OK, so it's that time of year again. Next week or so the fall auctions will begin, and, just as I had in the spring, I'm sharing my Fantasy Auction 2005 (Fall Edition). Word on the street (that would be 10th Avenue, mostly near 23rd Street [OK, really just at the Half King]) is that Contemporary and Modern sales are expected to continue their upward spiral. Recent photography auctions certainly have surpassed expectations.
The NYT reports that the controversy this time around---what would auction season be without a little scandal now?---is how many Modern works on the block are coming from major museums' inventory. The Modigliani seen here is being sold by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and is expected to bring $4 million to $6 million:
For these present purposes though, just like last time, I'll limit my attention to work up for sale by living artists (generally speaking). Again, how this works is, I find $3 million dollars under my mattress (every 6 months, no less), which is all I can spend, and then use the three major auction houses' online catalogs to choose what I'll bid on up to that amount. I'll use their results to report back how I did based on whether my upper limit was enough to secure a piece. Here we go:
Undaunted by the tempest over the New York Public Library's sale of a prized painting, arts institutions across the country are cleaning out their closets for auctions starting next week, stirring fresh unease among art historians and curators.
Modigliani's "Portrait of Manuel Humbert," to be sold by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, is expected to bring $4 million to $6 million. Artworks going on the block include paintings by Picasso, Modigliani and Chagall, and rare photographs by masters like Alfred Stieglitz and Edward Weston. In December, the public library is moving ahead with the sale of two portraits of George Washington, by Gilbert Stuart, and 16 other paintings.
Sotheby's (warning: the buggers now make you register...but it's free)
Sale No. 8129
9 Nov 05, 07:00 PM.
Luc Tuymans (LOT 4)
Oil on canvas
Diameter: 28 in. 71.2 cm.
ESTIMATE: $ 350,000—450,000 (I've been a bit disappointed in Tuymans lately, but I'll have a good look at this one...if it's as nice as the photo suggests, I'll go up to $500,000)
Cy Twombly (LOT 29)
Untitled (New York City)
Signed and dated NYC 1968 on the reverse
Oil based house paint and wax crayon on canvas
68 x 85 in. 172.7 x 215.9 cm.
ESTIMATE: $ 8,000,000—10,000,000 (Yes, yes, I've only got 3mil, but maybe if I can sneak past the guards and lick the back of this, no one else will want it...or maybe a false bomb scare would clear the room...or...oh, alright...I'll go up to $3,000,000 and just have Bambino stare down anyone who outbids me...it is called "fantasy auctions" afterall. Obviously, if I get it, all the rest of this is mute...but since that's unlikely, I'll carry on.)
Edward Ruscha (LOT 37)
You and Your Neighbors
Signed and dated 1987 on the reverse; signed, titled and dated 1987 on the stretcher
Acrylic on canvas
54 x 120 in. 137.2 x 304.9 cm.
ESTIMATE: $ 600,000—800,000 (I'll go up to $750,000)
Sotheby'sYes, yes, Andy's dead, but look at this...it's fabulous (this "living" artist rule will be somewhat liberally adhered to). I have to get this for Bambino.
Sale No. 08130
Session 1 10 Nov 05, 10:15 AM.
Session 2 10 Nov 05, 02:00 PM.
Andy Warhol (LOT 262)
Hammer and Sickle
Graphite and watercolor on paper.
Executed in 1976, this work is stamped by the Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board Inc. and numbered A156.042 on the reverse.
40 1/2 by 28 in. 102.9 by 71.1 cm.
ESTIMATE: $ 70,000—90,000 (I'll go up to $125,000...Bambino's worth it)
Christie'sI'd almost feel guilty buying this (I can think of other people who should have it), but if it goes under my top price, I'll take good care of it):
Post War & Contemporary Art (Evening Sale)
8 November 2005, 7:00 pm
20 Rockefeller Plaza, New York
Elizabeth Peyton (LOT 63)
Colin de Land
Oil on canvas
60 x 40 in. (152.4 x 101.6 cm.)
Painted in 1994. This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist.
