Saturday, November 20, 2010

Colombian Fernando Botero's Matadors, Chile's Matta Top Latin American Auction at Christie's

Colombian Fernando Botero's Matadors, Chile's Matta Top Latin American Auction at Christie's


"Family Scene," by Colombian artist Fernando Botero

Colombian artist Fernando Botero's 2002 bronze sculpture, "Seated Woman," is pictured in outside Christie's in this undated handout photograph released on November 18, 2010. The piece drew $842,500 at Christie's Latin American art auction in New York on Wednesday evening. REUTERS/Christies Limited.

By: Walker Simon

NEW YORK (REUTERS).- A portrait of an infant matador and his bullfighting elders, painted by Colombian Fernando Botero, topped Christie's Latin American art sale, which also set auction records for postwar Brazilian, Colombian, Mexican and Argentine artists.

Botero's 1985 "Family Scene" of bullfighters fetched $1.7 million, the top lot of an $18.65 million sale on Wednesday evening, which also underscored strong demand for Chile's Matta, whose work bridges abstraction and surrealism.

Voluminous Boteros sold well. The corpulent bullfighters in "Family Scene" feature matadors in their finery, including a crawling toddler wearing a red tie and white stockings.

Botero's bronze "Seated Woman" sculpture sold for $842,500.

Matta's 1956 "S'Enroseer" and his 1942 "Untitled" also ranked as top lots, respectively at $866,500 and $842,500.

Matta taught budding U.S. abstract artists in New York, such as Robert Motherwell and Jackson Pollock.

Typical of his surrealist, abstract blend is the 1942 "Untitled," inspired by sprouting Mexican volcano Paracutin. It mixes dropped pigment with strokes of liquid color, centered on a fury of fiery reds, pea-like greens and sunbeam yellows.

Brazilian Adriana Varejao's "Paisagem Canibal" (Cannibal Landscape) set an auction record at $602,500.

Argentine Julio Le Parc's flickering early 1960s "Seuil de Perception, Continuel-lumiere-Mobile" set a record at $506,500. It consists of wood, metal, nylon strings and light bulbs.

Brazilian Helio Oiticica's "Mataesquema (Dois Brancos) fetched $362,500.

Colombian Alpio Jaramillo's blend of Cubism and social realism, "9 de abril," paints the fury and slaughter of the 1948 urban riots which convulsed Bogota after the assassination of a progressive presidential candidate.

The painting's sale for $110,500 marked the first time Jaramillo's work was brought to international auction.

Mexican Julio Galan's oil, ribbon and found objects on canvas, his 1992 "Mis Amigos Secretos" (My Secret Friends), set a record at $98,500.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

A New Auction Record for Amedeo Modigliani at Sotheby's Evening Sale in New York


A Sotheby's employee discusses the merits of the painting "La Belle Romaine" by Amedeo Modigliani during a preview of Sotheby's Impressionist & Modern Art auction in New York. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson.

NEW YORK, NY.- Sotheby's Evening Sale of Impressionist and Modern Art is currently underway in New York and a number of exceptional prices have already been achieved:

· A new auction record for Amedeo Modigliani was set tonight when the artist’s iconic Nu assis sur un divan (La Belle Romaine) sold for a remarkable $68,962,500. Five different bidders competed for the stunning nude, driving the price well past the more than $40 million* that had been expected. La Belle Romaine is from Modigliani’s most important series of nudes, all painted circa 1917.

Other highlights thus far included two works sold tonight to benefit YoungArts, the core program of the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts (NFAA): Le Bassin aux Nymphéas, a spectacular canvas from Claude Monet’s iconic water lilies series which sold for $24,722,500 and Amedeo Modigliani’s Jeanne Hébuterne (au chapeau), one of the artist’s first major portraits of the muse that dominated his art in the final years of his life which brought $19,122,500.

Founded in 1981, YoungArts is the only national program that recognizes artistic excellence in 17- and 18-year olds by providing them with life-changing experiences that inspire their pursuit of the arts. YoungArts provides more than $500,000 in grants annually to support artistic endeavors and studies for these aspiring artists, and ensures that they will be exposed to mentors and tools that will lead them on a pathway to a serious career in the arts or prepare them for schools like Harvard, Juilliard, Carnegie Mellon or many others.
Amedeo Modigliani