Mar 18th, 2017

NEW YORK – 17 MARCH 2017 – Phillips is pleased to announce highlights from the upcoming Photographs auction, to be held on 4 April at 2pm in New York. The sale will follow The Odyssey of Collecting: Photographs from Joy of Giving Something Foundation Evening and Day Sales which take place on Monday, 3 April at 6pm, and Tuesday, 4 April at 10am. Among the highlights of the Photographs auction are important works by Robert Mapplethorpe, Man Ray, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Richard Avedon, Robert Frank, and Richard Misrach, among others. Comprised of 118 lots, the sale is expected to bring in excess of $2.6 million.

Sarah Krueger, Phillips’ Head of Sale, Photographs, New York, said, “Our first various owners Photographs auction of 2017 brings together fresh-to-the-market works that span the 20th and 21st centuries. From an early print of Robert Frank’s Rodeo – New York City to a significant work by auction-newcomer Awol Erizku, this sale offers exciting opportunities for collectors of all levels and interests, nicely complimenting the depth of material on offer from The Odyssey of Collecting: Photographs from Joy of Giving Something Foundation Evening and Day Sales. ”


4 April, 2pm

Leading the Photographs auction is Robert Mapplethorpe’s Tulips, 1977 (estimate: $200,000-300,000). Among the first of his renowned pictures of flowers, this diptych was created at a pivotal moment in Mapplethorpe’s career. It was in the 1970s that a young Mapplethorpe made some of the most significant and influential connections of his lifetime, including taste-maker Sam Wagstaff, and collector Paul F. Walter, who commissioned the diptych on offer. Reinforcing Tulips’ importance in Mapplethorpe’s oeuvre, a year after its creation, the right panel of the diptych was chosen as the front cover for Mapplethorpe’s Y Portfolio, and in the same year Wagstaff selected both the right and left panels as the front and back cover of A Book of Photographs from the Collection of Sam Wagstaff, published with Gray Press. Later, in 1988, the present lot was exhibited in Mapplethorpe’s first museum retrospective in the United States at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York.

Two rare-to-the-market works by Richard Avedon will also be offered in the sale, including the complete set of Avedon/Paris, which is comprised of 11 gelatin silver prints (estimate: $120,000-180,000). Avedon/Paris was assembled in conjunction with his landmark 1978 retrospective exhibition at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and is a celebration of the photographer’s early career in fashion photography. The eleven photographs included in this portfolio, all taken in Paris between 1947 and 1957, highlight this influential first phase of his career, showcasing the effortless glamour and dynamic playfulness that would become hallmarks of his fashion photographs throughout the 20th century. Further, an oversized print of Jacob Israel Avedon, Father of the Photographer, Sarasota 12.19.72 (estimate: $60,000-80,000) is also on offer. Avedon’s striking portrait transcends its deeply personal nature and connects to a broader audience, bringing us closer to both father and son. Taken at Sarasota Memorial Hospital, Avedon’s signature white background transforms from an uncluttered framing device to an evocation of the setting, where the stark modern white enters the realm of the clinical. Clothed in a patterned, white hospital gown that dissolves into the background, Jacob’s focused, expressive features sear and captivate.

Additional classic highlights include Man Ray’s seminal work, Rayograph with Goggles, Egg and Candle, 1924 (estimate: $200,000-300,000) that was exhibited in London’s 1936 International Surrealist Exhibition, the first major exhibition of Surrealist art in England, and an early print of On the Banks of the Marne, France, 1938 ($100,000-150,000), one of Henri Cartier-Bresson’s most recognized pictures. Also included in the sale is a significant print of Robert Frank’s Rodeo – New York City, 1954 (estimate: $70,000-90,000) that was printed before 1957, one year prior to the release of The Americans by the French publisher, Delpire, as Les Américains, and an exceptionally rare print by Josef Albers that was taken during his tenure at the Bauhaus and exhibited in Albers’ 1988 retrospective at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, Kleiner Strand am Nachmittag (small beach in the afternoon), Biarritz, circa 1929 (estimate: $20,000-30,000).

Contemporary works of photography will also figure prominently in the auction. The cover lot of the catalogue, Richard Misrach’s Untitled #579-04, 2004 (estimate: $60,000-80,000), is from the artist’s series On the Beach. In this large scale work, a floating man is framed against the vastness of the sea, emphasizing the fragility of life. This masterful level of detail was obtained by Misrach’s dedication to using an 8×10 inch view camera, allowing for the exquisite details to be captured in the large format negatives and then scanned digitally before finalizing each work.

Further, Phillips is introducing to auction the work of Awol Erizku, whose luminescent Girl With A Bamboo Earring, 2009 (estimate: $12,000-18,000) radiates intensity, and is an undeniable descendant of Johannes Vermeer’s famed Girl with a Pearl Earring. Marrying popular culture and fine art with vibrant photographs and brilliant mixed-media installations, Erizku understands that for beauty to be recognized in a museum, it must first be recognized in culture at large.

Additional contemporary works include a solid selection of prints by Vik Muniz including his The Best of LIFE-Portfolio (estimate: $120,000-180,000) and After Rothko from Pictures of Color (estimate: $50,000-70,000), along with an exceptional example of William Eggleston’s oversized pigment prints, Untitled, circa 1971-1974 (estimate: $80,000-120,000). Further, two prints by Desiree Dolron from her series Te dí todos mis sueños (both estimates: $20,000-30,000) will be included in the sale, in addition to prints by Thomas Ruff, Wolfgang Tillmans, Philip-Lorca diCorcia, and Alec Soth.


The Odyssey of Collecting: Photographs from Joy of Giving Something Foundation

Monday, 3 April 2017 at 6pm & Tuesday, 4 April 2017 at 10am

Evening Sale: https://www.phillips.com/auctions/auction/NY040017

Day Sale: https://www.phillips.com/auctions/auction/NY040217


Tuesday, 4 April 2017 at 2pm


Auction Location: 450 Park Avenue, New York

Public Viewing: 27 March – 3 April | Monday – Saturday 10am-6pm, Sunday 12pm-6pm