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Modern Design Visionaries: The Yurcik Collection offered at Sotheby's New York
George Nakashima, "Minguren Ii" Coffee Table. Spalted Buckeye maple burl and American black walnut, 17 1/4 x 80 1/2 x 51 1/8 in. (43.8 x 204.5 x 129.9 cm). Est. $100/150,000.
NEW YORK, NY.- On 18 December 2013, Sotheby’s New York will present Modern Design Visionaries: The Yurcik Collection, a dedicated auction of modern and contemporary design assembled by Joseph and Sheila Yurcik. The sale comprises a broad range of masterworks of iconic American Studio, Scandinavian and Contemporary design. Highlights of the collection include works by three American design legends, Harry Bertoia, Paul Evans and George Nakashima. The entire collection is on view in the York Avenue galleries.

Joseph Yurcik meaningfully recounts the impetus behind the collection, explaining that, “When Sheila and I decided to part with our design collection that we lovingly assembled over the last twenty plus years, it brought me to reflect on the experience of acquiring these wonderful objects, and what ‘collecting’ has meant to us. I have always felt like we have ‘selected’ more than ‘collected,’ and the true reward has been in ‘seeing’ the artistic merits of a given work. While our design acquisitions have been diverse, the works of Bertoia, Evans and Nakashima, in particular resonate with us. Each work presented in this auction is a discovery. Each has touched us in a very special way, and we hope they will be as much appreciated by their next stewards.”

One of the top lots of the sale is a signature piece by Paul Evans, a rare “Sculpture Front” Cabinet (est. $100/150,000) from 1969. A world auction record was achieved for the artist when the Yurciks acquired this piece from Sotheby’s New York in 2005. The cover lot of the catalogue, also by Paul Evans, is a striking “Sculpture Front” wall panel from 1974 (est. $50/70,000). The sale features outstanding pieces by George Nakashima, including a magnificent free-form “Minguren II” coffee table (est. $100/150,000) as well as a custom-designed rosewood “Kornblut” cabinet (est. $30/50,000). These pieces epitomize Nakashima’s use of dynamically figured woods. Also on offer is a strong selection of works by Harry Bertoia, highlighted by a large-scale “Sound Sculpture” circa 1970 (est. $80/120,000). These American design masterworks are complemented by a select offering of iconic Scandinavian and Contemporary design, including a rare “Drop” Chair from the Snack Bar at the Royal Hotel, SAS House, Copenhagen (est. $20/30,000) designed by Arne Jacobsen in 1958, and defining works by Judy Kensley McKie, Ron Arad and Shiro Kuramata.

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