La Brea B1 from La Brea

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  • Condition Report

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  • Provenance

    Yossi Milo Gallery, New York

  • Catalogue Essay

    In this photograph, Matthew Brandt reinjects new life into both an extinct species and one of the earliest 19th-century photographic techniques by cleverly combining the two. Inspired by Nicéphore Niépce’s heliograph process, Brandt places his negative – here an ancestor of the California Condor – against a sheet of aluminum covered in tar collected from La Brea Tar Pits. He then allows the work to sit in sunlight. The sun hardens the tar in proportion to the negative’s clear and opaque areas, resulting in an image rendered in hardened tar. Brandt’s ingenious connection of subject and medium itself is characteristic of his practice and is clearly evident in the present lot.

220

La Brea B1 from La Brea

2013
Unique heliograph made with tar from the La Brea Tar Pits on aluminum.
62 x 45 in. (157.5 x 114.3 cm)
Signed, titled and dated in ink on a label affixed to the reverse.

Estimate
$10,000 - 15,000 

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Sarah Krueger
Head of Department, Photographs

Vanessa Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs and Deputy Chairman, Americas

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Photographs

New York Auction 4 April 2019