Roseberys London: The Modern & Contemporary Prints & Multiples auction that took place on 7 July proved to be another stellar sale of outstanding results.
Shane Xu, Head of Department commented: We are very pleased that the sale achieved an overall great result. Once again, the Prints department carried on the tradition of breaking the record of our previous sale total. It is very nice to know that the market demand is still there during this uncertain time. The Modern British section was strong as usual, as most works are collected by private buyers for their own enjoyment. We had two special sections by Stanley Hayter and Taskashi Murakami, with all the work by both artists selling out. Outstanding highlights came from works by wide-ranging artists such as Frank Auerbach and Yoshitomo Nara, which again proves our ability to present works which can be either academic or commercially popular amongst our clients. We are pleased to continue to offer a great selection of prints by prestigious artists for the general public and help everyone to start their collection.
To begin the highlights within the start of the sale was the artworks created in 1977, by British artist and architect Victor Pasmore CH CBE, titled, The Image In Search of Itself, (lot 81). The complete portfolio of eleven screenprints were estimated to sell for £3,500 – £5,000. The work by the artist who pioneered the development of abstract art in Britain in the 40s and 50s, ended up achieving a price higher than its estimate, selling for £8,125.
Estimated to sell for £6,000 – £10,000, (lot 180) the Portrait of Jacqueline by Pablo Picasso sold for £15,000. The offset lithograph in colours on wove made in 1956 depicts Picasso’s muse and second wife Jacqueline. Their marriage lasted 11 years until his death, during which time he created over 400 portraits of her, more than any of Picasso’s other loves. The original of this print can be found in the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia.
The highest value lot of the auction was sold within the middle of the sale. Estimated to sell for £8,000 – £12,000, (lot 295) Frank Auerbach’s, complete set of six etchings on Arches wove titled, Six Etchings of Heads, sold for £18,750. Title’s and subjects within the etchings comprise of fellow famous artists and friends including Joe Tilson, R.B. Kitaj, Leon Kossoff, Lucian Freud and Gerda Boehm, who are regular sitters for Auerbach.
Work by British/American artist Susan Hiller was estimated to sell for £6,000 – 8,000, eventually realising the price of £12,500. The work titled The Storm (Addenda 3 to “Dedicated to the Unknown Artists”) was created in 1978. The collection involves three original sea charts, typed and typeset and eighteen vintage postcards mounted on seven boards. Beginning her artistic practice in the early 1970s, Hiller was influenced by the visual language of Minimalism and Conceptual art[ and later cited Minimalism, Fluxus, Surrealism and her study of anthropology as major influences on her work. Her art practice included installation, video, photography, performance and writing.
Within the Japanese contemporary works of art section of the sale, lot 428 by artist Yoshitomo Nara realised the highest price of £15,000. The work titled Cosmic Girl: Eyes Open/ Eyes Closed was estimated to make £5,000 – £7,000, finally achieving a price over double its top estimate. Nara is a contemporary of Takashi Murakami, whose artworks would follow swiftly after in the sale. Similar to Murakami her work has been influenced by pop culture in both the East and West.
At the end of the sale, a collection of twenty lots of artwork by Takashi Murakami had a 100% sell-through rate. One of the most acclaimed artists to emerge from post-war Asia, Takashi Murakami—“the Warhol of Japan”—is known for his contemporary Pop synthesis of fine art and pop culture, particularly his use of a boldly graphic and colourful anime and manga cartoon style, which the lots within the sale demonstrated perfectly. Overall, the works by the Japanese artist sold for £41,190, with the highlight from the collection being five offset lithographs in colours on wove (lot 441), titled Flowers Blooming in This World and the Land of Nirvana, 2013; selling for £6,000.