Contemporary Art

Contemporary Art

View full screen - View 1 of Lot 513. DOROTHY DEHNER | SEPTENARIUS.

Ground Breaking: Works from the Collection of Joseph & Blanche Blank


Lot Closed

October 6, 04:11 PM GMT


18,000 - 25,000 USD

Lot Details


Ground Breaking: Works from the Collection of Joseph & Blanche Blank


1901 - 1994


i. incised with the artist's signature and date 59 on the base

ii. incised with the artist's signature and date 59 on the side

cast bronze, in two parts

i. 22½ by 13½ by 8 in. (57.1 by 34.3 by 20.3 cm.)

ii. 22 by 15 by 9 in. (55.9 by 38.1 by 22.9 cm.)

Executed in 1959, this work is unique. 

William Doyle Gallery, New York

Sid Deutsch Gallery, New York

Nardin Fine Arts, Cross River, NY (acquired in 1992)

Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1993

Groundbreaking and visionary, the collection of Mr. And Mrs. Joseph Blank charts a singular path in Postwar art. With an expert eye, the couple acquired deep holdings of artists outside of the contemporary mainstream, focusing primarily on three-dimensional works and important works by Black artists, long before the broader market had grown to appreciate them. On their waterfront estate in New York, the couple lived on grounds peppered with expressive, masterfully constructed sculpture by the likes of Melvin Edwards, while inside their home, socially engaged and formally innovative works by Jacob Lawrence flanked their walls. Unmoored from a single style or movement, the Blanks collected with total freedom, living with sculpture by Elizabeth Catlett, George Rickey and Joel Shapiro, and forming myriad threads between abstract and figurative works as well as painting and sculpture. The couple also approached their collecting with a rare rigor and seriousness, acquiring masterworks by Romare Bearden, including Card Players and Untitled (Church), which are embedded with enduring cultural, art historical and social references that remain undiminished in their salience, beauty and visceral impact. More than anything, a daringness in approaching the new and an enthusiasm for the objects, cultures, and points of view of the artists in their home define the collection. Sotheby’s is honored to present the collection of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Blank.