Auction 145C

Modern Art
Pop Art - Picasso Ceramics - Selected Works

27. June 2019 at 5:00 PM CEST


The Modern Art Auction will start in the late afternoon of 27 June with the chapter 'Picasso & Friends', followed by the 'Selected Works'. The main chapter of the auction is dedicated to Pop Art.

The 'Picasso & Friends' offer includes photographs by Picasso, prints by artists close to him, and ceramics. The most striking object among them is a large jug designed for Madoura with the title 'Visage aux yeux rieurs' in 1969. The drawing is a tribute to the title of the jug, which was executed in 300 copies (catalogue no. 493, estimated price €  26,000-32,000).

Among the 'Selected Works', a work by Maxim Cole is one of the most outstanding. It bears the name 'Arabella', dates from 1999 and was acquired at the Galerie Michael Sturm in Stuttgart. Richard Vine, the current managing editor of the magazine 'Art in America', described Max Cole's painting as follows: 'Countless vertical strokes are lined up to form lines that immediately abut or slightly overlap each other. Wide, pasty lines follow, indeed underline, the horizontal lines thus given, and occasionally the natural lines in which the hatching touches are covered by the rich stripes. The chiaroscuro is regulated as if by blinds. The basic mood is given by the grid of countless verticals, from which the horizontal adds up. The large, general light value results from the pasty lines, which basically have a tendency to darken, even if the colour is light and open. The observer might feel reminded of open scores promising impossible music, or he might see calligraphies that have moved infinitely away from the service of narration' (Catalogue No 499, estimated price € 12,000-15,000).

Among the particularly interesting objects in the chapter are two works on paper (collages) by Martin Kippenberger, which emerged from the project for the telephone card 'Roger' in 1992 (catalogue no. 502 and 503, estimated price € 10,000-15,000 each). The edition of the artist's telephone cards was a project by Jochen Unold for the FTZ, today's Telekom, with Martin Kippenberger. Originally, 20,000 of these cards were planned, but only a few were produced by Gieseke and Devriant, since the telephone card as such was suddenly obsolete due to the advent of mobile telephony. Thereupon at least 100 of these cards were handed over to a collector, who signed Martin Kippenberger. By the way, 25 of these cards went into the collection of Bärbel Grässlin.

In the post 1945 section there are also two works in white in different techniques by Herbert Zangs, which are exemplary for the artist's inclination to this non-colour. These are an 'Abstract Composition' of white dripped dots, dated 1955 by the artist, but probably made later, and a bubble painting in acrylic and tissue paper on canvas from 1978. Both works were shown to the expert Helgard Müller-Jensen in Karlsruhe for appraisal (Catalogue Nos. 516 and 517, estimated prices €  8,000-10,000 and 5,000-7,000).

A cubist painting by the Frenchman and contemporary of Pablo Picasso Jean Souverbie leads the field of Modern Classic. It was created in 1925 and has been kept in a South German private collection since the 1980s. The painter's grandson, Frédérick Souverbie, who is also an expert on his grandfather's work, identifies 'Baigneuse dans un paysage', also known as 'Nu allongé', as one of the artist's major works from his Cubist period. The painting has been exhibited several times and bears, among other things, the provenance of the small, yet epoch-making Paris gallery Vavin-Raspail, which exhibited many of Jean Souverbie's avant-garde contemporaries (cat. no. 512, estimated price € 15,000-20,000 ).

The extensive chapter 'Pop Art' brings together positions from all over the world, often as easily affordable editions for entry-level collectors. Beside the usual, often historical positions from the USA, Great Britain and also Germany such from India, China, Thailand are found. These artists, mostly not recognized in Western countries so far, stand for pop culture and their - sometimes critically interpreted - thematic world in their home countries. A German representative of Pop Art, Peter Klasen, who lives in France, created a four-part installation in mixed technique with neon. 'Love' is its title and was created in 2003 as part of a series dealing with 'Love' and 'Hate' and related content. Similar works to this one in the auction are published in Pascale Le Thorel's monograph 'Peter Klasen - Oeuvres 1959-2009' published in 2009 ( 539, estimated price € 20.000-30.000).

