Phillips announces highlights from the upcoming auction of Editions and Works on Paper
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Phillips announces highlights from the upcoming auction of Editions and Works on Paper
Roy Lichtenstein, The Den - Unique State, 1990-1996. Estimate: $200,000-300,000. Image courtesy of Phillips.

NEW YORK, NY.- Phillips announced highlights from the upcoming auction of Editions and Works on Paper Including Works from the Piero Crommelynck Collection. The sale will take place in three sessions on 18 April at 10am, 2pm, and 6:30pm, offering nearly 400 lots of exceptional quality and significance. Featuring pieces from Picasso, Braque, and Miró to Lichtenstein, Warhol, and Turrell, the sale offers a tremendous breadth of modern and contemporary material. The auction will also include a special selection of over 100 engravings from the collection of master printmaker and engraver Piero Crommelynck. In all, the sale is expected to realize in excess of $4 million.

Kelly Troester, Phillips’ Worldwide Co-Director, Modern Editions, and Cary Leibowitz, Phillips’ Worldwide Co-Director, Contemporary Editions, said, “On the heels of our January auction, which achieved the highest total for the category at Phillips London, we are delighted to present such a strong sale in New York. Our April auction brings together works by the most significant artists of the 20th and 21st centuries, many of which are fresh to the market or have a history equally as impressive as their creators. The master printer Piero Crommelynck, for example, had an incredible career, working with Joan Miró and Pablo Picasso to Jasper Johns and David Hockney, and the 100 works we are offering in this sale from his collection are a testament to his significance in 20th century art.”

Leading the auction on 18 April is Andy Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup I (estimate: 300,000-500,000). This iconic set of 10 screenprints was executed in 1968 and is from the edition of 250. The screenprinted soup cans, which have become so closely associated with Warhol, are emblematic of his obsession with creating slick, seemingly mass-produced artworks. The clean, mechanical surface and perfect registration of the screenprinting process afforded Warhol a revolutionary absence of authorship that was crucial to the Pop Art manifesto.

Roy Lichtenstein’s Nude with Blue Hair, from Nudes Series (estimate: 350,000-450,000) is also among the top contemporary works from the sale and is the cover lot. Completed in 1994 and from an edition of 40, this large-scale Pop artwork is one of six lots by Lichtenstein to be offered in the auction. Additional works by the artist include Moonscape from Landscape Series (estimate: 40,000-60,000) and The Den - Unique State (estimate: 200,000-300,000), which was executed in 1990-1996 and is a completely unique, created from painted and printed paper collaged to woodcut and screenprint in colors.

A strong group of prints by Vija Celmins will be offered, including a set of four lithographs from 1975 – Ocean, Desert, Sky, and Galaxy (estimate: 30,000-50,000). The ocean, the desert, and the stars are sources of endless fascination for Celmins, who has meticulously rendered and reinterpreted these vast expanses of the environment across different disciplines since the 1960s. The ten lots in this sale exemplify Celmins’ continuous quest for the perfect artistic representation of nature, in both its unchanging durability and constant fluidity.

Brice Marden’s Etchings to Rexroth , 1986 (estimate: $70,000-100,000) and James Turrell’s First Light , 1985 (estimate: $50,000-70,000), both sets of etchings and aquatints, will also be included in the auction on 18 April.

Five linocuts by Pablo Picasso are among the Modern highlights from the sale. The only still-life of the group and considered one of his masterpieces in this medium, Nature morte au verre sous la lampe (Still Life with Glass under the Lamp) , was executed in 1962 and from an edition of 50 (estimate: 200,000-300,000). Additional subjects from the group include Jacqueline lisant (Jacqueline Reading), Grand nu de femme (Large Nude Woman), and Danseurs et Musicien (Dancers and Musician) .

Modern American prints also have a fresh presence in the sale. Martin Lewis’ Chance Meeting (estimate: $10,00015,000) and Shadow Dance (estimate: $25,000-35,000) will both be offered. Shadow Dance , which appears to depict the intersection of 34th Street and Park Avenue in New York City, may be seen as one of Lewis's most abstract prints. He all but blocked out the print's one light source, the sun, with two sets of three figures. Three works by John Marin depicting New York City will also be offered, including two etchings and a graphite drawing titled Figures Downtown, New York City , 1932 (estimate: $4,000-6,000).

Works from the Piero Crommelynck Collection
The 10am session of the auction will include 67 lots from the collection of master printmaker and engraver Piero Crommelynck. While most frequently remembered as Picasso’s favorite printer of his late intaglios, or the “Prince of the printers,” as film director Jean-Michel Meurice would call him, in his over forty-year career, Piero famously worked alongside his brother Aldo to bring to life graphic works of art. They developed technical processes for numerous artists who have come to define the visual culture of the 20th century – from modernist peintre - graveur Joan Miró, Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, and Le Corbusier to post-war David Hockney, Jim Dine, Jasper Johns and Richard Hamilton, all included in this sale. In the 1990s, Piero opened his own studio and began publishing under his own name, collaborating with a great number of celebrated contemporary European artists, such as Sam Szafran, Pierre Alechinsky and Not Vital. This auction marks the first time these works have been publicly exhibited or offered at auction.

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