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  • Archive for October, 2017


    Wednesday, October 25th, 2017

    Bhupen Khakhar – De-Luxe Tailors

    The home collection of British painter Howard Hodgkin sold for a combined total of £5,184,887 over a top estimate of £3.8 million at Sotheby’s in London. Bidders had the opportunity to see his work alongside objects from Italy to India that had inspired him and responded with enthusiasm.  No less than 75% of lots sold for prices above their pre-sale high estimate.  The top lot was Bhupen Khakhar’s De-Luxe Tailors which soared above estimate to fetch £1,112,750 (estimate £250,000–350,000). This was a record for the artist. The work had previously been loaned by Hodgkin to feature prominently in the recent Tate retrospective of Khakhar’s work.

    Hodgkin’s friendships were  represented in his personal collection by works of fellow artists with whom he was particularly close. He once described Patrick Caulfield as “the closest I ever came to having a painter-colleague”. Caulfield’s Sweet Bowl  made £524,750.

    (See post on for September 10, 2017)


    Monday, October 23rd, 2017

    The Irish Museum of Modern Art is  extending its inaugural Lucian Freud exhibition until next January 7.  The museum is celebrating a successful first year of IMMA Collection: Freud Project with a two-week period of free entry to coincide with the October mid-term and Halloween Bank holiday. The exhibition features 50 works by Lucian Freud (1922 – 2011) on a five-year loan from a number of private collections.  All have been on display for the past year.

    This is the first instalment of a five-year educational and cultural initiative where IMMA will present a series of different Lucian Freud related exhibitions. A new exhibition  The Ethics of Scrutiny  will open in early February. This, and subsequent exhibitions, will include works and new commissions by other modern and contemporary artists in response to Freud.


    Monday, October 23rd, 2017

    Sir Winston Churchill – The Goldfish Pool at Chartwell

    The Goldfish Pond at Chartwell, 1962, the last work to be painted by Sir Winston Churchill, comes up at Sotheby’s in London on November 21. Gifted to the  artists’ bodyguard Sgt. Edmund Murray, who served with Churchill from 1950 to his death in 1965, it has never been  exhibited.

    The work depicts the goldfish pool in the garden of Churchill and his wife Clementine’s home at Chartwell – the place most closely linked to his development as a painter. They bought the house in 1922 following an unexpected in heritance from a distant cousin.  Unlike many of the landscapes of Chartwell this painting is unusual in zooming right into the water. The work will be offered with an estimate of £50,000-80,000, as part of Sotheby’s Modern & Post-War British Art Evening Sale in London.

    UPDATE:  This sold for £347,000


    Sunday, October 22nd, 2017
    For the Love of Art, the exhibition by Frederick William Burton at the National Gallery of Ireland from October 25 to  January 14, offers an opportunity to look again at the work of this eminent Irish Victorian watercolour artist whose work remains popular today.  Burton’s Hellelil and Hildebrand, The Meeting on the Turret Stairs was voted Ireland’s favourite painting in 2012.
    This show brings together over 70 works by Burton. Born in Wicklow and educated in Dublin he eventually settled in London where he was influenced by the work of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
    The Pre-Raphaelites are represented in this show by artists like John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rosetti, Edward Burne-Jones and Ford Maddox Brown. Art by Daniel Maclise and William Mulready is also included..

    The exhibition will look at Burton’s period in Germany, where he spent seven years as a painter in the service of Maximilian II of Bavaria, and his 20 year tenure as third director of the National Gallery in London from 1874. During this time he was responsible for more than 500 acquisitions including favourites such as Leonardo da Vinci’s Virgin of the Rocks, Raphael’s Ansidei Madonna, Anthony van Dyck’s Equestrian Portrait of Charles I, Hans Holbein the Younger’s Ambassadors, Piero della Francesca’s Nativity and Botticelli’s Venus and Mars.

