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    A $60MILLION+ TWOMBLY AT SOTHEBY’S IN NEW YORK

    Wednesday, September 16th, 2015

    Cy Twombly - Untitled, 1968 [New York City]

    Cy Twombly – Untitled, 1968 [New York City]  UPDATE: IT SOLD FOR $70.5 MILLION

    Untitled, 1968 [New York City] – a seminal example of Cy Twombly’s  ‘Blackboard’ paintings  comes up at Sotheby’s in New York on November 11.  It is expected to realise more than $60 million.  The work is from the collection of Los Angeles philanthropist Audrey Irmas and sale proceeds will benefit The Audrey Irmas Foundation for Social Justice. The foundation supports causes including Wilshire Boulevard Temple, which will receive $30 million from the sale. The funds will launch the campaign for the Temple’s new building, designed by the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) led by Rem Koolhaas, and to be named The Audrey Irmas Pavilion. The building will be OMA’s first commission from a religious institution, and the firm’s first cultural building in California.

    “It is always a pleasure to welcome spectacular works of art back to Sotheby’s” said  Anthony Grant, Sotheby’s Vice Chairman, Americas. “We last offered the painting in 1990 as part of the Saatchi Collection. The brilliance of the artist’s gestural genius is on full display as the written form dissolves into a nuanced grey background. All of us who know and care about the arts in Los Angeles have benefited from the extraordinary generosity of Audrey Irmas and her late husband Sydney, and so we are thrilled to be offering this Twombly masterpiece to benefit such a wonderful cause.”

    A SUNDAY INTERIORS AUCTION AT JAMES ADAM, DUBLIN

    Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

    The Sunday Interiors sale at James Adam in Dublin on September 20 offers everything from a portrait of Casimir Markievicz to a Victorian silver claret jug.  There are 400 lots of furniture, paintings, silver and decorative arts. Here is a small sample.  The catalogue is online.

    A VICTORIAN SILVER REPOUSSÉ CLARET JUG, London 1878 (2,000-3,000).

    A VICTORIAN SILVER REPOUSSÉ CLARET JUG, London 1878 (2,000-3,000). UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,900

    HUGH DOUGLAS HAMILTON RHA (1734-1808) Viscountess Lifford (4,000-6,000)

    HUGH DOUGLAS HAMILTON RHA (1734-1808) Viscountess Lifford (4,000-6,000)  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 3,500 AT HAMMER

    IRISH BREAKFRONT MAHOGANY BOOKCASE, c.1920 (2,000-3,000).

    IRISH BREAKFRONT MAHOGANY BOOKCASE, c.1920 (2,000-3,000).  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 2,000

    A portrait of Casimir Markievicz attributed to John Butler Yeats (1839-1922) (3,000-5,000)

    A portrait of Casimir Markievicz attributed to John Butler Yeats (1839-1922) (3,000-5,000)  UPDATE: THIS WAS WITHDRAWN

    ANDY WARHOL’S PRINTMAKING INNOVATIONS AT LONDON SALE

    Monday, September 14th, 2015

    The breadth of Andy Warhol’s work and his innovations in printmaking will be highlighted at Sotheby’s biannual prints and multiples sale in London on September 29.  The auction will feature more than 30 lots by the artist – 89 prints in total – comprising both single works and complete sets.  There are two private collections, one a private Slovakian collection, the other from the family of Hermann Wunsche, which offer insight into Warhol’s importance in Europe.   Wunsche co-ordinated the first catalogue raisonne of Warhol’s editions which was published in Germany in 1980.

    Goethe The complete portfolio, comprising four screenprints in colours, 1982 (£60,000-80,000).

    Goethe
    The complete portfolio, comprising four screenprints in colours, 1982 (£60,000-80,000).

