Kara Walker - New Now London Tuesday, December 15, 2020 | Phillips
  • "I didn't want a completely passive viewer. Art means too much to me. To be able to articulate something visually is really an important thing. I wanted to make work where the viewer wouldn't walk away; he would giggle nervously, get pulled into history, into fiction, into something totally demeaning and possibly very beautiful." —Kara Walker

    Kara Walker is best known for her candid investigation of race, gender, sexuality, and violence which is reflected in this work. The text is an ode to Up from Slavery, by Booker T. Washington in which the author describes his experience of having to rise from the position of a slave and persist in his efforts to instil understanding of hygiene and dignity to students.  

    • Provenance

      Donated by the artist

    • Artist Biography

      Kara Walker

      American • 1969

      Kara Walker sugarcoats nothing. Her masterpiece public art commission, A Subtlety, 2014, was a 35-foot high racial confrontation of artifact, mythology and American history in the form of a sphinx packed from 80-tonnes of Domino white sugar crystals. Walker's practice first caught audiences with her haunting paper cutout silhouettes retelling the injustices of slavery and the foundations of American capitalist culture.

      Walker's immense talent matched by her cunning commentary has made her one of the most important contemporary artists today, having enjoyed major exhibitions at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis and the Whitney Museum of Art, New York in addition to permanent placements within the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Art Institute Chicago. Her auction market is strong for a mid-career artist, with works reaching more than $300,000.

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Property Sold to Benefit the Yinka Shonibare Foundation


Up Frum Slubbery

signed and dated 'Kara Walker 2010' on the reverse
ink transfer on paper
46.4 x 137.8 in. (117.9 x 350 cm)
Executed in 2010.

Full Cataloguing

£20,000 - 30,000 

Sold for £18,900

Contact Specialist

Simon Tovey
Specialist, Head of New Now Sale
+44 20 7318 4084

New Now

London Auction 15 December 2020