MODERN ART & DESIGN AUCTION
June 26, 2011
The June 26, 2011 Modern Art & Design Auction featured over 450 lots of modern painting, sculpture, and design. Highlights included a rare Robert Rauschenberg Combine from 1958, an Alexander Calder painting, and a collection of William"Billy" Haines custom designs. Each of these highlights came from decades-old collections and nearly half of the lots had never traded hands on the open market. Other lots included prints and multiples by Lichtenstein, Man Ray, Ruscha, Picasso, Miro, and Warhol. The auction reached sales of over $1.5 million, selling 70.2% by lot and 71.5% by value.
Robert Rauschenberg's Untitled (Combine) 1958 (Lot 155 est. 100,000 - 150,000, realized $93, 750), was originally created for painter and collage artist Ilse Getz-Danes, a close friend of Rauschenberg. Ms. Getz-Danes' husband, Gibson A. Danes, was chairman of the art department at UCLA from 1952-57, and was also a former dean of the Yale School of Art and Architecture. Combines, a term Rauschenberg invented to define his mixed media collages, redefine the notion of a collage by granting a different role to commonplace objects. Untitled (Combine) 1958 features oil painting on a Solo coffee cup lid, which is mounted on paper within the artist's frame. The work was exhibited at the Leo Castelli Gallery in New York in the 1960s and has been in a private collection in Los Angeles since the early 1990s.
Fresh, original works, unseen on the market for over a generation, attracted a global audience. The Calder Butterfly and Spiral (1970) (Lot 10 est. $35,000 - 45,000) went over estimate, bringing $75,000. Other top lots included the Richard Anuszkiewicz painting Gilt Order (1969) (Lot 15 est. $18,000 - 25,000, realized $40,625), a Sam Maloof collection of early designs that totaled $53,750, and a Dieter Rams Braun Stereo (Lot 39 est. $2,000 - 3,000, realized $13,750).