Skinner to Host Auction of Prints, Photographs, Paintings, and Sculpture

. May 11, 2013

Boston, Mass. – Skinner, Inc. will auction prints, photographs, paintings, and sculpture on Friday, May 17th at its Boston gallery. The auction, presented in two sessions, will feature prints and photography starting at 12 p.m. and paintings and sculpture beginning at 4 p.m.

Fine Prints and Photography
The May prints and photography auction offers more than 200 works and covers a range of styles, countries, and periods. Artists include Dürer, LeWitt, Mucha, Koons, Simpson, Hassam, Hodgkins, Evans, Toulouse-Lautrec, Rembrandt, Cassatt, Miró, Cadmus, Lichtenstein, Warhol, and others.

Print highlights include Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s May Belfort (lot 149, estimated between $15,000 and $25,000) and a 1978 image of Muhammad Ali by Andy Warhol from an edition of 175 (lot 164, $15,000 to $20,000). From the estate of Elizabeth A. Straus of New York and Maine comes Red Palm from an edition of 85 plus proofs by Howard Hodgkins (lot 70, $5,000 to $7,000). A print by Frederick Childe Hassam titled Union Square (lot 67, $7,000 to $9,000) has found its way back to Skinner after having been sold during a Skinner auction in 1998.

Photographs include works by Adams, Edgerton, Siskind, Uelsmann, and others. A classic image from Ansel Adams entitled Moon and Half Dome, Yosemite National Park, California (lot 176, $4,000 to $6,000) from a special edition, Photographs of Yosemite, will be offered. Two athletic studies by Harold Eugene Edgerton include the 1952 artist’s proof Moving Skip Rope and Densmore Shute Bends the Shaft, 1939 (lot 179, $1,200 to $1,800). Four street scenes by Aaron Siskind from Harlem Document including Pawn Broker Sign over Market, Bootblacks, Boys Selling Bags, and Furnished Room to Let (lot 194, $2,000 to $2,500) will also be available.

Fine Paintings
Lesser Ury’s Rainy Night, Berlin (lot 484, $80,000 to $120,000) is an outstanding street scene by the German artist. Born in Birnbaum, Lesser Ury moved to Berlin as a youngster in 1871 and fell in love with the city. He studied art in Düsseldorf, Brussels, Paris, and Munich, where in 1893 he joined the Munich Secession, one of the several Secessions formed by progressive artists in Germany and Austria in the last years of the 19th century. In 1901 he returned to his beloved Berlin, where he exhibited with the Berlin Secession in 1915 and 1922. The city of Berlin provided a constant source of inspiration for Ury, who is best known for his urban landscapes under dark, cloud-filled or moonlit skies. This dramatic and expressive depiction of Berlin in the 1920s is from the estate of the artist through to Elsbeth Kaufman (Mrs. Otto Gottschalk), and came into the present owner’s possession through family descent. The work has been in the same family for three generations.

The River Epte, Giverny (lot 386, $100,000 to $150,000) by John Leslie Breck is a lush and serene canvas from 1887. Breck was among the earliest American artists to settle in picturesque Giverny. He subsequently entered Monet’s inner circle and became an exponent of the “new painting.” The quiet River Epte, with its tree-lined banks, was a favorite Giverny locale for painters and was recorded many times by Monet and other artists.

Jack Butler Yeats was one of the leading artists of Ireland in the 20th century. The brother of the poet William Butler Yeats, Jack shared an abiding love for Ireland with his brother and lived out his personal belief that an artist must be a part of the land and life that he painted. This is amply demonstrated in the wonderful painting A Lane in Kerry from 1914, which comes to Skinner from a private trust. The work was last seen on the market in the early 1990s (lot 464, $50,000 to $70,000).

Louis Rémy Mignot’s painting of a rainbow over a lake in the Hudson River Valley (lot 373, $30,000 to $50,000) of 1862 demonstrates the quiet repose of the artist’s mature style. The work’s contemplative, autumnal qualities may reflect the artist’s feelings about the opening hostilities of the Civil War. Mignot subsequently departed for Europe several months after completing this work, and remained there for the rest of his life.

