Nicholas Africano - Editions & Works on Paper New York Monday, October 24, 2022 | Phillips

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


    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 such 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)

    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.



Lot offered with No Reserve

The Nurse; and She is Leaving

Two colored pencil drawings, on wove paper.
The Nurse 7 1/4 x 9 1/4 in. (18.4 x 23.5 cm)
She is Leaving 6 x 8 in. (15.2 x 20.3 cm)

Both signed, dated and titled in pencil and in ink on the reverse, The Nurse inscribed and dedicated 'dear David, you have been such a good friend to me...' in blue ink on the reverse, both unframed, The Nurse contained within the original envelope.

Full Cataloguing

$700 - 1,000 

Sold for $945

Contact Specialist

212 940 1220

Editions & Works on Paper

New York Auction 24 - 26 October 2022