    The Star Screenprint in a unique combination of colours, 1981, from Myths (£25,000-35,000)

    The Star
    Screenprint in a unique combination of colours, 1981, from Myths (£25,000-35,000)

    Cowboys and Indians The complete set, comprising ten screenprints in colours, 1986 (£130,000-180,000)

    Cowboys and Indians
    The complete set, comprising ten screenprints in colours, 1986 (£130,000-180,000)

    SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE AT MORGAN O’DRISCOLL’S ART SALE IN DUBLIN

    Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

    There is something to suit all tastes at Morgan O’Driscoll’s Irish and International art auction at the RDS on September 14.  The sale of 110 lots features mostly Irish art and sculpture, but some international artists are represented as well.  You do not, for example, see art by Robert Motherwell cropping up every day at auction in Ireland.  The screen print by Motherwell in this sale, from his London series, was at Marlborough Fine Art in London and then in a private collection.  The Pig Market by the Cork 19th century artist Charles Henry Cook (c1830-1906) is one rarity. It is estimated at 3,000-5,000. Born in Bandon he exhibited at the Royal Hibernian Academy in the 1860’s and ’70’s from an address at Patrick St. in Cork.  St. Patrick’s Day by Cook is in the collection of the National Library of Ireland.  The catalogue is online. Here is a small selection:

    (See post on antiquesandartireland.com for September 2, 2015).

    ALICE MAHER (B.1956)RED ARCH / ARCHWAY (1995) (1,000-1,500).

    ALICE MAHER (B.1956) – RED ARCH / ARCHWAY (1995) (1,000-1,500).  UPDATE: THIS MADE 900 AT HAMMER

    ROBERT MOTHERWELL (1915-1991) AMERICAN LONDON SERIES I: UNTITLED (GREEN) (1971) (1,000-1,500)

    ROBERT MOTHERWELL (1915-1991) AMERICAN:  LONDON SERIES I: UNTITLED (GREEN) (1971) (1,000-1,500)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,500 AT HAMMER

    Column by Edward Delaney (1,000-1,500).

    Column by Edward Delaney (1,000-1,500).  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    The Pig Market by Charles Henry Cook (3,000-5,000).

    The Pig Market by Charles Henry Cook (3,000-5,000).  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,400 AT HAMMER

    THE TAUBMAN COLLECTION AT SOTHEBY’S, NEW YORK

    Monday, September 7th, 2015
    Willem de Kooning, Untitled XXI 1976 $25/35 million

    Willem de Kooning, Untitled XXI 1976 $25/35 million

    More than 500 works spanning the period from antiquity to contemporary art from the collection of A. Alfred Taubman are to come up at Sotheby’s in New York.  They will be sold in a series of dedicated auctions beginning in the autumn.  The sales are estimated at more than $500 million, making this the most valuable private collection ever offered at auction. Represented in the broad-ranging collection are an impressive number of iconic artists including: Mark Rothko and Frank Stella; Pablo Picasso and Egon Schiele; Winslow Homer and Charles Burchfield; and Albrecht Dürer and Raphael.

    Alfred Taubman, who passed away in April at the age of 91, immersed himself in the arts throughout his life – from his early training as an architect, to critical roles as a founder of the Archives of American Art at the Smithsonian Institution, a board member of the Whitney Museum of American Art and longtime Chairman of the Arts Commission of Detroit, the entity which oversaw the Detroit Institute of Arts. A self-made man he launched The Taubman Company in 1950 with a $5,000 loan. He revolutionized the retail experience, creating many design innovations considered standard today.  In 1983 he acquired Sotheby’s. He set about changing the way Sotheby’s did business opening it up beyond the dealers who were its historic mainstays and helping to create the stunning growth of the international art market.

    Under his stewardship, sales such as The Jewels of the Duchess of Windsor (1987), The Andy Warhol Collection (1988), and the Estate of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (1996) were presented.

    In the early 2000s, an investigation into alleged price-fixing between Sotheby’s and Christie’s led to a confession by Sotheby’s ceo Diana Brooks of a price fixing scheme.  In a plea bargain arrangement prosecutors offered to keep her out of prison if she agreed to implicate Taubman. She did. Taubman was convicted in a jury trial of price fixing.  He was fined $7.5 million sent to jail for ten months.  After his release in 2003 he continued to insist on his innocence. Works from his collection will be presented at sales of Masterworks on November 4, Modern and Contemporary Art on November 5, American Art on November 18 and Old Masters on January 27, 2016.

