Bloomsbury London Modern Prints Sale

Bloomsbury’s latest offering of 20th Century Prints is an impressive, bumper (612 lots) two day sale (4th- 5th December), consisiting of Modern British Prints, William Greengrass and the Artists of the Grosvenor School, the Curwen Press, Continental Prints, Urban Prints and Pop Prints.

Each section has its highlights, but the focal point of the sale must be the unique Andy Warhol silkscreen printed in colours of Eva Mudocci, the English violinist and Edvard Munch’s lover (lot 607), whose image became the basis for one of his most iconic works, The Madonna. Warhol ‘appropriated’ the portrait and reworked it in his own style giving it a twentieth century flavour; it has the Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board rubber stamp and is estimated £70000-90000. Another important element of the sale is a completely fresh to the market, private collection of prints from Atelier 17, the leading avant garde print studio in Paris and New York in the 1920s-1980s. The focus is on a selection of prints and unique proofs by the creator and founder of the studio, Stanley William Hayter. Particularly noteworthy is lot 184, Hayter’s first complete published portfolio Paysage Urbains (estimated £3000-5000) which illustrates his ground-breaking forays into surrealism.

Other exciting pieces in the sale include Hotel Acatlan: First Day (from the moving focus series), a large signed and dated Hockney lithograph (lot 548) printed in vibrant colours (£18000-22000). Bridget Riley’s Elongated Triangles (lot 128) is an extremely rare complete set of silkscreens printed in colours, produced to raise funds for the artist’s retrospective of 1971 and this set of five, is estimated £10000-15000. Amongst the Picassos in the Continental Prints section is the charming, signed etching with aquatint 1952 La Poule (lot 381) estimated £12000-15000. Here too, is a book of fifteen lithographs, Le Lezard aux Plumes d’Or (lot 352), watermarked Miro, the full sheets, loose in the original vellum boards and grey linen covered solander box (estimate £10000-15000).

This sale can honestly boast numerous fresh to the market or unique items, the works by William Greengrass of the Grosvenor School include 10 such lino cuts and sketches. Another unusual aspect of the sale is the celebration of 50 years of the Curwen Press, and Bloomsbury Auctions is delighted to offer works to benefit the Curwen Studio, which was formed in 1958 and which specialised in high quality limited edition books and the advanced use of colour lithography.

Auction info