First combined sale for Forum & Dreweatts Auctioneers celebrates everything British
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First combined sale for Forum & Dreweatts Auctioneers celebrates everything British
The Complete Set of Five Empresses by Damien Hirst (b.1965). Est. £20,000-25,000 (Lot 104)



LONDON.- Dreweatts and Forum Auctions announced a new slot in their auction calendar titled The British Sale, which will take place on Tuesday December 13, 2022. The sister companies will showcase artworks by prominent Modern & Contemporary British artists, alongside limited-edition prints and multiples. The auction has been curated to offer both seasoned and new collectors an opportunity to acquire pieces from the second half of the 20th Century, through to more current works by popular British contemporary artists, such as Bridget Riley, Damian Hirst, David Hockney, Grayson Perry, Harland Miller, Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore and Chris Levine. The sale was devised to celebrate all things British and to service the increasing global interest in British artists. Estimates for the works range from £250 up to £150,000 and are guaranteed to reach their recipients in time for Christmas! 

Among the highlights are three hand finished etchings by Yorkshire artist and writer Harland Miller (b.1964). The artworks are Miller's iconic Penguin prints created after vintage book covers from the Penguin publishing house. One of the three, a woodcut print in a striking bright pink is from an edition of 50 and dates from 2021. Signed and dated, it carries an estimate of £45,000-£55,000 (Lot 93).

The sale will offer four lithographs by one of the most important British artists of the 20th Century, Barbara Hepworth (1903-1975). Recognised predominantly for her Modernist sculpture, Hepworth also produced spectacular graphic works on paper, which included etchings and lithographs such as these. One of the highlights titled Sea Forms while abstract, will have been inspired by the landscape around Hepworth, while living with her artist husband Ben Nicholson (1894-1982), on the Cornish coast. This dynamic work dates from 1969, is signed by the artist and is numbered from the edition of 60. It carries an estimate of £3,500-£4,000 (Lot 12).

The full set of five Empresses by controversial artist Damien Hirst (b.1965) is among several works by the artist in the sale. The prints, created in a vibrant red feature spiral patterns made up of one of




Hirst’s most well-known motifs – the butterfly. The butterflies are arranged on laminated giclée panels to form patterns, the material helping to create the illusion of the butterflies in flight, with a glitter effect adding to the sense of movement. Dating from 2022, the work is signed and numbered and carries an estimate of £20,000-£25,000 (Lot 104).

There are several artworks by graffiti artist Banksy (b.1974) in the sale, including one from the edition of four of the Bad Meaning Good album covers that he designed for the Bad Meaning Good music compilations between 2002 and 2003. The albums featured various artists and varying genres of music and were released in vinyl and CD formats. This particular work is from the Bad Meaning Good Volume 1 album, which consisted of tracks chosen by British DJ and music producer, Skitz. The painting in spray paint and emulsion on canvas portrays a stencilled black and white machine gun wearing oversized trainers in an almost comical way, detracting from the violent image of the machine gun and what it represents. An orange cross can be seen in the background, one of many symbols of Banksy’s anti-establishment statements about authority and control. Created in 2002 it is estimated to fetch £120,000-£150,000 (Lot 123).

Works by another popular British graffiti artist included in the sale is Stik (b. 1979), with two lots by the artist on offer. Holding Hands is a set of five lithographs featuring stick men/women holding hands. It is printed in bold colours, with each signed by the artist in black felt-tip pen on paper. The set carries an estimate of £4,000-£6,000 (Lot 120).

Among three works by British artist Bridget Riley CH CBE (b. 1931) is a screen print (Untitled, elongated triangles 6). The work is typical of her popular op art style of creating visual artworks that give onlookers a sense of illusion and movement, with oscillating patterns. Created in bold colours, this spectacular work was produced in 1971 and is signed, dated and numbered from an edition of 75. It carries an estimate of £6,000-£8,000 (Lot 720).

One of six works by revered British artist David Hockney (b.1937) is an early etching with aquatint titled Fires of Furious Desire inspired by the poem: 'O Flames of Furious Desire' by William Blake. Dating from 1961 it is from an edition of 75 and is signed and dated. It carries an estimate of £5,000-£7,000 (Lot 61).

Home Workers and Key Workers is a ceramic set of figures by contemporary artist Grayson Perry (b.1960), famed for his creations that explore identity. Perry designed the Staffordshire figures as part of his ‘Art Club Series 2’ and are models of the exhibition works in Bristol Museum. From an edition of 200 and stamped with the Staffordshire pottery mark, the set has an estimate of £3,000-£5,000 (Lot 116).










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