    Thomas Gainsborough, The Blue Page c1770 $3/4 million

    Thomas Gainsborough, The Blue Page c1770 $3/4 million

    Martin Johnson Heade, The Great Florida Sunset 1887 $7/10 million

    Martin Johnson Heade, The Great Florida Sunset 1887 $7/10 million

    A $100 MILLION MODIGLIANI AT CHRISTIE’S

    Thursday, September 3rd, 2015
    Amedeo Modigliani’s Nu couché (Reclining Nude) painted in 1917-18. Courtesy Christie's Images Ltd., 2015.

    Amedeo Modigliani’s Nu couché (Reclining Nude) painted in 1917-18. Courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd., 2015.  UPDATE: IT SOLD FOR $170,405,000

    Amedeo Modigliani’s masterpiece Nu couché (Reclining Nude) – estimated to exceed $100 million – comes up at Christie’s in New York on Monday, November 9. The painting, executed in 1917-18, will be the centerpiece of a special curated evening sale of 20th century art focused on the theme of “The Artist’s Muse”. 

    It is one of a series of great female nudes made for Léopold Zboroswki that famously caused a scandal nearly a century ago when they were exhibited at Modigliani’s first and only one-man show at the Galerie Berthe Weill in Paris.  Outraged by the content of this show — which caused a crowd to form outside the gallery window where one of Modigliani’s nudes was openly on display — the police demanded the immediate closure of the exhibition.

    This is the first time this portrait has come to auction. It is poised to break the standing world auction record of $70.7 million for any work by Modigliani, one of the greatest artists of the 20th century.

    EPIC BATTLE OF WATERLOO CARTOON BY DANIEL MACLISE AT RA

    Thursday, September 3rd, 2015
    A magnificently conserved drawing of the Battle of Waterloo by celebrated Cork artist Daniel Maclise (1809-1870) has just gone on display at the Royal Academy in London. The critically acclaimed cartoon – The Meeting of Wellington and Blücher after the Battle of Waterloo – is over 13 metres wide and 3 metres high. It is on display for the first time since 1972 to mark the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.
    Tim Marlow, Director of Artistic Programmes at the Royal Academy of Arts said, ‘Epic doesn’t begin to describe either Daniel Maclise’s original drawings or the restoration project that The Waterloo Cartoon has just undergone. Only by seeing it will anyone fully understand its power, impact and importance’.
    The term cartoon – from the Italian ‘cartone’ – means a large sheet of paper, usually a full-size preparatory drawingThis one served for a famous painting in the Royal Gallery of the House of Lords. Conservation of one of the largest and most detailed cartoons to survive in the UK was carried out at the Royal Academy thanks to a grant from Arts Council, England.
    It took the artist over a year to complete in 1858-59.  The battle was then within living memory and he carried out extensive research. Queen Victoria and Prince Albert even became involved, using their contacts in Germany to gather information from Prussian officers who were present on the day. Maclise’s image is remarkable for its lack of triumphalism, instead highlighting the stoicism of Wellington and Blücher when faced with human suffering and the tragedy of war.
    Daniel Maclise: The Waterloo Cartoon is at The Royal Academy until January 3, 2016.

    Daniel Maclise, R.A.  Cartoon for ‘The Meeting of Wellington and Blücher After the Battle of Waterloo’  1858-1859 © Royal Academy of Arts, London; Photographer: Prudence Cuming Associates Limited

    Daniel Maclise, R.A.
    Cartoon for ‘The Meeting of Wellington and Blücher After the Battle of Waterloo’
    1858-1859 © Royal Academy of Arts, London; Photographer: Prudence Cuming Associates Limited

    A detail of the work.

    A detail of the work.

    A detail of the work.

    A detail of the work.

    Conservation process of The Waterloo Cartoon by Daniel Maclise, R.A. ©Benedict Johnson

    Conservation process of The Waterloo Cartoon by Daniel Maclise, R.A.
    ©Benedict Johnson

    EARLY DRAWINGS BY PAUL HENRY AT O’DRISCOLL AUCTION

    Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015

    Early drawings by Paul Henry (1876-1958) unseen in this country since the 1940’s will be a highlight at Morgan O’Driscoll’s sale of Irish and International art at the RDS on September 14. The two drawings, Boy with a Flute (1910) and Woman with Fagots (1904) were acquired directly from the artist and have been in New Zealand since the 1940’s.  Each one is estimated at 15,000-25,000.

