Home LifeStyle  Arts & Culture $12 Million Basquiat on Offer at Christie's

$12 Million Basquiat on Offer at Christie's

Posted: Nov. 4th, 2009  |  By JustLuxe Team
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Arts & Culture: An epic masterpiece by Jean-Michel Basquiat, the highlight of the season's major art auctions, is estimated to fetch up to $12 million stars in Christie's highly anticipated Post-War and Contemporary Art sale in New York on November 10. Brother Sausage (detail above), painted in 1983 and featured on the cover of Basquiat's catalogue raisonné, is a cartoon strip-like composition of six panels hinged together to form a narrative frieze of multiple drawings and Xeroxed overlays; each laden with themes of racial inequality and prejudice, wealth and corporate greed in a fame and consumer-obsessed American.

Christie's notes the work is "steeped in Basquiat's signature style, raw energy and ingenious, loaded layering," exemplifying Basquiat at the pinnacle of his career. Also included in the auction, which many will be watching closely to see how prices bear up, are two seminal paintings from Andy Warhol's pivotal Death and Disaster series, as well as important works by Donald Judd, Jeff Koons, Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns. Warhol's Tunafish Disaster, painted in 1963, is estimated at $6 - $8 million, while Koons' Large Vase of Flowers from 1991 is expected to fetch $4 - $6 million. Comprised of 47 lots, the auction is expected to realize in the region of $65 - $95 million in total.

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2 Comments on this Article

Basquiat Bloger commented on November 11, 2009

Christie's Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale of November 10th ended up bringing in a total of 74,151,500. The highest priced work was a 1996 painting by Peter Doig, who continues his rise. His work "Reflection (What does your soul look like)" sold for $10,162,500 (including premium), close to twice its estimate. Jeff Koons' horrendous 1991 "large vase of flowers" came in on estimate ($4,000,000 - $6,000,000) at $5,682,500. While Basquiat's ȫrother's Sausage" ʎstimate 9-12 million) did not sell, his large untitled drawing ʎstimate $1,800,000 - $2,800,000) brought in $3,106,500. This was more than the exquisite de Kooning drawing "Two Women II" displayed next to it--sold within estimate for $1,930,500. Confirming the influence of current events on prices, Warhol's ghastly "Micheal Jackson" sold over estimate for $812,500, while his historic 1963 "Tuna Fish Disaster" ʎstimated 6-8 million) did not sell. Important Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns works from the collectio

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BasquiatBlogger commented on November 11, 2009

Update: the "epic masterpiece" did not reach its estimate of 9 to 12 million. The work was one of several large multi-panel works done in 1983 incorporating William Burrough's "cut-up" technique (the panels were shuffled randomly before being hinged together). In its various panels, Brother's Sausage plays with elements of Neo-Dada use of chance, Pop Art use of everyday commercial imagery, socially conscious comment, and the Post-Minimalist use of grid structure, serialization and reproduction, as well as the Neo-Expressionist gestural figuration he was known for. But displayed next to a de Kooning women in the Christie's gallery, it was also obvious that use of the paintbrush was not Basquiat's strength at this time. While the painting did not sell, two major Basquiat drawings at the sale sold for significantly over there estimates. For more information see the Basquiat blog at http://sites.google.com/site/basquiatbiography/news.

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