Announcing Full Speed Ahead: Sotheby’s Summer Sales Series

Announcing Full Speed Ahead: Sotheby’s Summer Sales Series

Chapters

Highlighted by Francis Bacon's large-format triptych, a Lichtenstein Brushstroke painting, the Collections of Ginny Williams and Harry W. and Mary Margaret Anderson and much much more, the Summer Sales Series brings must-see masterworks to auction in New York, London, Hong Kong, Paris, Geneva and Milan.

Global Auction Calendar

New York

Roy Lichtenstein, White Brushstroke I. Estimate $20–30 million.

26 June

29 June

30 June

Europe

Bernardo Bellotto, Dresden, a view of the moat of the Zwinger. Estimate £3,000,000–4,000,000.

LONDON

28 July

  • The disruption to the auction calendar this year has afforded the opportunity to rethink how we present our traditional Fine Art sales. In London, we will bring together the best material we have to offer from across our summer auctions of Old Masters, Impressionist & Modern, Modern British and Contemporary Art, to unite them into one cross-category live Evening sale. The new approach fits well with the outlook of new-generation collectors who collect without boundaries - across diverse categories, countries and centuries.

GENEVA

23 June

  • Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels
  • Live auction to be held in Sotheby’s galleries on Rue François-Diday, 6pm
  • Exhibition: Viewing in Sotheby’s galleries, by appointment only, 20-23 June
  • Originally scheduled for May 2020

3–16 June

PARIS

16 June

18 June

24 June

  • Art Contemporain
  • Live auction, starting at 7:00pm
  • Exhibition: 20 – 24 June
  • Originally scheduled for 5 June

25 June

PIERO MANZONI, MERDA D'ARTISTA. Estimate €120,000–180,000.

  • Originally scheduled for 28 May

MILAN

4–16 June

New York

FORMAT

While in some ways the June NY sales mark the return to business as usual, with significant offerings of high value material being brought to the market in flagship live sales, at the same time, these next New York Evening Sales have been completely reimagined.

Conducted remotely by Oliver Barker in London, the New York Impressionist & Modern and Contemporary evening sales will be live-streamed to the world. Viewers will be able to follow the auction in high-definition, with every lot accompanied by informative on-screen visuals. Bidders will be able to take part either via the phones or online in the usual way.

The auctioneer will take phone bids from Sotheby’s specialists on phone banks around the globe – in New York, Hong Kong and London – via zero-latency video streams, broadcast to giant screens in an impressive ‘control center’ studio setup.

The result will be a dynamic, truly global experience that will usher in an exciting new era of marquee auctions at Sotheby’s that marry the best of the established live auction format with the latest technology, and the modifications for safety that our current circumstances require.

EXHIBITION

All works on offer in our Contemporary Art and Impressionist & Modern Art auctions will be exhibited in our York Avenue galleries in advance of the sales. Client viewings will be available by appointment only, beginning 8 June.

FRANCIS BACON, TRIPTYCH INSPIRED BY THE ORESTEIA OF AESCHYLUS. ESTIMATE IN EXCESS OF $60 MILLION.  

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Francis Bacon’s Triptych Inspired by the Oresteia of Aeschylus (estimate in excess of $60 million). The work represents only the 6th large-format triptych ever to appear at auction, and the first to be offered since 2014. The painting was most recently on view in the Centre Pompidou’s celebrated exhibition Bacon: Books and Painting.
Clyfford Still, PH-144 (1947-Y-No.1), 1947. Estimate $25,000,000–35,000,000. From the Collection of Harry W. and Mary Margaret Anderson.

  • Property from the collection of influential West Coast collectors Harry W. and Mary Margaret Anderson (overall estimate in excess of $55 million). The group is led by Clyfford Still’s masterful 1947-Y-No.1 (estimate $25/35 million) – one of the finest work by the artist to appear at auction since Sotheby’s 2011 sales on behalf of the city of Denver to benefit the Clyfford Still Museum.
  • Roy Lichtenstein’s White Brushstroke I (estimate $20/30 million) - one of the most striking examples from Lichtenstein’s iconic series of Brushstroke paintings, which comprises 15 canvases executed in 1965-66 that are regarded as pivotal masterworks of the Pop Art movement.
  • The Ginny Williams Collection (overall estimate in excess of $50 million), including a dedicated evening sale on 29 June. Williams developed a passion for collecting Abstract Expressionist and Contemporary art, with a particular focus on the work of pioneering female modernists such as Agnes Martin, Joan Mitchell, Lee Krasner, Alice Neel, and Louise Bourgeois, whose career she impacted as both patron and friend.
  • The Clyman Fang Head (estimate $2.5/4 million) - the first work of classical African Art to be presented in a ContemporaryArt Evening Auction.

