LOS ANGELES, CA.-
On May 3, 2011, Bonhams & Butterfields
presented its $1.6-million Fine Prints auction, marked by strong surrealism sales: the exceptional $134,000 purchase of Salvador Dalí's La Divine Comédie, a complete signed portfolio of 100 color wood engravings from Dante Alighieri, L'Enfer, La Purgatoire, and Le Paradis, estimated at $50,000-70,000; and The Magic Flute, an After Marc Chagall, color lithograph on wove paper, estimated at $20,000-30,000 that sold for $42,700.
The successful auction, held in San Francisco and simulcast in Los Angeles, also presented iconic Pop Art and abstract Expressionism highlights by famed artists Andy Warhol and Richard Diebenkorn - whose works sold very well. Andy Warhol's signed Marilyn Monroe color screenprint, circa 1967, was estimated at $40,000-60,000 and sold for $79,300; Richard Diebenkorn's initialed Blue with Red, circa 1987, color woodcut on Echizen Kozo Mashi paper was estimated at $20,000-30,000 and sold for $42,700; and Diebenkorn's initialed Spreading Spade, from the Clubs and Spades series, 1981, a color spite-bite aquatint and etching with drypoint, took in $20,740. Warhols Chicken n Dumplings, circa 1969, was estimated at $8,000-10,000 and sold for $17,080. Bonhams & Butterfields Fine Prints Director Judith Eurich said of the sale: Historically, the auction brought the best results the Prints Department has ever seen. There was a great amount of interest and competitive bidding all around.
The highly anticipated sale also featured above and beyond results with the sales of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec's Caudieux, a color lithograph, estimated at $15,000-25,000, sold for $30,500; Keith Haring's Pop Shop IV, complete set of 4 color screenprints, each signed and estimated at $15,000-20,000, sold for $29,280; the White-headed Eagle, Male, an After John James Audubon handcolored engraving with aquatint and etching, from the Havell edition of The Birds of America, estimated at $6,000-8,000, sold for $19,520; Femme au Chevalet, an After Claude Monet color lithograph, signed by Monet and Thornley, estimated at $8,000-12,000, sold for $18,300; and Eight by Eight to Celebrate the Temporary Contemporary by artists Richard Diebenkorn, Sam Francis, David Hockney, Ellsworth Kelly, Robert Rauschenberg, Niki de Saint Phalle, Jean Tinguely, and Andy Warhol, 1983, comprised of 7 of 8 prints of various media, each signed and estimated at $18,000-25,000, sold for $18,300.
Also featured were impressive works such as a Claude Monet signed Untitled (Lady at Easel) lithograph, circa 1908, estimated at $8,000-12,000, sold for $18,300 and a Pablo Picasso signed Femme nue à la Jambe pliée etching on Montval laid paper and watermarked 'Picasso,' circa 1931, estimated at $8,000-10,000 and sold for $11,590.