Mary Heilmann - 20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale, Morning Session New York Thursday, May 19, 2022 | Phillips

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  • Property from the Collection of David B. Boyce, a figure in the 1970s art scene

     

    Mary Heilmann’s Yellow, Red + Blue Drawing, 1976, comes from the esteemed collection of David B. Boyce. Acquired from the same gallery where Boyce served as Assistant Director from 1975 to 1977, Holly Solomon, this work on paper from Heilmann’s seminal “Red, Yellow and Blue Paintings” of the 1970s is an important example from a pivotal period in the artist’s geometric painting practice.


    David Bartlett Boyce (1949–2014) was a writer, curator, art historian, and active member of the art scene in New York’s Greenwich Village in the 1970s. A close friend to many of the most important artists of the time–including Robert Mapplethorpe, Duane Michals, Claes Oldenburg and George Segal–Boyce also worked as a studio assistant for acclaimed artists such as Jasper Johns, Tom Wesselmann and Joseph Cornell. It was Boyce who introduced Mapplethorpe to the gallerist Holly Solomon, and the artist’s subsequent shows at the gallery launched the young photographer into art world stardom.i

     

    George Segal, Gay Liberation, commissioned 1979, installed 1992 (David Boyce pictured left), Image: Stefano Politi Markovina / Alamy Stock Photo
    George Segal, Gay Liberation, commissioned 1979, installed 1992 (David Boyce pictured left), Image: Stefano Politi Markovina / Alamy Stock Photo

    Boyce was a key figure in the Gay Liberation movement after the 1969 riots at the Stonewall Inn. When George Segal was commissioned to create a sculpture to commemorate the riots in 1979, the artist asked Boyce to model for him.ii Consisting of four figures in two same-sex couples, Segal’s Gay Liberation was installed outside the Stonewall Inn in 1992 as a memorial to the violence and discrimination against the LGBTQ community, as well as a celebration of the progress that the community has witnessed since 1969.

     

    Following the excitement that the Greenwich Village art scene witnessed in the 1970s, Boyce left New York City in the early 1980s. From 1996 to 1999, he returned to school at Goddard College to obtain a master's degree in Creative Writing and Gay Studies. After receiving this degree, Boyce lived in New Bedford, Massachusetts, where he worked as an art critic for the Standard Times and a curator at the New Bedford Art Museum.iii Until his passing in 2014, Boyce remained an influential voice in the art world. Today he is remembered as a symbol of the Gay Liberation movement, a patron of the arts, and a friend to many in the art world and beyond. 


    i Lasse Antonsen, “David B. Boyce, cast as one of the four figures in George Segal’s Gay Liberation Monument, dies at 65,” Artscope, January 7, 2015, online
    ii Peggi Medeiros, “Remembering David Boyce, New Bedford's link to art history,” SouthCoast TODAY, January 17, 2015, online
    iii Lasse Antonsen, “David B. Boyce, cast as one of the four figures in George Segal’s Gay Liberation Monument, dies at 65,” Artscope, January 7, 2015.

    • Condition Report

    • Description

      View our Conditions of Sale.

    • Provenance

      Holly Solomon Gallery, New York
      Acquired from the above by the present owner

Property from the Estate of David B. Boyce

115

Yellow, Red + Blue Drawing

signed and dated "Mary Heilmann 76" on the reverse
acrylic on paper
29 3/4 x 22 1/8 in. (75.6 x 56.2 cm)
Painted in 1976.

Full Cataloguing

Estimate
$25,000 - 35,000 

Place Advance Bid
Contact Specialist

Annie Dolan
Specialist, Head of Day Sale, Morning Session
+1 212 940 1288
[email protected]

20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale, Morning Session

New York Auction 19 May 2022