    (See post on for May 24, 2012)

    Frederic William Burton (1816-1900) Faust’s first sight of Marguerite 1857 Photo © National Gallery of Ireland

    Frederic William Burton (1816-1900) Dreams, c.1861
    Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund


    Saturday, October 21st, 2017

    A range of 270 affordable Irish and international artworks will come under the hammer at Whyte’s sale in Dublin at 6 pm on Monday October 23.  Estimates run from 100 to 1,000 and artists featured include Robert Ballagh, Edward Delaney, Brian Bourke, Pauline Bewick, Sean Scully, Elizabeth Rivers and Patsy Dan Rodgers.  Viewing is now underway.  The catalogue is online. Here is a small selection:

    Pauline Bewick RHA (b.1935) EOIN’S CLASS, ELLA POSING, 2003 (800-1,200)  UPDATE  THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Ruairí Rodgers (b.1956) TORY ISLAND, COUNTY DONEGAL (600-800)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 300 AT HAMMER

    Gladys Maccabe HRUA ROI FRSA (b.1918) VIEW OF A TOWN (400-600)  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Colin Middleton MBE RHA (1910-1983) LANDSCAPE, 1969 (500-700)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 480 AT HAMMER


    Saturday, October 21st, 2017

    An artwork by Bernadette Kiely.

    “I never think of the future, it comes soon enough” is the arresting title of an exhibition by Bernadette Kiely at Greyfriars Gallery in Waterford.  The artist is best known for her paintings of river and flooded landscapes based on the passage of time and the transient nature of the physical world. Bernadette Kiely’s references include environmental photography, contemporary and historical painting, maps and weather. The show launched  the Imagine Arts Festival underway in Waterford until October 29.  The festival offers a colourful international programme with some 120 performances including theatre, dance, music and art.


    Friday, October 20th, 2017

    The Astor Collection from Tillyproniethe finest collection of sporting and ornithological art to come to market in over 20 years, will come up at Christie’s as part of December Classic Week. The auction includes one of the most comprehensive selections of works by ornithological artist Archibald Thorburn, along with a younger generation of artists such as Claire Harkess, Steven Porwol, Darren Woodhead and Jonathan Sainsbury, many of whom have been hosted at the historic Tillypronie estate in Scotland. It reflects the Astor family’s thoughtful collecting interests and also presents sculpture, furniture and decorative arts.  It comes up at Christie’s London on 15 December 15 along with an online-only sale that will be open for bids from December 9 to 18.

    John James Audubon (1785-1851) – Frigate Pelican (£7,000-10,000)

    Archibald Thorburn (1860-1935) – A Frosty Dawn (£50,000-70,000)


    Thursday, October 19th, 2017

    Grande Femme II by Alberto Giacometti

    Grande Femme II by Alberto Giacometti sold for 24.9 million to become the most expensive work of art sold so far this year in France at Christie’s in Paris. It was first conceived by Giacometti in 1960 when he was asked to realise a project for the Chase Manhattan Bank’s public plaza in New York.

    Christie’s FIAC week sales opened with the second edition of the Paris Avant-Garde auction .  It brought in 38.6 million with a sale of 27 lots to international buyers from 12 countries.

    Pierre Martin-Vivier of Christie’s said: We are thrilled with the very good results achieved tonight and especially for the new high for any work of art sold in France in 2017 with Grande Femme II and it was a great honor to be entrusted with the sale of this prestigious work of art”.

    The first edition of Facile by Paul Eluard and Man Ray made 823,500 , a new auction record for any 20th century French editioned book. Through the Dusk (Homage to the square) by Josef Albers sold for 631,500, three times its pre-sale estimate. A mobile sculpture by Alexander Calder  made 1,327,500.


    Wednesday, October 18th, 2017

    Bidding on Morgan O’Driscoll’s current online sale of Irish art ends on the evening of October 23.   There are 238 lots in the sale, including sculpture.  The catalogue is online.  Here is a small selection:

    Melanie Le Brocquy HRHA (b.1919) Horse and Rider  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    John Brian Vallely (b.1941)
    Trio of Trad Musicians  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,600 AT HAMMER

    Cecil Maguire RHA RUA (b.1930) On the Beach II (1978)  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Basil Blackshaw HRHA RUA (1932-2016) Dunadry Garden  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,400 AT HAMMER


    Wednesday, October 18th, 2017

    Works by Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol and Jasper Johns.

    More than 300 lots by artists including Louise Bourgeois, Keith Haring, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Ed Ruscha, and Andy Warhol will come up at Christie’s two-day sale of  Prints and Multiples in New York  on October 23-24.  This sale includes modern works by Marc Chagall, Edward Hopper, Joan Miró, and Pablo Picasso.  There is a complete set of Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup II screenprints, 1969 (sold individually).  They are from the estate of Dr. Giuseppe Rossi, the chest and vascular surgeon credited with saving the artist’s life on June 3, 1968, after he was shot by radical feminist and playwright Valerie Solanas. The incident had a profound effect on Warhol and this group of screenprints was given to the doctor as a gesture of the artist’s immense gratitude.