Los Angeles Modern Auctions welcomes the new season with their much anticipated Fall auction on October 9th with remarkable lots both from Fine Arts and Design departments. LAMA’s founder Peter Loughrey will return to the auction room for this exciting sale, with highlights by Ed Ruscha, Andy Warhol and Ad Reinhardt along with many others.
The curated auction will represent some of the most coveted examples of abstract artwork currently leading the modern art space, including Jade by Helen Frankenthaler. The intimate 1976 acrylic painting will lead the auction as the top lot in the sale, with an estimated sales price of $300-500,000. The work carries Frankenthaler’s signature balance of control and spontaneity, making clear allusions to nature and emphatically demonstrating her facility with acrylics. The artist was often inspired by encounters with nature and, reminiscent of a foaming sea and muddy shore, Jade makes clear allusions to landscape.
Unconventional media by Ed Ruscha:
LAMA Director and art personality Peter Loughrey’s personal favourites, Ed Ruscha’s Crescent Heights Becomes Laurel Canyon (2000), an acrylic on raw linen, and Eight Trembling Individuals (1977), a blackberry juice on paper, are certainly the superstars in this auction.
Eight Trembling Individuals (1977) was produced during a period in which Ruscha had temporarily abandoned painting. Ruscha explained this period by saying “”For a whole year I couldn’t paint. It was 1970 and I didn’t do any painting… And so ‘staining’ came out of that. Instead of applying a skin of paint to a canvas support, I would stain the surface, so it was another way out of this box I’d painted myself into. I was in a corner and this was the most logical thing, and it involved the concept of liquids.” This period resulted in a range of radical experiments, including the use of such unconventional materials as chocolate, lettuce, egg yolk, blood, and in this case, blackberry juice, in his works. Ruscha’s incorporation of unusual media suggests a revolt against the strictures of traditional painting. The painting was acquired directly from the artist in 1978 by the L.A based collector who last owned it and it is the first time this work is ever in the secondary market.
For Design Enthusiasts:
The October sale at LAMA offers a versatile selection of design objects among which Frank Gehry’s Untitled (1987–1988) sculpture caught our eye. Epitome of architectural genius, Frank Gehry is the creator behind many iconic contemporary buildings such as the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. He once said ““I think the blurring of the lines between art and architecture has got to happen.” His playful style is clearly visible in this sculpture featuring a rough lead fish sculpture, a recurrent theme for Gehry, defying physics by seemingly floating on water-looking glass in a white bathtub.
A Selection for Every Budget:
As usual, established modern art and design auction house LA Modern Auctions offers a wide selection both for affluent and experience collectors and new starters. While some of the lots, as seen above, are higher on the price scale, there is a tangible selection for newer collectors with a more limited budget. Auction houses with a focus, who organize sales like this are the perfect places to start one’s collection. For example, this color lithograph by Swiss artist Jean Tinguely (1925-1991), “Meta-Meta/Roto-Zaza” is a great example of the Dada Movement and could be a great start of an interesting art collection. To read more about our tips for beginner art collectors, check out our article “How to Kickstart an Art Collection – A Beginner’s Guide”.
Photos courtesy of Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA).