Sunday, January 13, 2013

Swann Galleries African-American Fine Art Auction: Sale 2303

The upcoming African-American Fine Art Sale 2203 at Swann Auction Galleries is scheduled for Thursday, February 14, 2013. For Swann Galleries, this auction marks the fourteenth sale, over the past several years, that has had an African-American art focus. Sale 2303 includes many works by artists who rose to prominence in the 1960s and 70s, including Barkley Hendricks and William T. Williams, among others. Nigel Freeman, Director of African American Fine Art at Swann Auction Galleries, noted that Swann, "in addition to being the only auction house to feature regular sales of African American Fine Art, stands out as a leader in the sale of material by this 'Second Generation' of artists, who followed the Harlem Renaissance."

As in the past, the sale will include paintings, sculptures, and prints. Highlights include Barkley Hendricks’ The Hawk, Blah, Blah, Blah, a painting from the artist’s first solo show in 1971. It has an estimate of $75,000 – $100,000.

Barkley L. Hendricks, The Hawk, Blah, Blah, Blah, Oil and Dayglo on canvas, 1970.
Image: Swann Auction Galleries

William T. Williams' Up Balls, an acrylic on canvas, a bold composition from 1971 has an estimate of $75,000 –  $100,000. It is only the second painting by the artist to come to auction; see Eastern Star, the artist's first painting in auction, that appeared in Sale 2268 (Lot 141, February 16, 2012, sold for $120,000). 

William T. Williams, Up Balls, Acrylic on canvas, 1971. Image: Swann Auction Galleries


This African-American Fine Art sale also features a significant group of works sold by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston for the benefit of the collection, including works by Charles Alston, Richmond Barth√©, Beauford Delaney, Norman Lewis, Laura Wheeler Waring, and Charles White. A sample from this collection includes Meeting Place by Norman Lewis and Trumpet Player by Charles White. Meeting Place which is the first Norman Lewis WPA-era oil painting to come to auction has an estimate of $150,000 – $200,000. Charles White’s Trumpet Player, a 1959-1960 charcoal and gouache drawing, has an auction estimate of $100,000 – $150,000. Images of Meeting Place and Trumpet Player follow.

Norman Lewis, Meeting Place, Oil on canvas, 1941. Image: Swann Auction Galleries


Charles White, Trumpet Player, 
Charcoal and gouache on board, 1959-60
Image: Swann Auction Galleries 

Sale 2303 will close with an exceptional group of prints by the late Elizabeth Catlett that includes a scarce, complete set of the 14 linoleum cuts that are a part of the I am the Black Woman series. This is the first time that the complete group has appeared in auction, and they have an auction estimate of $75,000 - $100,000. 

Here is the link to the online version of the catalogue for the upcoming African-American Fine Art Sale 2303.  

As a reminder regarding bidding information, you do not have to be present at the auction to bid. Bids may be placed in advance via telephone, fax, mail, or email, and Swann's staff will bid on your behalf if you can not attend the sale in-person. Also, you may make advance arrangements to bid live by telephone during the auction. To make bidding arrangements, contact Swann Galleries at 212-254-4710.   

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