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Top Ten Works from Editions Sale at Phillps de Pury & Company

Last night’s Editions auction at Phillips de Pury & Company New York on November 22nd totaled $3,033,813 (including premium) selling 83% by lots, New York Modern and Contemporary Editions department 2010 auction totals $5,319,176 – the strongest year since the department began in 2008.

Interestingly, 43 works from the prominent corporate art collection placed some of the most premiere examples of American and European printmaking on the auction block. Works by David Hockney, Jasper Johns, Ellsworth Kelly, John Baldessari, Richard Diebenkorn and Roy Lichtenstein from the Collection positively impacted the results of today’s sale by being sold 100% by lot. Works by Feitelson, Lichtenstein, Baldessari, Sultan, Guston and Matisse generated record auction prices.

Meet the top ten works sold at the Editions Sale.

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1. Lot# 49.  PABLO PICASSO

__La femme à la fenêtre, 1952-3

__Aquatint and etching, on Arches paper

__Size: 35 3/8 x 25 inches ; Image: 32 3/4 x 18 5/8 inches

__Edition: 32/50 (there were also 15 artist’s proofs) ; Signed

__ESTIMATE $90,000-120,000 __SOLD AT $170,500

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Pablo had told me, that first afternoon I visited him alone, in February 1944, that he felt our relationship would bring light into both of our lives. My coming to him, he said, seemed like a window that was opening up and he wanted it to remain open. I did, too, as long as it let in the light. During the fall of 1952 [Madame Ramié] imported a young cousin of hers named Jacqueline Roque to be a salesgirl at the pottery [shop]…She spoke a little Spanish and since very little pottery was sold in the winter, her chief occupation appeared to be holding conversations in Spanish with Pablo…he undoubtedly saw Jacqueline Roque and talked with her more often than I might have imagined at the time, had I given it any thought…A week after I left Vallauris on September 30, Pablo came to Paris and stayed two weeks. Within a week of the time he got back to the Midi, Jacqueline Roque had taken over. [Francoise Gilot, Life with Picasso, McGraw-Hill, Inc., New York, 1964, p. 358 and p. 367]

In the upper right corner of the plate, one can see the word Lacourière written in drypoint (reversed from printing). Picasso saw this plate in the studio and drew Francoise looking out a window on the back side of it. The copper plate manufacturer etched the word to signal it was going to that printshop.

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2. Lot# 182. JASPER JOHNS

__Flags II, 1973

__Screenprint in colors, on J.B. Green paper

__Size: 27 1/2 x 35 inches ; Image: 25 1/2 x 33 1/8 inches

__Editions: 2/2 PP (there were 60 editions and 10 AP); Signed

__ESTIMATE $20,000-30,000 __SOLD AT $47,500

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…a density of surface characterizes the screenprint Flags II (1973; cat. no. 31), such that the print takes on an entirely new quality. It is neither painting, drawing, nor relief sculpture, but a bit of all three. By adding varnish to some of the printing inks—notably on the right side—and using cut stencils in concert with more painterly resist, stencils, Johns was able to make a surface that emulates encaustic on one side, oil paint on the other. [Mark Pascale, Conditional States: The Appearance of Gray in Jasper John’s Graphic Work, The Art Institute of Chicago, 2007, p. 116-7]

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3. Lot# 71. FRIEDENSREICH HUNDERTWASSER

__Skyscraper and Villiage Church, 1976

__Unique hand-woven wool tapestry in colors

__Size: 102 1/2 x 69 inches

__Signed

__ESTIMATE $15,000-25,000 __SOLD AT $45,000

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Hundertwasser had sixty-nine unique tapestries made by a few weavers. When transforming his works into a tapestry, his main concern was to do this freehand, without a template, so the weaver was open to artistic interpretation and “life could be breathed into the object” and not be just a copy of the model.

In this painting he set out to prove that “the dwelling cells in high-rises can be individually varied and humane and positive…so that a person can already see where he lives from the outside” - Friedensreich Hundertwasser and the Fight Against the Straight Line

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4. Lot# 42. HENRI MATISSE

__Grand masque, 1948

__Aquatint, on Marais paper

__Size: 26 1/8 x 20 inches ; Image: 17 1/8 x 13 3/4 inches

__Editions: 25/25 (there were also 5 AP) ; Signed

__ESTIMATE $20,000-30,000__SOLD AT $43,750

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5. Lot# 43. HENRI MATISSE

__Nadia aux cheveux lisses, 1948

__Aquatint, on Marais paper

__Size: 26 x 19 7/8 inches ; Image: 17 x 13 3/4 inches

__Edition: 3/25 (there were also 5 AP) ; Signed

__ESTIMATE $15,000-25,000__ SOLD AT $43,750

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6. Lot# 20. ELLSWORTH KELLY

Purple/Red/Grey/Orange, 1988

Lithograph in colors, on Arches 88 paper

Size: 51 1/2 x 225 1/2 inches ; Image: 42 x 204 inches

Edition: AP 1/8 (there are 18 editions) ; Signed

ESTIMATE $25,000-35,000__ SOLD AT $40,000

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7. Lot# 255. AGNES MARTIN

__On a Clear Day portfolio: four plates, 1973

__Four screenprints in gray, on Japanese rag paper

__Size: 12 1/8 x 12 inches ; Image: various sizes

__All signed and annotated `a.p.’, two noted `8′ and `23′ at upper left in __pencil (one of 14 artist’s proofs, aside from the edition of 50)

__ESTIMATE $10,000-15,000 __SOLD AT $37,500

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8. Lot# 324. KEITH HARING

Pyramid, 1989

Screenprint in colors, on anodized aluminum

Size: 40 3/4 x 57 1/2 inches

Edition: 13/30 ; printed signature

ESTIMATE $30,000-50,000__ SOLD AT $37,500

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9. Lot# 261. BRICE MARDEN

__Cold Mountain Series, Zen Studies: #2, 1991

__Etching with aquatint in white and black on Whatman paper

__Size: 27 1/2 x 35 1/4 inches ; Image: 20 3/4 x 27 1/4 inches

__Edition: 20/35 (there were also 15 AP) ; Signed

__ESTIMATE $25,000-35,000 __SOLD AT $37,500

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10. Lot# 214. ANDY WARHOL

__Mao, 1972

__Screenprint in colors, on Beckett High White paper

__Size: 36 x 36 inches

__Edition: 105/250 (there were also 50 AP) ; Signed

__ESTIMATE $30,000-40,000__ SOLD AT $35,000

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To see more lots click here.

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