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  • Provenance

    Alexander Iolas, New York
    Acquired directly from the above by the previous owner
    Private Collection

  • Exhibited

    Washington, DC, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers, May 20 – September 12, 2010. This exhibition later traveled to the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, October 23, 2010 – February 13, 2011

  • Literature

    K. Brougher, Yves Klein: With the Void, Full Powers, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden/Walker Art Center, Washington/Minneapolis, 2010, p. 150 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    With his boundless, utopian visions, Yves Klein produced an oeuvre that took the European avant-garde by storm. In the early part of his career, Klein explored a variety of colors, but by 1958 the artist’s monochrome works were almost exclusively created in the now famous rich ultramarine hue of blue. Klein came to view blue as the purest embodiment of organic abstraction. In the artist’s own words, “Blue has no dimensions, it is beyond dimensions… All colors arouse specific associative ideas, psychologically material or tangible, while blue suggests at most the sea and sky, and they, after all, are in actual, visible nature what is most abstract.” (From Yves Klein’s lecture at the Sorbonne, 1959.) Klein eventually patented the color “International Klein Blue,” the hue that would become the central component in his work.

    The profundity of Klein’s monochrome abstractions is magnified in his biomorphic sculptures, superbly demonstrated by the present lot, Untitled Coral Sculpture (SE 288), 1958. Klein saturates the coral in his signature blue, using nature’s raw form to explore the spiritual depth and immateriality of the color. By using the three-dimensional coral as his medium, Yves Klein’s Blue claims its autonomy as it is absorbed and completely inundates the coral with its vibrancy. The tentacles of the coral reach out and invite the viewer to travel through the deep sea that is Yves Klein Blue.


Untitled Coral Sculpture, (SE 288)

dry pigment and synthetic resin on natural coral
12 1/4 x 12 1/4 x 5 in. (31 x 31 x 14 cm)
Initialed and dated “Y.K. 58” on the reverse.

$650,000 - 750,000 

Contemporary Art Part I

7 November 2011
New York