By Carter B. Horsley
This large day auction of Contemporary Art
covers a wide gamut of styles and subject matter with 295 works
being offered. Given the high buy-in rates at this seasons
Impressionist sales, this auction fared relatively well with about
71 percent of the offering lots selling.
Lot 357, "Burst II," by Adolph Gottlieb
(1903-1974) is a 90-by-60-inch oil and acrylic on linen, shown
above, that is a good example of this artists work. It is
estimated at $200,000 to $250,000. It sold for $225,750 including
the buyers premium as do all results in this article.
Lot 320, "Henry Geldzahler," by Andy
Warhol (1928-1987) is a 40-inch square synthetic polymer and silkscreen
ink on canvas that is dated 1979 and depicts the famous art critic
and curator. It has an estimate of $40,000 to $60,000 and is very
colorful. It sold for $81,250.
Lot 275, "Anchor Stuck in Sand,"
by Edward Ruscha (b. 1937) is a 60 ¼-by 112 ¼-inch
acrylic on canvas, shown at top of this article, that is very
haunting. Dated 1990, it has an estimate of $65,000 to $85,000.
It sold for $69,750.
Neil Jenney (b. 1949) has a couple of good
works in the auction, Lots 256 and 274. The former is entitled
"Piano Pianist" and measures 58 by 76 inches and has
an estimate of $60,000 to $80,000. It was executed in 1969.
It sold for $110,000. The latter, shown above, is entitled
"Man + Thing" and measures 71 ½ by 44 ½
inches. Also dated 1969, it has an estimate of $40,000 to $60,000.
It sold for $72,625.
Lot 269 is a nice folding screen that is abstractly
painted in a dark palette, 72 by 151 inches, by Sol LeWitt (b.
1928). It has an estimate of $30,000 to $40,000. It sold for
A fun work entitled "Model For In Civil
War," by Robert Longo (b. 1953) combines a silkscreen on
aluminum with a steel outline of the United States and 18 baseball
bats. Lot 249, it is dated 1986 and is number 2 from an edition
of 3. It measures 34 by 34 by 1 ½ inches. It has an estimate
of $10,000 to $15,000. It failed to sell.
Another three-dimensional piece is Lot 299,
"Elimination of Nostalgia, ABC," a mixed media construction
by Larry Rivers (b. 1923) that is 84 by 64 ½ by 25 ¾
inches. Executed in 1967, it has an estimate of $80,000 to $120,000.
It failed to sell.
Lot 227, "The Suns Luxury,"
is a very good oil on linen, 84 by 72 inches, by Ross Bleckner
(b. 1949). It has an estimate of $35,000 to $45,000. It sold
Cindy Sherman has many works in this auction.
The most striking is Lot 176, "Untitled #122," a 40-by-30-inch
color photograph, dated 1983 and numbered 16 of an edition of
18. It has an estimate of $30,000 to $40,000.
The catalogue provides the following commentary:
"In 1983 the designer and owner of a Soho
boutique, Diane Benson, commissioned Cindy Sherman to produce
a series of works for Interview magazine. For this project, the
Diane B. photographs, designers such as Jean-Paul Gaultier and
Comme des Garcons supplied Sherman with clothes. Through artful
manipulations of cost8me, makeup, light and set, Sherman subsumes
the strong fashion component of the clothing into a greater whole,
creating decidedly unglamorous images that portray the artist
as an ungainly every-woman whose physical and emotional
awkwardness is paramount."
The lot sold for $52,500.
The catalogues cover illustration is
a detail of Lot 180, "Untitled #119," a 30-by-40-inch
color photography by Sherman of herself apparently as a chanteuse.
The 1983 work is number 16 of an edition of 18 and has an estimate
of $30,000 to $40,000. It sold for $64,000.
Another popular photographer in the market
in recent years has been Nan Goldin (b. 1953). Lot 122, "Self-Portrait
in Kimono With Brian," is much more pensive than most of
her oeuvre although it retains the same intense, saturated lighting
of most of her intimate interior pictures. Many of her other works
tend to focus on the stridency, or blatancy, or mere sexuality
of her subjects. This work is very appealing in its warmth and
interesting composition. It has an estimate of $10,000 to $15,000.
It sold for $8,400.
One of the auctions most interesting
works is Lot 114, "Years/Months/Weeks/Days/Hours/Minutes/Seconds,"
by Tony Oursler (b. 1957). The work consists of a 9 ¾-by-27
½-by-16 ¾-inch suitcase that is opened with a cloth
doll at one side on whose face is projected a video of a human
face talking. While indebted of course to Joseph Cornells
little boxes, this work is both delightful and eerie. It has an
estimate of $20,000 to $25,000. It sold for $38,125.