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Works by Miró and Warhol lead spring prints auction at Bonhams in San Francisco
Joan Miró (Spanish, 1893-1983), One Plate, from The Prints of Joan Miró (D. 48), 1947. Etching with handcoloring on Auvergne paper, signed in pencil and numbered X/L, published/printed by Curt Valentin/Atelier 17, New York, with full margins, framed. 4 7/8 x 5 7/8in/ Sheet 10 7/8 x 8 5/8in. Sold for $35,000; Est. $15,000-20,000.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA.- The auction of fine Prints at Bonhams, May 1 in San Francisco, simulcast to Los Angeles, brought an impressive result of $1,277,413.

Leading the auction were various works by Joan Miró (1893-1983). The top lot of the auction was Miró’s One Plate, from The Prints of Joan Miró, 1947, a signed etching with intricate handcoloring on Auvergne paper, which achieved $35,000, far exceeding its pre-sale estimate of $15,000-20,000.

Not far behind that lot in the top ten were two more of Miró’s works: Inceste au Sahara, 1975, a signed etching and aquatint in colors, which brought $32,500 (est. $20,000-30,000) and Les Orfevres, 1971-73, a signed, unique print with etching and handcoloring in crayon and pastel on wove paper, which took in $23,750 (est. $20,000-25,000).

Two iconic Andy Warhol (1928-1987) signed color screenprints also took up prominent spots among the top five in the sale. Warhol’s The Witch, from Myths, 1981, brought $31,250 (est. $20,000-30,000), while his Bighorn Ram, from Endangered Species, 1983, depicting a ram facing the right in vivid colors, sold for $27,500 (est. $12,000-16,000).

The Fine Prints Department Director at Bonhams, Judith Eurich, said of the spring auction, “We were very pleased with the result of the sale given the uncertain and roller coaster ride of the stock market this past year.”

The auction realized further success with two lots of very different styles which each brought $20,000: Collection of Etchings, 1920-37, a collection of 61 signed etchings on various papers of sites around the world by John Taylor Arms (American, 1887-1953), est. $15,000-20,000, and Figure 4, from Color Numeral Series, 1969, a signed color lithograph on Arjomari paper by Jasper Johns (American, born 1930), est. $7,000-10,000.

More sales of note included La Baie des Anges au Bouquet de Roses, from Nice et la Cote d'Azur, 1967, an After Marc Chagall (Russian/French, 1887-1985) signed lithograph in colors on Arches paper by Charles Sorlier, that sold for $18,750 (est. $8,000-12,000). The piece depicts a tree comprised of a woman, fish, bird and flowers. Another work to speak of is Kleine Welten II, from Kleine Welten, 1922, a signed lithograph in colors on wove paper by Wassily Kandinsky (Russian, 1866-1944), which took in $17,500 (est. $12,000-18,000).

Rounding out the sale were three works which each brought $16,250: Drypoint - Ocean Surface, 1983, a signed drypoint on Arches paper by Vija Celmins (Latvian, born 1939), est. $12,000-15,000; Colored Flowers made of paper and ink, a signed, colored lithograph by David Hockney (born 1937), featuring seven colored flowers in a vase on a surface with a variety of colored pencils (est. $15,000-$20,000); and Old Fashioned Vegetable, from Campbell's Soup II, 1969, a signed screenprint in colors on smooth wove paper by Andy Warhol (est. $12,000-16,000).

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