Reginald Marsh’s Fat Men’s Shop (lot 498, $30,000 to $50,000) is one example of the artist’s affinity for bustling New York City scenes. From the estate of John Hay, this particular work was purchased from the artist in Dorset, Vermont. Marsh was a neighbor of the Hay family. A wonderful watercolor by John Marin, Hilltop, Autumn, Maine from 1923 is another work coming to Skinner from the estate of Elizabeth A. Straus (lot 531, $30,000 to $50,000).

Two works on paper by John Wesley including Landscape with Bathroom (lot 579, $12,000 to $18,000) and What’s Going On in the Hall? (lot 580, $18,000 to $22,000) will be offered. Both works descended through the family of Wesley. A work by Alexander Calder depicting two knights jousting (lot 555, $25,000 to $35,000) rounds out an excellent selection of contemporary works.

Fine Sculpture
Notable sculpture offerings include a hanging single-lobed, five-layer continuous form within a form made of crocheted wire by Ruth Lanier Asawa (lot 570, $30,000 to $40,000), purchased from the artist in 1999.

An untitled sculpture made of welded stainless steel rods by Harry Bertoia (lot 560, $10,000 to $15,000) will also be auctioned. Bertoia is best known for his metal sculptures, furniture designs, and drawings. In 1937 the promising young Italian-born artist entered the Cranbrook Academy for the Arts in Michigan. By 1939 he had impressed Eliel Saarinen, then director of Cranbrook, who asked Bertoia to start a department of metalworking at the school. After working on molded plywood furniture designs with Charles Eames from 1943 to 1946, Bertoia began experimenting further with metal sculpture. In 1950 Bertoia was invited to join the Knoll company, designers and manufacturers of modern furniture, where he was given free rein to design whatever he wished—furniture or sculpture—leading to the Bertoia Diamond Chair in 1952 and many other iconic furniture designs. Bertoia also developed “Tonals,” or sounding sculptures, which became his passion and whose sounds he recorded in his remodeled barn in Pennsylvania. These led to his dandelion-form sculptures, consisting of hundreds of carefully welded thin rods in a spray around a center orb, resembling a dandelion gone to seed. The sculpture at hand relates to the dandelion works, this time with the rods contained at welded junctions.

Previews, Catalog, Events, and Bidding
Previews for the auction will be held on Wednesday, May 15, 2013, 12 p.m.-5 p.m., and Thursday, May 16, 2013, 12 p.m.-8 p.m., and Friday, May 17, 2013, 9 a.m.-10 a.m.

An illustrated catalog for sale # 2655B is available by mail from the subscription department at 508-970-3240. It is also available at the gallery. There will be a gallery walk, led by Robin Starr, director of the Department of American & European Works of Art on Thursday, May 16th with a reception at 5:30 PM followed by a discussion of some of the auction’s highlights at 6:00 PM. Register online.

The Skinner website allows users to view all lots in the auctions, leave bids, order catalogs, and bid live in real-time through SkinnerLive!. Visit and “like” Skinner on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/skinnerauctions.

About Skinner
Skinner auctions draw international interest from buyers and consignors alike, with material regularly achieving record prices. The company’s auction and appraisal services focus on fine art, jewelry, furniture, and decorative arts from around the globe, as well as wine, fine musical instruments, rare books, clocks, Judaica, and more. Monthly Skinner Discovery auctions feature a breadth of estate material. Widely regarded as one of the most trusted names in the business, Skinner appraisers have appeared on the PBS-TV series, Antiques Roadshow, since the show’s inception. Skinner has galleries in Boston and Marlborough, Massachusetts with an international audience of bidders participating in person, by phone, and online through the SkinnerLive! online bidding platform. For more information and to read our blog, visit the website at www.skinnerinc.com, find us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/skinnerauctions, or follow us on Twitter @Skinnerinc.

Category: Auction News

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