Records & Results: Contemporary Art

Abstract Attractions


We offered nearly 400 works by some of the twentieth century’s greatest innovators in our May 22 auction of Contemporary Art. Abstract works ruled the day, with only three of the top 20 lots denoting a figural image.


Top Lot: Portfolio by Barbara Hepworth



Lot 264: Barbara Hepworth, Opposing Forms, complete portfolio with 12 color lithographs, 1969-70. Sold May 22, 2018 for $40,000.


Topping the auction was Barbara Hepworth’s complete portfolio, Opposing Forms, 1969-70. Each of the 12 signed color lithographs features the recognizable “pierced form” style most often seen in her three-dimensional work. The portfolio sold for $40,000, above a high estimate of $30,000.


Op Art 



Lot 339: Victor Vasarely, Majus II, polystyrene, 1974. Sold May 22, 2018 for $13,750.


All 12 works in the auction by 1970s Op Art practitioner Victor Vasarely found buyers. The highlight was the mesmerizing polystyrene multiple Majus II, 1974, which sold to a collector for $13,750, above a high estimate of $8,000. Another polystyrene multiple from the same year, Zoeld (Blue/Green), realized $12,500.



Lot 151: Paul Sharits, Isla de Espiritu Santo, Baja, 1981, and Yelapa, 1982, pen and inks. Sold May 22, 2018 for $7,000.


Original works by Paul Sharits performed well, with a set of two of his iconic line drawings inspiring a bidding war, settling at $7,000, above a high estimate of $5,000.



New York Artists



Lot 366: Rene Ricard, Tomorrow’s Another Day…, acrylic on canvas, 2001. Sold May 22, 2018 for $15,000.


Two original canary-yellow acrylic paintings by Rene Ricard, a protégé of Andy Warhol, far exceeded their high estimates. Tomorrow’s Another Day…, 2011, reached $15,000, above a high estimate of $9,000, while With Lipstick 25¢, 2011, shot up to $23,750 above a high estimate of $10,000.



Lot 241: Keith Haring, Ludo, complete portfolio with 5 color lithographs, 1985. Sold May 22, 2018 for $37,500, a record for the work.

The sale was notable for several auction records for works by marquee artists. Keith Haring’s portfolio Ludo, 1985, with five color lithographs, sold to a collector for a record $37,500. Another record was achieved for Cicada, 1981, the iconic color lithograph by Jasper Johns, at $36,400, above a high estimate of $22,000. The elegant black and yellow Lithographie 38, 1975, by Pierre Soulages, was another record at $15,000.


Next Contemporary Art Auction: November 15

Consignment Deadline: August 31