ESTIMATE: $ 400,000 - 600,000 (I'll go up to $750,000 but only because of the subject)
Christie'sNOTE: This is perhaps the most interesting Session for younger artists, including works by Julie Mehretu, Dana Schutz, Kehinde Wiley. Folks will be watching this one carefully.
Post War & Contemporary (Afternoon Session)
9 November 2005, 2:00 pm
20 Rockefeller Plaza, New York
Candida Höfer (LOT 499)
Scuola Grande Arcionfraternita di S. Rocco Venezia I
47 x 72 in. 119.4 x 182.9 cm.
Executed in 2003. This work is number two from an edition of six.
ESTIMATE: $ 20,000 - 30,000 (I'll go up to $40,000)
James Casebere (LOT 519)
Four Flooded Arches from Right with Fog
Signed 'J Casebere' (on a paper label affixed to the stretcher of the upper panel).
Diptych--digital chromogenic prints face mounted to Plexiglas.
Each: 48 x 77 in. 121.9 x 195.6 cm.
Executed in 1999. This work is number one from an edition of three.
ESTIMATE: $ 25,000 - 35,000 (I'll go up to $45,000)
Contemporary Art Part I
10 Nov 2005, 7:00 PM EST
New York, NY010505
Cy Twombly (LOT 57)
Signed "Cy Twombly" upper right.
Oil, graphite and pastel on canvas.
9 ¾ x 13 ? in. (24.8 x 35.2 cm).
Executed in 1961.
ESTIMATE: $ 200,000-300,000 )I'd go up to $500,000 [which I suspect it will go to easily, but...])
Contemporary Art Part II
11 Nov 2005, 10:00 AM EST
New York, NY010605
Zhang Huan (LOT 194)
To Raise the Water Level in a Fishpond (Close Up).
Signed, dated "1997", tilted in Chinese and numbered on the reverse.
Cibachrome photograph on Fuji archival paper.
64 x 94 in. (162.6 x 238.8 cm).
Executed in 1997.
This work is from an edition of one plus one artist's proof.
ESTIMATE: $ 20,000-30,000 (I'll go up to $60,000)
Feliz Gonzalez-Torres (1957-1996 [OK, so I'm breaking my "living artist" rule]) (LOT 219)
Signed "Felix Gonzalez-T" upper right corner. black and white photograph.
5 ½ x 6 ¾ in. (14 x 17.1 cm).
Executed ca. 1983.
ESTIMATE: $ 8,000-12,000 (I'll go up to $17,000)
Yayoi Kusama (LOT 392)
Signed, titled, dedicated and dated "Yayoi Kusama 1960 Nets Obsession To Peter Rohr" on the reverse.
Oil on board.
19 ¾ x 15 ½ in. (50.2 x 39.4 cm).
Executed in 1960.
This work is accompanied by a photocertificate signed by the artist.
ESTIMATE: $ 30,000-40,000 (I'll go up to $65,000)
Olafur Eliasson (LOT 454)
Signed, numbered of seven and dated "Olafur Eliasson 1998" on the underside of base.
Stone, steel rod, motor and wooden base with glass bowl cover.
9 x 9 ½ x 9 ½ in. (22.9 x 24.1 x 24.1 cm).
Executed in 1998.
This work is from an edition of seven.
ESTIMATE: $ 4,000-6,000 (love him, but this is a chunk of change for a piece of this edition size and scale...I'll stop at $5,500)
Contemporary Thurn u. Taxis Collection Part I
7 Nov 2005, 7:00 PM EST
New York, NY010705
Martin Kippenberger (1953-1997 [yes, breaking rule again, so sue me]) (LOT 15) Verstehe.And, yes, I'm a bit over budget (about half a mil), even without the first Twombly, but of course, I have to quit once all the money is spent, and there's always the chance I won't get anything. Results to come...
Signed and dated '"Martin Kippenberger 90" on the reverse. Oil on canvas.
47 x 39 in. (120.3 x 100 cm).
Executed in 1990.
ESTIMATE: $ 100,000-150,000 (MK's sizzling hot right now, so it's very unlikely this will go for so little, but I'll go up to $200,000)