John Baldessari - 20th Century to Now London Friday, June 30, 2023 | Phillips
  • “From a somewhat less than auspicious beginning, art history has turned out to be on John’s side. He initiated the use of pictures—photographs mainly, often with words in counterpoint—which has influenced generations. A life in art is full of contradictions: an art borne out of a desire to sidestep personal taste has become a universally recognized style—one that signifies a high level of taste. Collectors who, a few decades ago, might have considered ‘conceptual’ art something they probably didn’t have time for are now lining up for a chance to own a Baldessari. Despite—or perhaps because of—John’s contrarian nature, he is firmly in the canon. His art is about many things—it’s intellectual and emotional, witty, acerbic even, at times also melancholic, poignant, and self-revealing. John has often used the form of the fable in his work, and his life has that same quality: a young man from Nowheresville, with no obvious prospects, bends the course of art to his vision. Along the way, he made levity and gravitas trade places.” —David Salle

    • Provenance

      Galeria Pepe Cobo, Madrid
      Private Collection
      Marian Goodman Gallery, New York
      Private Collection
      Acquired from the above by the present owner

    • Exhibited

      Madrid, Galeria Pepe Cobo, "PRIMA FACIE (THIRD STATE)" - JOHN BALDESSARI, 15 September - 30 October 2005
      Deurle, Museum Dhont-Dhaenens, John Baldessari, 17 December - 3 December, n.p. (illustrated)

    • Literature

      Jose Marín-Medina, 'Baldessari: Palabras pintadas', El Mundo, 21 September 2005, pp. 26-27
      Javier Díaz-Guardiola, 'John Baldessari: Me siento como un escritor fracasado' ABCD las Artes y las Letras, 23 September 2005, pp. 32-34



Prima Facie (Third State): From Adorable to Winning

digital photographic print on foam PVC board and acrylic on canvas, in artist's frame, in 2 parts
overall 171.2 x 274.4 cm (67 3/8 x 108 in.)
Executed in 2005.

Full Cataloguing

£120,000 - 180,000 

Contact Specialist

Leonor de Osma
Head of Sale, 20th Century to Now
T +44 20 7901 7912
M +44 7584 086 052

20th Century to Now

London Auction 30 June 2023