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Sotheby's sale features a selective array of major photographs from vintage to contemporary
André Kertész, Workers underground Paris, ca. 1926. Vintage silver print, mounted on original card, 28.5 x 38.5 cm. Estimation: 80,000 – 120,000 EUR. Sotheby’s/ArtDigital Studio.
PARIS.- Sotheby’s Photography sale on November 16 will again be held during the Paris Photo fair, and feature a selective array of major photographs from vintage to contemporary. Highlight will be a portfolio of 65 Nudes by 65 different photographers from the famous Magnum Photos agency, which this year celebrates its 65th anniversary, to be sold in aid of the Magnum Heritage Foundation.

The sale will also include a number of prestige, vintage silver prints, including portraits by August Sander and Diane Arbus, along with a surrealist composition by Man Ray. Celebrated images by such masters of fashion photography as Peter Lindbergh and Irving Penn will add a touch of elegance and glamour, while the contemporary section comprises works by Robert Mapplethorpe, Izima Kaoru, Candida Höfer and Massimo Vitali.

HISTORIC, VINTAGE & MODERNIST PHOTOGRAPHY
The auction starts with a very rare full-plaque daguerreotype from the 1840s, entitled Pierrefonds (est. €30,000-40,000 / $38,800-51,800)*. It will be followed by a section devoted to European Modernism of the 1920s and ’30s led by an extraordinary ensemble of vintage silver-print portraits, including August Sander’s Der Erdgebundene Mensch (est. €30,000-50,000) and Moritz Nähr’s Portrait of Gustav Klimt with Cat from 1910-12 (est. €15,000-20,000 / $19,400-25,900) - an intimate, unforgettable image the great Jugendstil artist, whose geometric composition reflects the precepts of the Wiener Werkstätte.

Following the success of the Diane Arbus retrospective at the Jeu de Paume in Paris last year, Sotheby’s will be offering two vintage silver prints by the great American photographer: Woman with Briefcase and Pocketbook, N.Y.C. from 1962 (est. €40,000-50,000 / $51,800-64,700); and Waitress, Nudist Camp, N.J., arint with itsa dating from Arbus’ visit to the Sunshine Park nudist camp in New Jersey in 1963, and exploring themes of appearance and identity (est. €30,000-40,000 / $38,800-51,800).

Sotheby’s will be presenting an exceptional, previously unpublished photograph by Man Ray, (1935-37), reflecting his interest in the female body and its interaction with an object. Here he gives divine form to the body by superimposing a mould of the Venus de’Medici over a mannequin (est. €20,000-30,000/ $25,900-38,800).

Another outstanding lot is Karl Blossfeldt’s Papaver Orientalis, a vintage silver print characteristic of his work, with plants reduced to geometric forms structured in shades of grey. This austere, ascetic presentation captures the immensity and abundance of Nature in an individual, isolated plant (est. €45,000-65,000 / $58,200-84,200).

Sotheby’s will also offer a vintage silver print by the highly sought-after André Kertész: Untitled - Paris (1928/9). This print, in a rare and exceptionally large format, combines all the stylistic characteristics of Kertész in Paris, where he arrived in 1925 and began experimenting with a bold approach to perspective (epitomized by views from his window), and low-angle shots reducing human beings to anonymous figures seen from afar, offering the only sign of life amidst in a shadowy world (est. €80,000-120,000 / $103,600-155,400).

FASHION PHOTOGRAPHY
Sotheby’s is honoured to offer for auction a portfolio of 69 photographs by 65 photographers from the renowned Magnum Photos agency, which this year celebrates its 65th anniversary. These images of nudes and naked flesh are being sold to help finance the Foundation’s operating costs and efforts to preserve and promote the work of agency members and protect their copyright.

Fans of the Rolling Stones will be enthralled by an exceptional large-format portrait of Keith Richards by Peter Lindbergh (est. €40,000-60,000 / $51,800-77,700), taken at GQ magazine’s 1999 Man of the Year awards ceremony, and admirably conveying the turbulent past of the legendary British rock star. Another attractive lot, imbued with classical refinement, isRobert Mapplethorpe’s Flower (1985), a platinumpalladium print celebrating the wonders of Nature (est. €20,000-25,000 / $25,900-32,400).

Other highlights include Horst P. Horst’s Courrèges Bathing Suit (est. €18,000 -23,000 / $23,300-29,800); five photographs from Helmut Newton’s Big Nudes series (est. €12,000-15,000 / $15,500-19,400 each); Newton’s Mannequins Reclining from 1977 (est. €12,000-18,000 / $15,500-23,300); and, by Irving Penn, Girl Drinking (1949) and 12 Hands of Miles Davis from 1986 (est. €25,000-35,000 / $32,400-45,300 apiece).

CONTEMPORARY PHOTOGRAPHY
After the world record price obtained for Leni Riefenstahl and her 1936 Olympia portfolio in November 2011, Sotheby’s is proud to offer her Nuba portfolio, comprising 30 signed and titled prints from Sudan.

Riefenstahl visited East Africa in the mid-1950s after being inspired by Hemingway’s The Green Hills of Africa, with the aim of making a film. She set out to find an African tribe matching her ideas about ancient Africa, ‘uncorrupted’ and unspoilt by white or Arab intruders. After much fruitless searching she finally, towards the end of her stay, came across a photograph entitled A Nuba of Kordofan by the acclaimed George Rodger. The image fired her imagination, and she promptly decided to seek out the Nuba tribe and document their lifestyle and physical beauty. She returned to Africa in the early 1960s, and made further trips throughout the decade to the Mesakin and Korongo Nuba tribes, gradually building up a pictorial and factual album that paid tribute to the appeal and primitive ‘innocence’ of the Nuba, as well as evoking their rites, customs, ceremonies and sacrifices (est. €60,000-80,000 / $77,700-103,600).

The sale’s remarkable array of contemporary photographs includes Rosignano Beach, a large-format 1998 chromogenic print by Massimo Vitali (est. €15,000-20,000 / $19,400-25,900); two Ilfachrome prints by Guido Mocafico, Dendroaspis Viridis II and Vipera Berus Bosniensis & Vipera Aspis Melanique, from 2004 (est. €7,000-9,000 / $9,000-11,600 each); UA wears Toga from Izima Kaoru’s 2003/ series Landscapes with a Corpse (est. €12,000-18,000 / $15,500-23,300); and Candida Höfer’s Senate of Paris VII from 2007 (est. €15,000-20,000 / $19,400-25,900).





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