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Christie's October Photographs Sale to Offer Landmark Works by the Masters of the Medium

NEW YORK, NY.- On October 6 and 7, Christie’s New York will offer a broad range of photographs from the early 20th century to the present day. Highlights include important photographs, from many private collections including The Estate of Harry Lunn, Bruce and Nancy Berman; and Harvey Shipley Miller and Randall Plummer. Artists such as Diane Arbus, Ansel Adams, Man Ray, Irving Penn, William Eggleston and Lise Sarfati will be featured prominently. The sale comprises 349 lots and is expected to realize from $4.5 million to $6.8 million.

Highlights include Grand Tetons and the Snake River, Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, 1942, (estimate: $150,000-250,000), one of Ansel Adam’s most recognizable and extraordinarily beautiful works. The work is one of nine mural prints of this image in existence and one of six in this size. This rare example was printed in the early 1960s.

Gracing the catalogue’s back cover is Man Ray’s Nude with Shadow (solarized), 1927 (estimate: $70,000-90,000). This vintage print by Man Ray is of an exceptional quality not seen at auction in several years.

Diane Arbus’ Identical Twins, 1967 (estimate: $250,000-350,000), is an important example of the artist’s unmistakable style and vision.

The sale will offer a substantial 23 works by renowned photographer Irving Penn, including Mouth (New York), 1986 (estimate: $100,000-150,000). Typical of much
of Penn’s most salient works, Mouth balances the glamour of fashion and the shock of art.

Christie’s is delighted to present a selection of photographs from The Estate of Harry Lunn as part of the sale. Lunn’s gallery in Washington D.C. was only the second establishment in the United States to be entirely devoted to photography. Over the course of his expansive career, he created markets for a formidable list of artists, including: Ansel Adams, Diane Arbus, Walker Evans and Robert Frank, as well as promoting the work of more controversial contemporary photographers, such as William Eggleston, Robert Mapplethorpe, Andres Serrano and Joel-Peter Witkin.

Among the selection from The Estate of Harry Lunn is a an extraordinarily rare chromogenic print by William Eggleston named En route to New Orleans, c. 1971-1974 (estimate: $15,000-25,000).

This sale also incorporates a number of works that illustrate New York City throughout the past 100 years, including two photographs from Joel Sternfeld, depicting the Highline before its recent overhaul: A Spring Evening, the Hudson, May 2001 (estimate: $8,000-12,000) and A Railroad Artifact, 30th Street, May 2000
(estimate: $8,000-12,000). Additional works include: Berenice Abbott’s El at Columbus Avenue and Broadway, Lincoln Square, N.Y., 1929 (estimate: $6,000-8,000) and Edward Pfizenmaier’s Wollman Rink, Central Park, New York, 1954 (estimate: $5,000-7,000).

There are two noteworthy works by Albert Sands Southworth and Josiah Hawes from the Harvey Shipley Miller and Randall Plummer Collection of Photographs. The first is a mammoth albumen print from a daguerreotype original of Chief Justice Lemuel Shaw, circa 1870 (estimate: $8,000-12,000). The other is a half-plate daguerreotype George Washington, after Gilbert Stuart, 1853 (estimate: $10,000-15,000). This selection of 49 lots from the Miller-Plummer Collection of Photographs follows the successful Christie’s 2009 single-owner sale from the same distinguished collection.

Finally Lise Sarfati’s Suzannah #23, Hillsboro OR, 2003 (estimate: $3,000-5,000) is the sale’s cover lot. This photo demonstrates the artist’s ability to capture the essence of dreamy adolescence.

Christie’s various owners photographs sale is one auction in a dynamic photographs season including A Historic Photographic Grand Tour: Important Daguerreotypes by Joseph-Philibert Girault de Prangey, a sale featuring 74 daguerreotype photographs, hails from a private collection at Christie’s New York on October 7 and the November 20 auction Avedon: Photographs from the Richard Avedon Foundation, which will offer 65 works from the famed photographer at Christie’s Paris.

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