If you're looking for a cheerful outdoor sculpture for your summer retreat in the garden or park, you'll love the larger-than-life 'Yellow Figure' by Allan Jones. The curved, yellow steel sculpture was published by Edition Huber in 1996 ( 535, estimated price €  6,000-8,000). The shooting star of the Pop Art scene, the painter Maximilian Wiedemann, who was born in Germany and now lives in London, created a large-format mixed-technique painting. At the bottom left it is titled 'The only pain is champagne' in a smug spray technique. It was created in 2016 and belongs to the series 'Vogue', which gives a good idea of where the artist got his inspiration from. Wiedemann himself explains: 'I love to combine a street context with fashion and luxury. I've always thought that this was a powerful combination because the rawness of street art and hip hop gives something angular to the high-end fashion world and luxury market' (source: artist's website (Cat.No. 600. Estimated price €  10,000-15,000).

An exciting object with reference to Munich is the bronze 'Camera' by Eduardo Paolozzi from 1982, his early time as professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich. The small bronze was created as part of his so-called 'morphological sculptures'. The large version of the 'Camera' (in the auction the reduced version in the form of a bronze is offered) he designed for the garden at the European Patent Office in Munich. Winfried Konnertz placed it in the following context. 'In the 'Camera' geological formations and architectural elements penetrate each other. The first plaster models are reminiscent of an amphitheatre, a sacred fairground or a rock castle. This form is the result of the diagram of a cut by a camera. An etching based on this model, 'Camera', adopts the 'image' in its unchanged form and enriches it with an internal structure. (...) The forms found there are transformed into drawings and small plaster models with the help of which Paolozzi elaborates the final representation of the iron sculpture' (Konnertz, Eduardo Paolozzi, Cologne, 1984, p. 237). The bronze offered at the auction was a gift from Paolozzi to his studio collaborator. The latter in turn presented it to the current owner (Cat. No. 562, estimated price € 3,000-4,000).

The concept of our auction ‚Modern Art‘, curated for the first time on the focal themes of Picasso and Pop Art, has proven to be very successful. Among the most sought-after pieces were the works of two exceptional artists, namely Pablo Picasso and Andy Warhol.

The first part of the auction was dedicated to Pablo Picasso. Especially his ceramic work was well received. At the top of the outstanding hammer prices is the jug 'Visage aux yeux rieurs' designed for Madoura in 1969, which comes from a private collection in Berlin (Cat.No. 493, estimated price 26,000 - 32,000 EUR). The jug received a total revenue of 32,500 EUR including premium from an Anglo-Saxon customer. The imposing plate 'Taureau dans l'Arène', designed by Picasso as early as 1948, shows in the center one of the Master's favorite motifs: a bull (Cat.No. 487, estimate: 6,000 - 9,000 EUR). The hammer went down at 6,400 EUR in favor of a customer from Great Britain.

The positions of Pop often reached a multiple of their taxes. Works by Andy Warhol, Keith Haring, Allen Jones and Texan artist Luis Jiménez received particularly impressive results. The interest in proof prints by Andy Warhol was particularly high. The iconic image of 'Liz' (Cat.No. 593, estimated price 800 - 1,000 EUR) was bought by a telephone bidder for 18,500 EUR. The atmosphere became vibrant when the 'Three Stacked Figures' were called up, which Keith Haring immortalized on a New York subway sign of the ‚Bowery' station (Cat.No. 529, estimated price: 4.000-6.000 Euro). The lot quickly climbed to a hammer price of 14,000 EUR and the work is going now to the United Kingdom.

Unsold objects can still be purchased in the post-auction sale, which lasts until July 26th.