and then with the hastening of the economic development, matured rapidly. Fang Lijun’s 1997.10.1
from 1997, estimated at £50,000-70,000 is a stunning, small-scale example of the artist’s signature so-called Cynical Realist style. The work shows a pair of meticulously painted hands emerging from, or sinking into rippling water in a blue hue, an image with which Fang encapsulates the disillusionment of China’s youth, a generation defined by the events of Tiananmen Square. It is a work typical of Fang’s in which disenchantment, anxiety and rebellion are conveyed through his illustrative style. In a similar symbolic manner, Zhang Huan’s
1994 work 12 Square Metres
(lot 161) documents his performance during which he sat on a village public toilet for two hours, naked and covered in a viscid paste of fish and honey that attracted flies. In such a way, the artist sought the certainty of his own existence by undergoing acts physical and mental pain. Likewise, Zhang Huan’s Family Tree
of 2000 (lot 165) reiterates the artist’s commitment to rebellion. Mao once stated “To rebel is justified”, and this spirit continues in a subversive form of creativity that now distinguishes many young Chinese artists.
Other highlights of this section include: Zeng Chuan Xing’s, Red Paper Bride, City at Night
, 2010, estimated at
£60,000–80,000 $96,800–129,000 €68,700–91,600; Yang Shaobin’s, Fighting No. 3
, 2001, estimated at
£35,000–45,000 $56,500–72,600 €40,100–51,500; Li Song Song’s
, Watching a Play
, 2004, estimated at
£100,000–150,000 $161,000–242,000 €114,000–172,000.
Highlights of the Pop Art section include Roy Lichtenstein’s Sweet Dreams Baby!
, 1965, estimated at £50,000-70,000; it is not only a consummate example of Pop art but also a prime composition, encompassing those elements for which Lichtenstein is famous. The momentum of the upwardly swinging fist’s contact with the male figure in the foreground is exclaimed with a bold “POW!”, while at the same moment, the proclamation of “Sweet dreams baby!” is made from just outside the pictorial frame. The action within the work, in a similar way to that of the comic book cells which inspired Lichtenstein’s works, exceeds its frame, heightening the excitement of the scene. Sweet Dreams Baby!
exemplifies the marriage of image and text, as well as accessibility and artistic mastery in Lichtenstein’s work.
Also included is Andy Warhol’s
, Portrait of Frank Stella
, 1967 estimated at £70,000-90,000,
is a silkscreened image of the American abstract painter’s face, half in shadow, on a monochrome canvas. Stella was an instrumental member of the Post-Painterly Abstraction and Colour Field movements which coincided with the Pop movement, and like Warhol, Stella emphasised that the meaning of his work could be found on the surface of each painting. This displacement of meaning from subject to surface was something Warhol strived to achieve in his own work, often explaining that in order to understand him, one had to look no further than the surface of his work.
Warhol’s influence on Keith Haring
can be seen in Mickey Mouse
(Lot 218), which is itself a direct visual reference to Warhol’s own
series based on the Walt Disney character. Although this drawing
is a deviation from his well-known pulsating cartoon characters, it
highlights Haring’s consistent use of bright colours, bold lines and
simple subjects. In 1985 Haring returned to this subject matter in
a series of portraits featuring Warhol as Mickey Mouse; the aptly
titled Andy Mouse
further confirms the impact of Warhol on the
younger artist as well as demonstrating Haring’s own interest in
popular images and their appropriation into high art..
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