Gerhard Richter – Grün Blau Rot 789-5

Gerhard Richter, KAWS, Tracey Emin, Keith Haring, Sarah Lucas, Julian Opie, Jim Shaw and Tom Wesselmann: London on 8 December - Phillips

Featuring Works by Gerhard Richter, KAWS, Tracey Emin, Keith Haring, Sarah Lucas, Jim Shaw and Tom Wesselmann

Over 240 works of art by emerging artists as well as some of the foremost names in the contemporary art world today. The New Now sale focuses on artists who are important and relevant to the current art landscape, including Gerhard Richter, KAWS, Tracey Emin, Keith Haring, Sarah Lucas, Julian Opie, Jim Shaw and Tom Wesselmann. With individual estimates ranging from £1,000 to £200,000, the sale presents collecting opportunities for both new and established buyers to grow their collections at all levels. New Now will take place on 8 December at 30 Berkeley Square, London.

Simon Tovey, Phillips’ Head of Sale, New Now, said: “We are excited to be able to offer such a diverse range of works representing both established artists of the late 20th century, and the younger generation, many of whose reputations continue to grow from season to season.”

The sale will be led by Grün Blau Rot 789-5, which forms part of Gerhard Richter’s theoretical enquiry into the possibilities of painting and the compositional challenges of abstraction (estimate: £150,000-200,000). Executed in 1993 in collaboration with Parkett Magazine, the present work belongs to a series of 115 works, each uniquely painted in a similar format. Adopting the use of oil-based pigments and the artist’s iconic squeegee technique, the pull of red and blue paint across the canvas both conceals and unveils the acidic green under-paint freely and sporadically emerging throughout the surface plain.

Further highlights include Keith Haring’s Untitled (Bill T. Jones) (estimate: £30,000-50,000). The early ‘80s were highly prolific years for Haring as the artist teamed up with some of the leading figures of the New York art and social scene. Amongst these, the award-winning choreographer and provocative dancer Bill T. Jones who rose to prominence when he founded the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company with his long-term partner Arnie Zane. Haring and Jones produced a series of exceptional collaborations in both performance and drawing.

Depicting velvety red lips exhaling smoke, From Smoker#7 demonstrates Tom Wesselmann’s striking virtuosity in manipulating basic and familiar images into abstract and unsettling ones. In the Smokers series, developed from the late ’60s as an outgrowth of the Nudes and continued through to the early 70’s, Wesselmann shifts his focus on to one specific part of the woman’s body, thus emphasising the element of fetichism present in his oeuvre since the earlier works.

Inspired by the Pop aesthetics of Claes Oldenburg and Tom Wesselmann, and driven by his captivation with cartoon characters like Bugs Bunny and Mickey Mouse, KAWS emerged from the 1990s New York street art scene where he began his career creating ‘forced collaborations’ by employing advertisement found in public places. Upon his move to Tokyo, KAWS appropriated limited edition toys into his art, creating his own cast of characters, including Four Foot Dissected Companion.

The New Now sale presents a selection of 11 works by former and current students of the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), Moscow. These works will be sold to raise money in support of the educational, research and publishing activities of the ICA. Since it was founded in 1991, the ICA created a space for experiment and discussion in the turmoil of the Post-Soviet reality. Artists represented include Irina Korina, emerging artist Ustina Yakovleva, and Rostan Tavasiev (estimate: £3,000 – £5,000).

The sale offers a selection of street works by artists including Stik, Shepard Fairey, Invader and Swoon. A leading highlight is an original street art work by British artist Stik. Entitled Magpie, the work was executed in 2009 and comes from the front wall of the Magpie Social Centre in Bristol (estimate: £8,000 – 12,000). Stik, said: “The Magpie Social Centre was one of the free spaces that actively encouraged street art and helped me to become the artist I am today. I rarely approve of the sale of street pieces but it gives me great pleasure to authenticate this piece so that Magpie can continue to support the next generation of artists.”

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