Press Release

Sotheby's Hong Kong Announces Contemporary Art Spring Sales July 2020

By Sotheby's
HIGHEST VALUED CONTEMPORARY ART SALES AT SOTHEBY'S ASIA

UNPRECEDENTED DIVERSITY OF WESTERN & ASIAN WORKS

HEADLINED BY IMPORTANT MASTERPIECES BY DAVID HOCKNEY & LIU YE
David Hockney, 30 Sunflowers, 1996
Liu Ye, Leave Me in the Dark, 2008

AUCTIONS
Hall 1, Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
9 July
Contemporary Art Evening Sale
10 July
Contemporary Art Day Sale

PREVIEW EXHIBITIONS
27 – 28 June (By Appointment) | Taipei
5 – 10 July | Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre

Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Spring 2020 Sales, scheduled for 9 – 10 July 2020 in Hong Kong, will present a highly curated selection of distinguished works by Western and Asian artists. Led by important masterpieces by David Hockney and Liu Ye, the Evening Sale showcases an international line-up of works by blue-chip Western artists alongside the most prominent Asian names, including Clyfford Still, Albert Oehlen, Kazuo Shiraga, Yayoi Kusama and Yoshitomo Nara, amongst many others. Offered across the Evening and Day Sales is “The Art of Life: Property from a Distinguished Asian Private Collector and Important Patron of the Arts”, a superlative selection of art, design and sculptural pieces. Led by illustrious works by François-Xavier Lalanne and Antony Gormley, the eclectic group also includes quality works by reputable Asian talents Suh Doho, Yang Haegue, and Lee Kit, amongst others.

With a total estimate exceeding HK$480 million / US$60 million, the Spring 2020 season marks the highest valued Contemporary Art sales at Sotheby’s in Asia.

Sotheby’s Hong Kong’s definitive leading position in the Contemporary Art market is evidenced by our exceptional results in Asia. This July, we are gratified to present a rich assemblage of Contemporary Art with unprecedented diversity – from Western masterworks to top quality Asian pieces. In these challenging times, Sotheby’s is committed to continue to bring only the best to clients around the world, and to nurture growing appetite and passions surrounding the genre of Contemporary Art.
Yuki Terase, Head of Contemporary Art, Asia of Sotheby’s

TOP TIER WORKS BY BLUE-CHIP WESTERN NAMES

David Hockney, 30 Sunflowers
1996, oil on canvas, 182.9 by 182.9 cm
Estimate Upon Request

Created at a pivotal point in David Hockney’s career, 30 Sunflowers from 1996 is a singular masterpiece marking his return to painting after a decade primarily immersed in photography. The radiant and poignant still life represents Hockney’s undertaking of traditional subject matter at the height of his powers, in encounter with historical masters such as Van Gogh, Cézanne, Monet and Vermeer. Unseen in the market for almost a decade, the work encapsulates the quintessence of Hockney’s mature artistic output. (More details in press release.)

CLICK HERE TO WATCH VIDEO.

Clyfford Still, PH-306
1946-1947, oil on canvas, 136.5 by 71.2 cm
Est. HK$54,000,000 – 84,000,000 / US$7,000,000 – 10,800,000

Formerly in the collection of Clyfford Still’s daughter, Sandra Still, PH-306 from 1946-1947 is a representative work from the artist’s transitional period in the 1940s. The work is emblematic of Still’s aesthetic shift towards the fragmentary and the abstract, pitting radiance against blackness in a symbolic struggle. The painting is dated over two years, signalling a noteworthy shift in the artist’s artistic evolution. Still personally gifted this painting to his cherished daughter Sandra in 1976 to grace the wall of her Manhattan apartment, reflecting this work’s particular significance to the artist.

(More details in the catalogue note penned by Dr David Anfam, leading authority on American Abstract Expressionism and curator of “Abstract Expressionism” held at the Royal Academy of Arts in 2017.)

Albert Oehlen, Die Pfeifenden von (The Whistlers of)
2001, oil and spray enamel on canvas, 280 by 340.5 cm
Est. HK$14,000,000 – 24,000,000 / US$1,800,000 – 3,100,000

A vivid and energetic profusion of psychedelic colour and gestural movement, Albert Oehlen’s Die Pfeifenden von (The Whistlers of) is a strikingly robust large-scale painting that deftly captures the artist’s idiosyncratic practice. Executed in 2001, the monumental painting signifies Oehlen’s shift to large-scale abstraction.

Richard Prince, Untitled (Cowboy)
2001, colour coupler print, 59.1 by 39.4cm
Est. HK$2,200,000 – 4,200,000 / US$280,000 – 540,000

With its iconic imagery, Untitled (Cowboy) is symbolic of Richard Prince’s career-long investigation into the motif of the American cowboy. To this day, the silhouette serves as an icon for the “Marlboro Man” and his legacy rooted in national pride and cultural identity.

