Sotheby’s is delighted to announce the auction of Pacific Art from the Collection of Harry A. Franklin, to be presented alongside the major auctions of Contemporary Art and Impressionist and Modern Art at Sotheby’s newly-renovated New York headquarters in May.
Harry A. Franklin was a pioneer in his field, as one of the first to champion the Art of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas in California as he promoted this art to a new audience of West Coast American collectors in the postwar period. Franklin’s collection has had a long association with Sotheby’s, having made auction history in 1990 with the record-breaking sale of his African collection at Sotheby’s New York.
Harry A. Franklin’s impressive collection of Pacific Art has been kept in the Franklin family since his passing in the early 1980s, and includes a deep selection of sculpture from the ancient island cultures of Oceania including works from New Zealand and the Polynesian islands, and Melanesia, particularly Papua New Guinea. Notably this includes a number of works which Harry Franklin acquired directly in the legendary 1966 auction of the collection of Helena Rubinstein at Sotheby Parke Bernet in New York. The appearance of the Franklin Collection at auction represents a rare opportunity for collectors to acquire pieces which have not been seen on the art market in half a century.