London – A surrealist print by the enduring artist René Magritte proved to be the highlight of Roseberys auction of Modern & Contemporary Prints, Multiples & Editions on Saturday 25 April.
Roseberys Director and Head of Paintings Marcus Grey said: “Our second specialist auction of Modern & Contemporary Prints benefitted from the addition of Multiples and Editions, and we were pleased to see strong results achieved across the board. As we start to introduce more specialist sales to complement our established auction calendar we are pleased to see the market responding in such an encouraging way. ”
As one of the most fascinating and mysterious artists from the surrealist movement, Magritte sought to use ordinary objects in an extraordinary way. He challenged the viewer’s perception of reality by forcing them to look at the world from a different perspective, and give new meaning to everyday objects through his complex relationship with surrealism. “My painting is visible images which conceal nothing… they evoke mystery and indeed when one sees one of my pictures, one asks oneself this simple question ‘What does that mean’? It does not mean anything, because mystery means nothing either, it is unknowable.” Rene Magritte.
Entitled “Poire et Rose”, the print was from an edition of 150 of the 1969 suite of four etchings entitled Le Lien de Paille. The picture captures the playfulness that dominates the surrealist style, and makes Magritte’s work so sought after. It sold for £4,182 to a buyer in room. [Lot 103]
An iconic multiple by one of the world’s most famous artists, Andy Warhol came in the form of the late 1970s mixed media sculpture “Brillo Box”. The ‘Brillo Boxes’ were his first sculptural works and were exhibited in 1964 at Stable Gallery in New York. The sculptures were intended to raise questions about society’s accepted ideas about, and definitions of, “high art” using deadpan humour and pop culture imagery. They were initially met with confusion and uncertainty by the public, but the use of an everyday object challenged the historical idea of art as an aesthetically pleasing medium.
He appropriated a consumer-minded product (the cardboard boxes with real Brillo pads still inside) and elevated them into the realm of fine art sculpture. Warhol’s ‘Brillo Boxes’ took the mundane and transformed it into something thought-provoking, encouraging viewers to reassess the aesthetics found in commercialism, as well as re-evaluate their own ideas about the definition of art. The sculpture was the property of a private Italian Warhol collector and it sold to a buyer in the room for £2,952. [Lot 275]
A linocut in colour by the Swiss artist Lill Tschudi also performed well, selling to an absentee bidder for £2,829. Having established an interest in printmaking from a young age Tschudi later developed a lifelong interest in linocut as a preferred medium, producing over 300 during her career. A former student of the Grosvenor School of Modern Art, her work was exhibited in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, as well as the Osborne Samuel Gallery in London. The linocut entitled “Im Hafen” or, “In the Port” is signed and numbered 5/50 in pencil. [Lot 132]
The auction was held on Saturday 25 April 2015, and full results can be found online at www.roseberys.co.uk. Roseberys next auction of Modern & Contemporary Prints, Multiples & Editions will be held on the 21 November, and consignments are invited until Friday 16 October.