Published: September 2, 2015
CHICAGO, ILL. — The fall fine art auctions at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers will cover vast territory with key highlights from both leading names and unusual property that rarely meets the auction block. Postwar and contemporary art will open the run of sales September 24, followed the same day by prints and American and European art September 25.
In a private collection since 1970, a leading lot of the postwar and contemporary art sale is an Alexander Calder stabile from 1956, “Long Brass Tail” ($600/800,000). Two vividly colorful Calder gouaches will also be offered. An additional highlight is “Moutons de Pierre” (a pair of sheep) by Francoise-Xavier Lalanne. The pair of stylized epoxy, stone and painted bronze sheep is a quintessential example of the French sculptor’s zoomorphic Surrealism and among the most desirable of all his animal constructions ($150/250,000).
Two large-scale mixed media collages on canvas by former Springs, N.Y., neighbors Lee Krasner and Conrad Marca-Relli are leading highlights from national collections. Both Krasner’s “Past Present Subjunctive,” 1976 ($150/250,000) and Marca-Relli’s “L-4-57 (The Survival),” 1957 ($60/80,000), come from the estate of Rita Dee Hassenfeld of Palm Beach, Fla. Dynamic paintings by Roger Brown, Jim Dine, Jack Goldstein, Ed Paschke and Victor Vasarely, as well as compelling sculptures by Harry Bertoia, Louise Nevelson and Anne Truitt will also be offered.
The September 24 auction will feature a LeRoy Neiman painting, “Nymphs,” 1960, which was once owned by Hugh Hefner and hung in his Chicago Playboy Mansion bedroom ($60/80,000). Property from prominent Chicago collector Ruth Horwich, including works by Chicago Imagists Jim Nutt, Ray Yoshida and Karl Wirsum, are also points of significance.
The American and European art sale on September 25 builds on the strong bidding for American Ashcan and Realist works witnessed in the department’s May sale, Property from the Collection of Carol H. and Richard M. Levin, which featured several works by Thomas Hart Benton.
The sale will be led by a Robert Henri portrait titled “Eileen.” Executed in 1924 while the artist was living on Achill Island, this painting is a part of Henri’s most popular and widely recognized body of work. The model is Sarah Burke, daughter of the island’s butcher, whom Henri painted at least two additional times in the same year. This work highlights Henri’s ability to paint the vitality and character of his sitters and is a captivating example of the portraits for which he is known. “Eileen” has remained in the collection of Elizabeth Mahaffey Mullins since it was purchased from the artist. This is the first time it will appear at auction ($200/300,000).
Other American highlights of the sale include “The Necklace (La Femme au Collier)”
by American Impressionist Richard Miller ($150/250,000). Also available is a pastel drawing by James Abbott McNeill Whistler called “Parasol; red note,” which was first exhibited in London in 1884 and received criticism for its brazen nudity. The model, Carmen Rossi, sold the work in 1903 to a Paris gallery, which in turn sold it to a private collector. It changed hands in 1922, when New York City’s Knoedler & Company bought it, and then again in 1926. After many years, Leslie Hindman Auctioneers is bringing it back to market with an estimate of $60/80,000.
Distinctly Western paintings will also be available, such as Oscar Berninghaus’s “Taos Indians and the Sangre de Cristos” from 1915 ($80/120,000) and Victor Higgins’s “Meadow with Cattle” ($70/90,000). The sale will also offer several sculptures and paintings by European masters, including Emile Antoine Bourdelle¹s acclaimed bronze “Herakles,” archer ($100/200,000).
One highlight of the September 24 prints auction is a 1916 George Wesley Bellows print, “Preliminaries,” a lithograph of a boxing match, a popular subject for the artist ($20/30,000). The sale will also feature works by Roy Lichtenstein, David Hockney, Keith Haring, Joan Miro, Andy Warhol, Robert Indiana and Tom Wesselmann. Additional offerings from Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, Albrecht Dürer, Cornelis Visscher and others will be available.
Preview will be September 17–25 at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers, 1338 West Lake Street. For information, 312-280-1212 or www.lesliehindman.com.
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