Petit Éponge SE 253

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  • Provenance

    Galerie Sfeir-Semler, Hamburg
    Private Collection, Germany

  • Catalogue Essay

    Best known for his blue monochromes, Yves Klein also applied his International Klein Blue, or IKB, to sponges as an extension and culmination of his exploration of space. The sponges, aerostatic objects have terrestrial surfaces that express different shadows and light. Edouard Adam, Klein’s chemical and art supplier in Montparnasse provided in 1957 the sponges which were sourced in Greece and Tunisia. The blue sponges differed in material and size.

    In 1959, Klein showcased his numerous sponges as a “Bas-reliefs dans une forêt d’éponges (Bas-reliefs in a sponge forest)” at the Galerie Iris Clert in Paris. Klein positioned the sponges on wire strands in an upright posture affixed to a metal or stone base or at other times attached them to a canvas, their shapes remains anthropomorphic. Each sponge presents its own texture, often resembling little craters. Contemporary to Klein, Lucio Fontana had added spatiality to his monochromes in 1952-1956 with his Pietre (stone) series which combined sculpture and painting.

    “Thanks to the sponges-living, savage material-I was able to make portraits of the readers of my monochromes who, after having seen, after having travelled in the blue of my paintings, come back totally impregnated in sensibility like the sponges.”(S. Stich, Yves Klein, Cantz, 1995).

27

Petit Éponge SE 253

c. 1961
IKB dry pigment and synthetic resin on natural sponge mounted on metal rod
19 x 9.5 x 5 cm (7 1/2 x 3 3/4 x 1 7/8 in)
The work is registered in the Yves Klein Archives under number SE 253.

Estimate
£80,000 - 100,000 ♠ †

Contemporary Art Evening

28 June 2012
London