Contemporary Curated
Live Auction: 2 October 2020 • 10:00 AM & 2:00 PM EDT • New York

Contemporary Curated 2 October 2020 • 10:00 AM EDT • New York

S otheby’s is pleased to announce highlights from this season’s Contemporary Curated auction in New York, with co-curators Virgil Abloh, Chief Creative Director and Founder of Off-White and Men’s Artistic Director at Louis Vuitton, and Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer Daimler Group. A highlight of the sale will be Project Geländewagen, the first outcome of the collaboration between Mercedes-Benz and Abloh, in which a special, one-of-a-kind Mercedes-Benz maquette will be auctioned for charity.

This October’s sale features an exceptional array of works spanning postwar to contemporary art, anchored by many of the leading artists that defined and continue to influence these periods: Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland, Barkley L. Hendricks, Gerhard Richter, Ruth Asawa, and amongst many more. The sale features property from significant collections, including The Collector’s Eye: Property from the Collection Dr. M. Wallace and Mrs. Faega Friedman, which brings together works from Color Field painting, the Bay Area Figurative Movement, and their antecedents in Abstract Expressionism, and embodies a standard of excellence in Postwar Art; as well as Groundbreaking: Works from the Collection of Joseph & Blanche Blank, which features two masterworks by Romare Bearden, a seminal 1960s gouache by Jacob Lawrence, and spans sculpture, collage and painting, showcasing the daringness of the collection. Additionally, we are proud to be auctioning two additional charitable sequences in support of Choice Works by Planned Parenthood and the New York High Line. The sale also features an exemplary assortment of Latin American post-war and Contemporary artists, ranging from Fernando Botero to Carlos Cruz-Diez.

Auction Highlights

Meet Our Curators Learn More
"Art Surrounds Us": Virgil Abloh & Gorden Wagener Discuss Innovation, Inspiration and Creative Collaboration
Learn More about Project Geländewagen Discover

In addition to this special art piece by Abloh and Wagner, our Curator’s Selects by Barkley L. Hendricks, Rashid Johnson, Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland and Gerhard Richter are available here for advance viewing.

Inspired by Sensual Purity—the Aesthetic Soul of Mercedes-Benz
Works Sold to Benefit the High Line | Lots 210-214
Choiceworks: Lots 219-233
Property from a Private Collection
Sotheby’s is honored to offer Property from a Private Collection in the October 2 Contemporary Curated Sale, a studied and refined, yet irreverent and daring collection of works. Led by a rare assembly of important Joseph Cornell collages, the Private Collection also features a duo of intimate and seminal Jean Dubuffet works on paper, including El Golea which was recently shown at the Morgan Library and Museum in the Dubuffet Drawings 1935-1962 exhibition, as well as a comprehensive survey of the painting of celebrated Chicago Imagist Ed Paschke. Unbound by geography and movement, the group instead speaks to a love for artists who follow individual paths outside of the stylistic mainstream, representing a rare opportunity to acquire early, important works by some of the twentieth-century’s most trailblazing creative thinkers.

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

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. 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, starting with the October 2 Contemporary Curated Sale in New York.

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