At Large  November 1, 2018

Segal, Haring, and Calder Works Lead Bonhams Post-War & Contemporary Art Sale

Courtesy Bonhams

George Segal (American, 1924-2000), The Dancers, circa 1971-1982, bronze. Estimate: $700,000-1,000,000.

New York – Bonhams announces highlights of the Post-War & Contemporary Art sale on November 14, which will offer a total of 44 works featuring exceptional sculptures by George Segal, Keith Haring, and Alexander Calder. All works will be on view to the public at Bonhams New York galleries starting November 9.

Leading the sale is George Segal’s The Dancers, circa 1971-1982, a defining work of both the artist's career and twentieth-century sculpture (estimate: $700,000-1,000,000). This life-size sculpture is a supreme example of Segal's practice, exemplifying his skills as a sculptor while also forging a poignant narrative. Other examples from the edition are housed within the permanent collections of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC and The Museo de Arte Contemporaneo, Caracas leaving only three works from the limited edition in private hands. The Dancers retains the visual effect of cast figures delicately wrapped in plaster, yet the sculpture is actually rendered in solid, hard bronze. Segal began working with this material from 1971 and The Dancers is one of the artist's earliest examples in this medium.

    Courtesy Bonhams

    Keith Haring (American, 1958-1990), Mother and Child, 1986, painted aluminum. Estimate: $600,000-800,000.

    Another highlight is Mother and Child by Keith Haring, 1986 (estimate: $600,000-800,000), which comes to auction for the first time from an esteemed private collection. Haring is considered to be one of the most pioneering, innovative and significant artists of the twentieth century. He began experimenting with large outdoor sculptures later in his career and they became immediately iconic and recognizable features in cities, parks and institutions around the world. Haring created only a few large scale sculptural works before his sudden and untimely death in 1990 from AIDS.Mother and Child is a monumental work forged in aluminum that employs the motif of Madonna and Christ in early Christian iconography. Though the artist abstracts the figures, stripping them of identifying features and even gender, the instantly recognizable form of a mother swinging her small infant in play is unmistakable.

      Courtesy Bonhams

      Alexander Calder (American, 1898-1976), Red, Black and Blue (American Airlines Maquette), 1968. Estimate: $500,000-700,000.

      Another work coming to auction for the first time is Alexander Calder’s Red, Black and Blue (American Airlines Maquette), 1968 (estimate: $500,000-700,000). Elegantly arranged in a continuous and ever-changing dance, this is an exquisite and a seminal work by the pioneering artist. The work is a strong example of Calder's singular sense of elegance combined with his lively spontaneity to create a mesmerizing and harmonious mobile. The present work was created as a maquette for the monumental Red, Black, Blue, 1968, which was commissioned by American Airlines in Dallas and completed in 1973 now residing on long term loan at the Milwaukee Art Museum.

      Additional highlights include:

      • Jean Dubuffet (French, 1901-1985), Mangeur à la fourchette, 1952 (estimate: $250,000-350,000), a startling portrait of a figure from a seminal period for the artist, one which saw him experimenting with new media and techniques.
      • Andy Warhol (American, 1928-1987), Dollar Sign, 1982 (estimate: $300,000-500,000), one of the artist’s most widely recognized and important subjects which demonstrate Warhol’s undeniably unique ability to both subvert and glorify his subject.