Ad Reinhardt Abstract Painting Headlines Heritage Auction

Untitled (Blue-Purple Painting), 1952, Ad Reinhardt’s minimalist masterwork, is expected to bring $1 million as part of a 370-lot Modern & Contemporary Art Signature Auction May 31 at Heritage. Works by giants ranging from Jasper Johns, Andy Warhol, and Robert Rauschenberg and sculpture by Fernando Botero, Joan Miró and François-Xavier Lalanne, among others, will be offered in Dallas and online at

The auction is the first for the venue in 2014 and comes on the heels of Heritage’s April 23 $1.2 million 20th & 21st Century Design Auction and the firm’s nearly $4 million sales of Modern & Contemporary Art in November 2013.

Known for his geometric paintings, Reinhardt’s Untitled (Blue-Purple Painting), 1952, is an excellent example from the artist’s celebrated monochrome abstractions. The work is a model combination of varying hues and a masterwork by the pioneer of conceptual and minimal art. It was acquired by the late Ethel Epstein, an art collector and a founder of the New York Studio School and the Washington D.C. Gallery of Modern Art. Epstein’s husband, Henry, served as a New York State Supreme Court Justice while Mrs. Epstein served as the labor secretary under New York mayor LaGuardia.