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Christie’s 20/21 June Season Celebrates the Vibrant Cultural Agenda in London


London – WEBWIRE

Paul Signac, Calanque des Canoubiers (Pointe de Bamer), Saint-Tropez (1896, estimate: £5,500,000-8,000,000)
Paul Signac, Calanque des Canoubiers (Pointe de Bamer), Saint-Tropez (1896, estimate: £5,500,000-8,000,000)

Giovanna Bertazzoni, Vice Chairman, 20th / 21st Century Art Department, Christie’s: “The vibrant summer season in London convenes collectors from across the globe as we celebrate the city’s truly unique cultural dynamism. Our 20/21 sales and exhibitions always create new dialogues between artists and movements. This year, as we celebrate the long-awaited re-opening of the National Portrait Gallery, we are delighted to join London’s many public and private institutions echoing the National Portrait Gallery’s mission and endeavour. Through the Selfhood exhibition and the Evening Sale, featuring portraiture from across the 20th and 21st centuries, we are proud to play a pivotal role in the capital’s cultural eco-system.

- Christie’s June season of 20/21 sales offers selected works that respond to the strength and energy of the market for a diverse range of artists, as recently witnessed throughout our global series of 20/21 auctions:

Calanque des Canoubiers (Pointe de Bamer), Saint-Tropez (1896, estimate, £5,500,000-8,000,000) is a leading highlight of our June season, reflecting the strong demand for Paul Signac, as seen in the record result achieved by Christie’s for Concarneau, calme du matin (Opus no. 219, larghetto) in Visionary: The Paul G. Allen Collection in New York in November of last year.

- Works by Jean-Michel Basquiat continue to ignite global interest, with his works leading Christie’s recent 20/21 sales in both New York and Hong Kong. His iconic portrait of Pablo Picasso, Untitled (Pablo Picasso) (1984), is offered with an estimate of £4,500,000-6,500,000. The painting is a representation of two masters in dialogue and a profound tribute to Picasso’s enduring legacy.

Lucian Freud’s rare early self-portrait, Portrait of a Man (Self-portrait) (1944, estimate: £1,500,000-2,000,000), its exquisite detail marking his arrival as an artist, is offered at auction for the first time, having recently been exhibited at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston.

Grünes Feld (Green Field) (1969, estimate: £4,000,000-6,000,000) is an early example of Gerhard Richter’s coloured photorealist landscapes. Contemporaneous with his celebrated Wolken (Clouds) and Seestücke (Seascapes), it captures the engagement with German Romanticism that would occupy Richter for the next two decades.

- The pioneering vision of contemporary artists continues to attract clients across the 20/21 auctions in all of our major salerooms, evident in recent record prices and above estimate performances:

Lynette Yiadom-Boakye’s Diplomacy I (2009, estimate: £1,000,000-1,500,000) was featured in the recent Tate Britain touring retrospective and is one of three works that represent her first major group compositions, including the current world record, Diplomacy III which sold for $1,950,000 at Christie’s in May 2021.

- Caroline Walker’s Recreation Pavilion (2013, estimate: £150,000-200,000) will highlight the contemporary section of the 20th / 21st Century: London Evening Sale. Her work The Puppeteerwas sold in February by Christie’s in London for £693,000 against a low estimate of £150,000.

Louis Fratino’s work saw strong demand in the May New York sales, and Listening to a conch (2017, estimate: £40,000-60,000) will be the artist’s debut in a Christie’s London Evening Sale.

Sahara Longe’s life-size Self-Portrait (2021, estimate: £40,000-60,000) is the artist’s debut in a London Evening Sale, coinciding with Longe’s first solo exhibition in the UK.

Vojtěch Kovařík’s Expulsion from Paradise (2019, estimate: £60,000-80,000) will represent the artist’s debut in a London Evening Sale. Christie’s achieved a record for the artist in New York in May. 

- In celebration of London’s National Portrait Gallery re-opening, Christie’s innovative 20/21 London June season celebrates the power of portraiture as the traditional genre is redefined by each generation of artists, across the 20th and 21st centuries:

- The 20th / 21st Century: London Evening Sale brings together intimate and insightful works that represent a survey of portraiture from 1855 to 2021. Artists include Frank AuerbachJean-Michel BasquiatLynette Yiadom-BoakyeMiriam CahnEdgar DegasLucian FreudHoward HodgkinPablo Picasso, and Sahara Longe.

- Presented alongside the auctions this season, Selfhood: Explorations of Being and Becoming in the 20th and 21st Centuriesis a curated selling exhibition focused on art as the expression of self-identity,and featuring works by artists including Tracey EminLucian FreudAlice Neel and Suzanne Valadon.

- Christie’s is the leading auction house for private collections globally, and our June season features exquisite works from: The Collection of Thomas and Doris Ammann; Living Through Art: An Important Private Collection; Property from the Collection of Dr. Jerome and Mrs. Elizabeth Levy; Property from the Zieseniss Collection; and A Century of Art: The Gerald Fineberg Collection.

- Museum-quality works that have never been offered at auction before continue to resonate with collectors across all of our salerooms. Gerhard Richter’s Grünes Feld (Green Field) (1969, estimate: £4,000,000-6,000,000), which has been held in a private German collection since 1975, and Pablo Picasso’s Tête de femme (1921, estimate: £700,000-1,000,000) from the Berggruen Family Collection, where it has remained since 1976, are both highlights of the Evening Sale following long-term loans to prestigious European museums.

About Christie’s

Founded in 1766, Christie’s is a world-leading art and luxury business. Renowned and trusted for its expert live and online auctions, as well as its bespoke private sales, Christie’s offers a full portfolio of global services to its clients, including art appraisal, art financing, international real estate and education. Christie’s has a physical presence in 46 countries, throughout the Americas, Europe, Middle East, and Asia Pacific, with flagship international sales hubs in New York, London, Hong Kong, Paris and Geneva. It also is the only international auction house authorized to hold sales in mainland China (Shanghai).

Christie’s auctions span more than 80 art and luxury categories, at price points ranging from $200 to over $100 million. Christie’s has sold 8 of the 10 most important single-owner collections in history, including the Paul G. Allen Collection—the most valuable collection ever offered at auction (November 2022). In recent years, Christie’s has achieved the world record price for an artwork at auction (Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, 2017), for a 20th century artwork (Andy Warhol’s Shot Sage Blue Marilyn, 2022) and for a work by a living artist (Jeff Koons’ Rabbit, 2019). 

Christie’s Private Sales offers a seamless service for buying and selling art, jewellery and watches outside of the auction calendar, working exclusively with Christie’s specialists at a client’s individual pace.

Recent innovations at Christie’s include the groundbreaking sale of the first NFT for a digital work of art ever offered at a major auction house (Beeple’s Everydays, March 2021), with the unprecedented acceptance of cryptocurrency as a means of payment. As an industry leader in digital innovation, Christie’s also continues to pioneer new technologies that are redefining the business of art, including use of hologram technology to tour life-size 3D objects around the world, and the creation of viewing and bidding experiences that integrate augmented reality, global livestreaming, buy-now channels, and hybrid sales formats. 

Christie’s is dedicated to advancing responsible culture throughout its business and communities worldwide, including achieving sustainability by reducing our carbon emissions by 50% and pledging to be net zero by 2030, and actively using its platform in the art world to amplify under-represented voices and support positive change.

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