NEW YORK, NY.- Swann Galleries
sale of Classic & Contemporary Photographs on Tuesday, February 25 will bring forth an impressive selection of works, with American photographers forming the foundation of the sale. Highlights include works by Edward Steichen, landscape images from Edward and Brett Weston, documentary photography and more.
A selection of floral studies forms a high point of the sale, with the scarce 1939 (printed 1940) Edward Steichen dye transfer print White Lotus. Shot at Steichens nursery in Umpawaug, CT and printed by Noel Deeks, who was associated with the master photographer from 1917 to 1942, the work is expected to bring $50,000 to $75,000. Imogen Cunninghams Magnolia Blossom, silver print, 1925, printed circa 1970, is present at $10,000 to $15,000, while Robert Mapplethorpes photogravures Three Roses in a Vase, 1983, and Tulip, 1984, are expected to bring $4,000 to $6,000 apiece.
A run of works by the masters of California formalism includes silver prints by Edward Weston, Brett Weston and Minor White. Highlights from the selection feature Edward Westons Eroded Rock, 1930 ($12,000-18,000), and Salt Beds, Floor of Death Valley (Dantes View, Death Valley), 1938 ($5,000-7,500); Brett Westons Abstraction of Rocks, 1929 ($9,000-12,000), and Dune, Oceano, 1934 ($10,000-15,000); and Whites Beginnings, Rochester, New York (Frosted Window), 1952 ($7,000-10,000), Moon and Wall Encrustations, Pulneyville, NY, 1964 ($6,000-9,000), and Butte, Utah, 1964 ($4,000-6,000).
Studies in architecture verging on abstraction are led by Margaret Bourke-Whites 1933 warm-toned silver print The George Washington Bridge. The photo comes to auction from the collection of Robert Edward Kiehl, by descent, and is estimated at $50,000 to $75,000. Charles Sheelers propensity for complex compositions is on display with Buggy in a Barn, Doylestown, Pennsylvania (Christmas Card), sepia-toned silver print, 1915-17, printed 1928, with an estimate of $12,000 to $18,000. In 1932 Sheeler created a charcoal drawing from the image, now in the collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art. Harry Callahans multiple exposure silver print Chicago, circa 1948, is present at $15,000 to $20,000.
Portraits of artists include Steichens silver contact prints Constantin Brancusi, Voulangis, France, 1922, and Portrait of Henri Matisse, 1930 ($10,000-15,000, respectively); Mapplethorpes silver print of Annie Leibovitz, 1983 ($4,000-6,000); Dawoud Beys The Artist Sana Musasama, silver print, 1986-87 ($2,000-3,000); and Phillipe Halsmans silver print of Georgia OKeeffe, 1976 ($2,000-3,000).
Dorothea Lange and Walker Evans work for the Farm Security Administration include Langes Family Walking on Highway, Five Children, 1938, printed circa 1960 ($4,000-6,000) and Evanss 1936 silver print Company Houses for Steel Mill Workers, Birmingham, Alabama ($6,000-8,000).
Additional documentary photographs include Peru, 1947. Congreso Panamericano de Arquitectosa presentation album with 104 original photographs, of which 22 are by Martín Chambi. The images feature indigeonous people, pre-Colombian sites, artifacts, and architecture in addition to street scenes. The album was given to R. Berjman on the occasion of a Pan American Conference dedicated to architecture. The work is expected to bring at $30,000 to $40,000.
The popular vernacular section includes a group of six photographs of suffragists featuring images of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony ($800-$1,200); a collection of approximately 110 film stills from the 1933 movie King Kong with images of Skull Island and King Kong atop the New York City skyline ($2,000-3,000); an industrial album of 33 silver prints depicting the Redland, California distribution companys process from production to distribution with images of employees, factory workers crating, canning and shipping oranges, as well as supermarket displays ($1,000-1,500).
A select group of photobooks includes a signed copy of Man Rays Photographies, 1920-1934, to Jack P. Mayer ($4,000-6,000); Alfred Steiglitzs Souvenir Kodak Competition, 1905, with 10 mounted photographs by Steiglitz, Steichen, Anne Brigman and others ($4,000-6,000); and Karasu [Ravens], 1986, by Masahisa Fukase ($2,500-3,500).