Hong Kong

FORMAT

Live auctions to be held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre on the dates above.

EXHIBITION

Public exhibitions at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre on 5–11 July.

HIGHLIGHTS

Sanyu, Quatre nus. A Highlight of the Modern Art Evening Sale in Hong Kong on 8 July.

  • An iconic masterpiece by the Chinese émigré artist Sanyu, Quatre Nus, is set to lead Sotheby’s Modern Art sale this July (estimate upon request). Paintings by Sanyu depicting a group of female nudes rarely appear on the market, not least those on a grand scale, making the emergence of this exceptional work from the artist’s later years a momentous event.
  • Another highlight is a monumental pentaptych by modern Chinese artist Chu Teh-Chun. The artist painted over 60 multi-panel paintings throughout his life, Les éléments confédérés (estimate upon request) is his only pentaptych and the largest oil painting kept in private hands.
  • Leading the Hong Kong Contemporary Art Evening Sale is David Hockney’s 30 Sunflowers from 1996 (estimate upon request). Created at a pivotal moment in both the personal life and professional career of the artist, 30 Sunflowers marks Hockney’s return to painting after a decade primarily immersed in photography. The magnificent work represents the artist’s undertaking of traditional subject matter (the still life) at the height of his powers, when he finally felt ready to face up to his artistic heroes, including Van Gogh, Monet, Vermeer, amongst others.
  • The star Asian lot from the Evening Sale is the monumental Leave Me in the Dark by Chinese artist Liu Ye (estimate HK$25,000,000–35,000,000). The painting is also one of only four documented grand scale single-panel pieces featuring a figure by Liu Ye, comparable to the artist’s current top two auction record pieces. Liu Ye returned to the same motif again in smaller dimensions but this work is far superior in terms of not just size but execution.
  • Leading our Magnificent Jewels auction are two exceptionally rare Fancy Vivid colored diamond rings - a 4.49pink (estimate: HK$65,000,000-85,000,000) and a 5.04 blue (estimate: HK$60,000,000-75,000,000), both are cut as charming heart-shapes, a particularly precious pairing.

Europe

Access details for all live auctions and exhibitions to be confirmed pending government guidelines

HIGHLIGHTS

François-Xavier Lalanne, Famille d'Hippopatames, 1992. Estimate upon request.

  • LALANNE: A one-of-a-kind design by François Xavier Lalanne. This life-size family of bronze hippopotamuses was commissioned by the owner in 1992 as an eccentric bathroom set. Offered to auction for the first time, with an estimate in the region of €2.5 million.
  • PARIS CONTEMPORARY: Pierre Soulage’s Peinture 130 x 162 cm, 14 avril 1957 - a masterpiece from a rare series of paintings, held in the same European private collection for more than a quarter of a century. Offered with an estimate of €3-5 million.
  • PARIS IMPRESSIONIST & MODERN: Paul Klee’s Abend in N (1937), held in the same private collection for 60 years (est. €2-3 million); René Magritte’s Le Temps Jadis, completed a year before the artist’s death, while he was at the peak of his career (est. €1.4-1.8 million); Rembrandt Bugatti’s life-size bronze Tigre de Sibérie, measuring almost three metres long and the first edition of this spectacular bronze to come to auction (est. €1-1.5 million).
  • MASTERWORKS OF TIME, the first-ever online auction entirely dedicated to world-class pocket watches, including one of the most comprehensive offerings of timepieces by Abraham-Louis Breguet, the father of modern watchmaking, to appear at auction. Browse catalogue here .
  • MAGNIFICENT JEWELS highlights, including a coral and diamond Cartier brooch (est. CHF 50,000 - 80,000) and a stunning pair of 1930s diamond clips (est. CHF 60,000 - 100,000) and diamond bracelet (est. CHF 100,000 - 150,000).
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