    There is sculpture by John Behan and others,  an original screen print by Robert Motherwell and Old Time Dance by Dan O’Neill which depicts a night time scene and a couple dancing.  The sale of 110 lots will be on view at Morgan O’Driscoll’s Skibbereen offices from September 4-7  and in Dublin at the RDS Minerva Suite from September 11.

    Boy with a Flute by Paul Henry (15,000-25,000).

    Boy with a Flute by Paul Henry (15,000-25,000). UPDATE: THIS MADE 15,000 AT HAMMER

    Woman With Fagots by Paul Henry (15,000-25,000).

    Woman With Fagots by Paul Henry (15,000-25,000).  UPDATE: THIS MADE 14,000 AT HAMMER

    The Pig Market by tCharles Henry Cook (3,000-5,000).

    The Pig Market by Charles Henry Cook (3,000-5,000).  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,400 AT HAMMER

    Old Time Dance by Dan O'Neill (15,000-25,000).

    Old Time Dance by Dan O’Neill (15,000-25,000).  UPDATE: THIS MADE 9,500 AT HAMMER

    THE SIMPSONS AT SOTHEBY’S SAM SIMON SALE IN NEW YORK

    Thursday, August 20th, 2015

    Fine art and memorabilia from the personal collection of television legend Samuel “Sam” Simon (1955-2015) – co-creator of The Simpsons – will come up across a series of auctions at Sotheby’s in New York this autumn. Sam Simon’s passions extended beyond television to include a notable career as a boxing manager, as well as a lasting legacy as a champion of animal rights. To that end, full proceeds from the sale of his collection will benefit the multi-platform Sam Simon Charitable Giving Foundation, which supports both animal welfare programs and poverty alleviation and disaster relief organisations.  He was showrunner on Taxi and a writer/producer/director on countless pop culture icons of the small screen.

    Sam Simon’s creative eye manifested itself in his extensive art collection, which spans an impressive range of styles, genres and mediums. The strong figurative vein that runs throughout the group is evidenced in paintings such as Thomas Hart Benton’s T.P. and Jake, in which the artist communicates the emotional connection between a boy and his dog in beautiful detail ($1.5/2.5 million). That work held such personal significance to Simon that it is pictured in the logo for the Sam Simon Foundation.

    Thomas Hart Benton, T.P. and Jake.

    Thomas Hart Benton, T.P. and Jake.

    Auguste Rodin, Balzac en robe de dominic

    Auguste Rodin, Balzac en robe de dominic

    Circa 1990 The Simpsons Data East Pinball Machine

    Circa 1990 The Simpsons Data East Pinball Machine

    An interior shot of Sam Simon's house in Los Angeles.

    An interior shot of Sam Simon’s house in Los Angeles.

    Mel Ramos, Val Veeta

    Mel Ramos, Val Veeta

    Simon's Personal The Simpsons Jacket

    Simon’s Personal The Simpsons Jacket

     

    AN ATTIC CLEAROUT AT JAMES ADAM IN DUBLIN

    Tuesday, August 18th, 2015

    Bargain hunters will find much of interest at the Attic sale at James Adam in Dublin on August 25.  The catalogue, which is online, lists 332 lots.  This is an auction which offers lots of opportunities to someone wishing to start a collection. All will be sold without reserves and estimates are modest.  Here is a small selection:

    Michael Coleman - Blue Abstract (100-200).

    Michael Coleman – Blue Abstract (100-200).  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    A Victorian fold over card table (150-250).

    A Victorian fold over card table (150-250).  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 140 AT HAMMER.

    A Chinese cherrywood next of tables (100-150).

    A Chinese cherrywood nest of tables (100-150). UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 60 AT HAMMER.

    A 19th century gilt wood and gesso over mantle mirror (300-400).

    A 19th century gilt wood and gesso over mantle mirror (300-400).  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 320

    A George III chest of drawers (200-300).

    A George III chest of drawers (200-300).  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 350 AT HAMMER.