WORKS BY PROMINENT CHINESE MASTERS

Liu Ye, Leave Me in the Dark
2008, acrylic on canvas, 219.7 by 299.7 cm
Est. HK$25,000,000 - 35,000,000 / US$3,200,000 - 4,500,000

Fresh to market from one private collection since 2008, Leave Me in the Dark is an epic masterpiece – one of only four large-scale single-panel figurative paintings by the artist. The other three are Smoke and Sword, the current top 2 auction record works by Liu Ye; and Gun in the M+ Sigg Collection. After creating the present work, Liu Ye returned to the motif in 2009 and 2010 in much smaller dimensions, demonstrating the importance of this incipient piece. Exuding a transcendent aura, this is an epochal paradigm exemplifying the best of Liu Ye’s acclaimed visual lexicon.

Moutarderie nationale: the gillion crowet collection
Yue Minjun, Goldfish
1993, oil on canvas, 180 by 247 cm
Est. HK$ 2,000,000 – 3,000,000 / US$260,000 – 390,000

Executed in 1993, Goldfish is an early and archetypal example of Yue Minjun’s celebrated Cynical Realism lexicon featuring the iconic Golden Water Bridge in front of Tiananmen Square. Yue’s iconic imagery, featuring his maniacally laughing surrogate selves, was crucial to the rise of Chinese Contemporary art in the 1990s.

Moutarderie nationale: the gillion crowet collection
Fang Lijun, 2002.1.1
2002, oil on canvas, in four parts, overall: 400 by 706 cm
Est. HK$ 3,000,000 – 5,000,000 / US$390,000 – 650,000

2002.1.1 is a monumental Fang Lijun masterwork featuring his most iconic iconography: flowers and bald heads. Fang’s signature stylized works prompted the eminent critic Li Xianting to name Fang Lijun as the primary proponent of Cynical Realism in the early 1990s.

JAPANESE POSTWAR & CONTEMPORARY: EMINENT WORKS

Kazuo Shiraga, Chitaisei Honkōshin
1960, oil on canvas, 130 by 162 cm
Est. HK$ 22,000,000 – 32,000,000 / US$2,800,000 – 4,100,000

This exhilarating canvas hails from Kazuo Shiraga’s most celebrated Water Margin series, exuding raw vigour and violence. The Gutai master’s feet-generated strokes thrash out swipes of crimson, deep burgundy and turquoise. Today the significance of Shiraga’s ground-breaking work is recognised as one of the leading voices of his generation, not just in Asia but worldwide.

Sadamasa Motonaga, Work
1964, oil on canvas, 91 by 73 cm
Est. HK$ 3,500,000 – 5,500,000 / US$450,000 – 710,000

Executed in 1964, Work epitomises the magnificent worlds Sadamasa Motonaga created during his pivotal early Gutai period from the 1950s to mid-1960s. Evoking cosmic planets, riverbeds and volcanic magma, this iconic aesthetic involves a specific method in which the artist laid his canvases on the floor and tilted them in different angles to allow poured mixtures of pigments to “flow” and “pool” in different speeds.

Yoshitomo Nara, Keep Your Chin Up
2001, acrylic on canvas, 193.5 by 259.3 cm
Est. HK$ 18,000,000 – 28,000,000 / US$2,300,000 – 3,600,000

Exceptionally rare in composition and expansive in scale, Yoshitomo Nara’s Keep Your Chin Up from 2001 features a portrait in profile – a singularly special painting from the artist’s oeuvre. Fresh to market, this superlative work was exhibited in numerous important Nara museum exhibitions. Rendered in flawless execution, the radiant little sailor girl is empowered, optimistic and hopeful, encapsulating the visual lexicon of one of the most renowned living painters of our time.

“THE ART OF LIFE: PROPERTY FROM A DISTINGUISHED ASIAN PRIVATE COLLECTOR AND IMPORTANT PATRON OF THE ARTS”

“The Art of Life” presents a diverse collection assembled by a distinguished Asian private collector and patron of the arts, whose broad vision, dedicated efforts and generosity have driven significant development in the art scene in Asia. The selection - unconfined by genre, medium or style - encompasses paintings, sculptures and photography, as well as cutting-edge design, furniture and decorative pieces. To be offered across Evening and Day Sales.

HIGHLIGHTS FROM CONTEMPORARY ART DAY SALE

IMAGE DOWNLOAD

DROPBOX: https://bit.ly/3hdpS8r

TENCENT CLOUD: https://share.weiyun.com/b8AgByOI

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