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Phillips' highlights from London New Now Auction showcasing Contemporary Artists
Rafa Macarrón,He Vuelto A Nacer, signed with the artist's initials, titled and dated 'RM 14 HE VUELTO A NACER' lower right; acrylic, ink, crayon and paper collage on canvas, 140.3 x 260 cm (55 1/4 x 102 3/8 in.). Executed in 2014.

LONDON.- Phillips announces highlights ahead of the New Now sale in London on 8 December. The sale is led by Günther Förg and features a selection of works by contemporary artists including Caroline Walker, Sarah Ball, Kristy M Chan and Michaela Yearwood-Dan. Artists making their auction debut in this sale include Francesca Mollett, Pam Evelyn and Olivia Sterling. A series of works by German and German-speaking artists include an exemplary painting by Günther Förg, a work by auction newcomer Andi Fisher, as well as works by Gerhard Richter and Kiki Kogelnik. Further highlights include works by Theaster Gates and Michaël Borremans, among others. On view online and in Phillips’ London galleries alongside the New Now highlights viewing from 1 to 8 December is The Sovereign Art Foundation Students Prize Finalist’s Exhibition. The New Now sale is comprised of 196 lots and will take place on 8 December at 1pm.

Charlotte Gibbs, Head of New Now, said, “We are thrilled to present our December auction which includes a vibrant cross section of international names from both emerging and established markets. Celebrated artists such as Günther Förg and Theaster Gates will be shown alongside younger artists with rising markets such as Francesca Mollett, Olivia Sterling and Pam Evelyn. We are particularly proud to spotlight cutting-edge UK-based names including Michaela Yearwood-Dan, Matthew Krishanu, Caroline Walker, Kristy M Chan and Sarah Ball. Alongside our auction preview, we are partnering with The Sovereign Art Foundation to host the London Students Prize Finalists’ exhibition. We look forward to welcoming visitors to view our auction highlights and the exhibition in person when Phillips’ Berkeley Square galleries open on 1 December.”

German Speaking Artists
Leading the sale and painted in 2007, Untitled is a highlight of one of the last monumental series created by German artist Günther Förg. In a manner highly characteristic of his Spot Paintings, Förg here positions the viewer in front of a large off-white background filled with linear ‘spots’ almost rhythmically applied to the canvas and enhanced by a diverse colour palette of vibrant reds, blues, pinks, greens, purples counterpointed by deeper notes of browns and blacks. This rhythmic application allows for a brief sense of structure while leaving room for a deceptive simplicity that is once again done thoughtfully and purposefully by the artist. Further highlights from German- speaking artists include works from Gerhard Richter, Kiki Kogelnik and auction newcomer Andi Fisher.

UK-based Contemporary Artists
Caroline Walker’s Overnighter immediately transports the viewer into an intimate moment. Depicting a lone woman standing by a bed in the middle of the night, the present work asks the viewer to adopt a somewhat voyeuristic gaze. Positioned just off-centre with her arms crossed over her chest to maintain the warmth of a robe, we share a transitory moment with the figure. Walker leaves enough ambiguity and psychological space for viewers to imagine multiple scenarios and outcomes to her sumptuously painted scenes.

Yorkshire-born Sarah Ball’s Marie stares at the viewer with a deep and intense gaze in her serene 2019 painting. Enhanced by rosy cheeks and thin, tightly pressed together lips, the figure’s pale skin is strikingly luminous, framed by the thick fur coat wrapped around their head and shoulders to insulate from the cold. Marie is an arresting example of Ball’s detailed portraits, in which she specifically explores the connections between the physical presentation of the self and traditional binary norms.

Further works by contemporary UK-based artists include Michaela Yearwood-Dan’s Love Letters to Siri no.2, and Kristy M Chan’s Tristan and his video art collection.

Auction Debuts
Included among the artists making their auction debut in the New Now auction this December is British artist Francesca Mollett. Mollett’s 2021 painting Untitled (Surfacing) is highly characteristic of her more recent work, visually dissecting the complex interrelationship between nature, the body and the mind. Building on her previous interrogations of abstract natural scenes, her current paintings intersperse visions of an observed natural environment in tandem with her own psychological musings. Drawn to abstraction as a way of dissolving boundaries between forms and creating space for emotional expression, Mollett’s practice draws especially on the fluid, shifting, and transformative qualities of weather and water to striking effect.

Contemporary Masterworks
A further celebrated contemporary artist whose work will be offered in the sale is Theaster Gates. Executed on a large scale, Gates’ wall sculpture, Topological Study with Hose, is made up of decommissioned fire hose piping, sourced from Pell City, Alabama, in a direct reference to the 1963 Birmingham Campaign and civil rights protest led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.. Gates also sourced the wooden frame from a school in the Dorchester area of Chicago which had been due to close, alluding to the widespread defunding of African-American urban communities in the wake of the 2007-2008 financial crisis. Gates’s work has been presented in exhibitions in New York, Los Angeles, London, Paris, Shanghai, Milan and Chicago, with an exhibition most recently at the Whitechapel Gallery in London. His works have been acquired for major collections worldwide including at the Kunstmuseum Basel, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Tate and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Further internationally renowned artworks include, among others, works from Michaël Borremans, Anthony Gormley, Keith Haring, Peter Halley, John Baldessari and Rafa Macarrón.

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