AL HELD | NECTARIUS II
1928 - 2005
signed and dated 87 on the reverse
acrylic on canvas
84¼ by 60½ in. (213.7 by 153.7 cm.)
This work is in very good condition overall. There is a minute stable crack with an associated raised surface in the brown passage in the upper left quadrant and a pinpoint accretion to the central red passage, both visible under close inspection. There is a hairline scratch in the purple passage in the upper right quadrant, visible upon close inspection. There are two minute accretions to the lower right quadrant, visible under raking light that fluoresce under ultraviolet light. There is a fine layer of dust on the surface. Under ultraviolet light inspection, there is no evidence of restoration. Unframed.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.
Al Held was an Abstract Expressionist painter best known for his large-scale Hard-edge paintings, with the present work being an example from this series. The ‘Hard-edge’ paintings are marked by abrupt transitions between color areas, with each area typically a single, unvarying color. This school of painting bears relation to Op Art, Color Field painting and Geometric abstraction. While it is this body of work for which Al Held is most recognized, he nonetheless underwent numerous stylistic changes throughout his career. All the while, he remained independent from the crosscurrents of artistic movement at these respective stages. Held’s works are in the collections of Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco; Tate, London; and the Kunstmuseum, Basel.