Phillips announces 20th Century & Contemporary Art Sales in New York

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Phillips announces 20th Century & Contemporary Art Sales in New York
Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988), Victor 25448. Acrylic, oilstick, wax and crayon on paper laid on canvas, 72 x 131 in. (182.9 x 332.7 cm) Executed in 1987. Valued at $10 million.

NEW YORK, NY.- Phillips announces its forthcoming 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale in New York City via livestream to bidders worldwide on July 2, 2020 at 5pm EDT. The sale will debut an enriched digital experience on, including augmented multimedia content, enhanced visuals, and art historical and market analysis that will allow for deep viewer engagement. A dynamic live auction streamed on our online platform will bring the live auction experience to collectors and viewers around the world using a virtual international bidding room of Phillips specialists.

“Phillips has been at the forefront of identifying the future of the bidding and buying experience online with the ability to bid on our app along with live streaming for nearly half a decade. We’re thrilled to bring our marquee Evening Sale to collectors worldwide in a format that will capture the intimacy and excitement of being in the room,” states Jean-Paul Engelen, Phillips Deputy Chairman and Worldwide Co-Head of 20th Century & Contemporary Art.

Featuring more than 20 lots, the sale includes works by artists highly sought after in today’s market including Joan Mitchell, Helen Frankenthaler, Gerhard Richter, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Matthew Wong, David Hammons, Amoako Boafo, Albert Oehlen, Lucas Arruda, Christina Quarles, Charles White, Banksy, KAWS and others.

“The works presented in our 20th Century & Contemporary Sale mark the bellwether of the art market today, featuring artists who have demonstrated collector demand across the globe with a focus on African American, female, and cutting-edge contemporary artists,” states Robert Manley, Phillips Deputy Chairman and Worldwide Co-Head of 20th Century & Contemporary Art.

Evening Sale Highlights
Two superlative works by artists of the 20th century include Joan Mitchell’s Noël and Helen Frankenthaler’s Head of the Meadow. An exceptional 1994 painting by Gerhard Richter hails from the height of his abstract period coincides with the highly regarded retrospective currently at the Met Breuer, Gerhard Richter: Painting After All.

Following the house’s stellar result for Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Flexible, which sold for more than $43million in 2018 more than doubling the pre-sale low estimate of $20 million, Phillips will offer an impressive work executed in 1987, just one year before his untimely death. Last offered publicly more than a decade ago, Victor 25448 captures the singular coalescence of text and imagery that is a hallmark of the artist’s celebrated practice.

An Old Master replica tagged with a stenciled monkey guzzling gasoline from a child’s juice box represents a significant work by master-interventionist Banksy to come to auction this season from his Crude Oil series. Fellow disruptor KAWS is represented with a large-scale early Companion painting from 2000.

On the heels of Phillips’ strong debut offering of American art in the 20th Century & Contemporary Sales with Norman Rockwell’s Before the Shot in November 2019, marking the first time the artist was ever included in a 20th Century and Contemporary Evening Sale and achieving a price of $4.7 million, this sale will offer a rare, never publicly-seen painting by Maxfield Parrish. Humpty Dumpty, 1921, hailing from The du Pont Family, captures the technical prowess and imagery which hovers between popular kitsch and surreal that has cemented the artist’s position as the “Grand Pop” of American Pop Art by Time magazine.

Phillips continues to debut artists with significant primary market following to auction. This season the sale will feature a painting by Matthew Wong, the self-taught artist known for this interior scenes and landscape depictions, marking one of the first paintings by Wong offered in an Evening Sale context. Other contemporary artists debuting this season include Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe and Robert Nava.

Charles White’s Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child from 1958, painted shortly after the artist moved to Los Angeles where he became an important teacher and mentor for African American artists at Otis College of Art and Design. Taking its title from an African American spiritual, which regained popularity in the civil rights movement, the work is a significant example of his signature draftsmanship utilizing ink wash in color. With an estimate of $700,000 – $1,000,000, the work is poised to make a world record for the artist in this medium.

David Hammons’ Untitled (Jordan begins his 8th season as no. 1) from 1991 transforms a copy of the Amsterdam News from November 2, 1991 into a work of contemporary realism.

Phillips continues to bring to market works by artists for which we have achieved world record results across our sales globally. The sale includes a painting Lucas Arruda whose world record was achieved at Phillips London in February 2020, realizing a price of £300,000, as well as a painting by Christina Quarles for whom we achieved the world record this past November 2019, $275,000, more than five times the low estimate of $50,000, after debuting the artist in a Phillips’ Day Sale New York November 2018. In addition, the sale will feature a work by Amoako Boafo, whose world record was achieved at Phillips London in February 2020 with his auction debut The Lemon Bathing Suit, which achieved a price of £675,000 more than twenty times its low estimate of £30,000.

Francis Picabia’s 1941-42 Portrait de Femme hails from a late period in the artist’s career devoted to painting pin-ups, which have gone on to have a significant influence on contemporary artists working today including John Currin and David Salle.

Day Sale Highlights
Phillips 20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale will be livestreamed to bidders worldwide on July 2 across two sessions, starting at 11am EDT and later at 2pm EDT. The sale will champion numerous artists from the 20th and 21st centuries, featuring more than 170 lots across both sessions.

Leading the Morning Session is John Chamberlain’s monumental Pure Drop, 1983, from the artist's Giraffe series. Pure Drop exemplifies Chamberlain's novel sandblasting technique, which began to define his oeuvre after his move to Florida in the early 1980s. Also featured in the sale is a remarkable landscape painting from 1995 by Cuban artist Tomas Sánchez, Meditador, its title referring to Sánchez’s conception of landscape playing a meditative role between man and nature. Another top lot is Kenneth Noland’s Resect, 1979, one of the artist’s renowned asymmetrically shaped canvases. Other notable works include sculptures by Anne Truitt and Joseph Cornell, and two works by Henri Laurens, culminating the selection of works from the Collection of Florence Knoll Bassett, which have been offered across Phillips’ 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Sales over the past year.

The Afternoon Session will feature works by important contemporary artists, including Jonathan Lyndon Chase, Matthew Wong, Amoako Boafo and Noah Davis—notably Davis’s 100 Years of Entertainment 1-5, 2008, which exemplifies the abstracted figuration for which the artist is known. This comes to auction on the heels of a new world auction record for the artist, set this past March at Phillips, with a painting selling for $400,000, over six times its low estimate. Another highlight will be Vivian Springford’s Untitled (Tanzania Series), 1972, the first work by the artist to be offered at Phillips. While an active figure in the New York art scene from the 1950s to the 1970s, Springford withdrew from the public eye until her work was rediscovered in the late 1990s just before her death, and more recently shown at Almine Rech Gallery in New York in 2018. The sale will also include John Baldessari’s Double Bill (Part 2): …and Ernst, 2012—a quintessential example of Baldessari’s unmistakable semiotic wordplay—from the Collection of Blake Byrne, Los Angeles.

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