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Sotheby's inaugural Auction of Asian and Western Contemporary Art in Asia to be held on 3 December
Roy Lichtenstein (1923 – 1997), Modern Room (Study). Est. HK$5.4–6.5 million / US$700,000–840,000. Photo: Sotheby's.

HONG KONG.- Sotheby’s Hong Kong is delighted to present Boundless: Contemporary Art, the company’s inaugural auction of Asian and Western contemporary art in Asia, to take place at Sotheby’s Hong Kong Gallery on 3 December 2012. Carefully curated by Sotheby’s worldwide team of specialists, the sale will offer over 80 works by Western artists such as Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein, Japanese artists including Yayoi Kusama, Chinese artists led by Chu Teh-Chun, Ju Ming and Zeng Fanzhi, as well as Indonesian artist Ay Tjoe Christine, among others. A variety of genres including works on canvas, sculptures, photography and prints will be featured. Estimated to fetch a total of HK$47 – 68 million / US$6.2 – 8.8 million*, this diverse collection is a feast of the most forward-looking in contemporary art for discerning collectors. All interior settings in the catalogue are photographed at The Masterpiece, Hong Kong, courtesy of New World Development Company Limited.

Following the extremely well-received selling exhibition of YAYOI KUSAMA – Hong Kong Blooms in My Mind, Sotheby’s launches the auction Boundless: Contemporary Art in response to the growing demand in Asia, which has become obvious over the years. ARTHK (now Art Basel Hong Kong) has seen an exponential growth, the government-funded arts and cultural district is in promising progress, international galleries have set foot in Hong Kong and, for years, Sotheby’s has regularly previewed in Hong Kong contemporary art to be sold in New York and London with great success. All these speak volumes of Asia’s rising demand for the highest-quality contemporary art, be it Western or Asian. Curated by Sotheby’s worldwide team of specialists, Boundless: Contemporary Art will offer a selection of works from around the globe and be an excellent opportunity for collectors in the region to acquire the original, eclectic, cutting-edge and timeless in contemporary art that complement a modern lifestyle and transcend the boundaries of culture.

Roy Lichtenstein (1923 – 1997) Modern Room (Study)
Woodcut, lithography and printed and painted paper with collaged elements on board; executed in 1990-6; unique
Sheet: 143 x 204.5 cm; frame: 150.5 x 212 cm

The Interiors were the first major body of work undertaken by Roy Lichtenstein in the 1990s and Modern Room (Study) is a unique work from the series. A caricature of the types of excessive interiors prevalent in the 1980s that graced the pages of Architectural Digest, the work is filled with furniture that are reminiscent of 20th Century design icons, such as Italian architect and designer Achille Castiglioni’s Arco floor lamp, Hungarian-born architect and designer Marcel Breuer’s armchair, Warhol’s portrait of Mao and one of Lichtenstein’s own paintings, highlighting the role of art itself in this tableau of acquisition and possession, and establishing a dichotomy between East and West, history and present.

Andy Warhol (1928 – 1987) $(1) Sign
Colour screenprint on Lennox Museum Board; executed in 1982
50.2 x 39.7 cm (each)
Est. HK$280,000 – 480,000 / US$36,000 – 62,000 (each)
Est. HK$5.4 – 6.5 million / US$700,000 – 840,000

Created in 1982, $(1) Sign is among the most important creations by Andy Warhol and symbolises the inseparability of American Pop Art and Capitalism.

Yayoi Kusama (b.1929) Pumpkin
Fiberglass reinforced plastic and urethane paint; executed in 2010
92.5 (H) x 112.8 x 117.5 cm
Est. HK$3.2 – 3.6 million / US$410,000 – 470,000

The pumpkin is an important and one of the earliest motifs in Yayoi Kusama’s
oeuvre. This particular example combines the polka dots closely related to the
artist’s famous Infinity Net, as well as the black on yellow colour palette
recurring in the artist’s works.

Fernando Botero (b. 1932) Ballerina
Bronze; numbered 3/6; executed in 2003; 63.5 (H) x 30.5 x 16.5 cm
Est. HK$2.75 – 3.5 million / US$360,000 – 460,000

Instantly recognisable by the rounded voluptuous renderings of figures recurring in Western art history, Fernando Botero’s works are heavily sought after around the world. In Ballerina, Edgar Degas’ slender dancing figures are transformed into a full and curvy form defying the contemporary standard of beauty with enchanting confidence, joy and sensuousness.

Ju Ming (b.1938) Taichi Series
Bronze; numbered 2/6; executed in 1991; 151.5 (H) x 155 x 94.5 cm
Est. HK$3.2 – 5.2 million / US$410,000 – 680,000

Ju Ming’s Taichi Series is an artistic synthesis of Daoist philosophy with martial arts and the example offered portrays “Latent Explosion”, a Taichi quan move of defence followed by attack. Executed in life-sized model, this sculpture effectively conveys the explosive energy of Taichi and exerts an immediate impact on the viewer. Works from the Taichi Series grace public premises and institutions worldwide ranging from the Hakone Open-Air Museum in Japan, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, The Exchange Square, Hong Kong, to the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, among others.

Abstract Asian Art
Abstract painting is one of the few forms of imagery that speaks to a universal audience transcending the barriers of language or cultural difference. Sotheby’s presents a selection of abstract works by seven exceptional artists from Asia, among them Chu Teh-Chun, Ay Tjoe Christine and Zeng Fanzhi, who together present an extraordinary alternative vision to the predominance of Western narratives.

Chu Teh Chun (b.1920) Composition No. 170
Oil on canvas; executed in 1964; 65 x 81 cm
Est. HK$3.8 – 4.8 million / US$490,000 – 620,000

Permeated with dramatic tones of light and dark and a rich variety of brushstrokes, Composition No.170 exemplifies Chu Teh-Chun’s classic style in the 1960s. The subtle thin paint at the bottom creates a remarkable dripping effect while the overlapping black, white, blue and brown in the centre form a mountain landscape inviting the viewer into the ethereal world of Chu’s outstanding technique.

Zeng Fanzhi (b.1964) A Series No. 1
Oil on canvas; executed in 2000;
70 x 200 cm
Est. HK$1.2 – 2.2 million /
US$160,000 – 280,000
Created in 2000, A Series No. 1

incorporates a reinterpretation of the ferocious motif seen in the early Hospital series and Meat series and serves as a prelude to the later critically acclaimed Landscape series. Embodying key elements from Zeng’s most distinctive phases, this work is the first from his A series and therefore of great importance and rarity.

Ay Tjoe Christine (b.1973) We Made the Red Path
Oil on canvas; executed in 2010; 150 x 125.5 cm
Est. HK$180,000 – 250,000/ USD23,000 – 32,000

Created by Ay Tjoe Christine, one of the most distinguished contemporary Indonesian artists, We Made the Red Path features the artist’s signatory fragile black and white lines dancing through the semi-figurative dark red pigments, suggesting the notion of disjuncture and sensibility and the delicate yet passionate revelation of emotion within the modern human world.

*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium

^Selected highlights will be on view at Upper House hotel, Admiralty, Hong Kong

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