Swann will hold its African American art sale on April 5th featuring works by Jacob Lawrence, Charles White, Beauford Delaney, Sam Gilliam. Here’s what Swann says about the sale:
- Tension on the High Seas from Jacob Lawrence’s 1954-56 series Struggle . . . From the History of the American People. Until now, the whereabouts of five of the 30 panels from the series were lost. The rediscovery and auction debut of 19. Tension on the High Seas is expected to reinvigorate the search for the remaining four panels; it is estimated at $75,000 to $100,000.
- A stunning, larger-than-life charcoal portrait by Charles White, O Freedom, 1956, depicts a young man framed against the sky in an open and uplifting gesture of hope. It leads the sale at $200,000 to $300,000–the first time the drawing has been exhibited publicly in 60 years.
- Vibrant paintings by modernist New York artists include Beauford Delaney’s large Untitled (Village Street Scene), 1948, (above) which depicts a Greenwich Village corner in bold citrine impasto and carries an estimate of $150,000 to $250,000. An untitled mid-career abstraction by Norman Lewis, 1956, explores a city crowd surrounded by thin veils of pulsating color ($150,000 to $250,000). Sam Gilliam is represented with a selection led by an arresting purple and orange beveled-edge canvas from 1972, at the height of his experimental “soak stain” approach to color field painting ($40,000 to $60,000).
- the second oil painting by Elizabeth Catlett ever to come to market, Head of a Woman (Woman), 1943-44, carrying an estimate of $80,000 to $120,000. Also superlative is the largest work by Ed Clark ever to come to auction, Untitled, 1990, a dynamic composition in four colors, with an estimate of $60,000 to $90,000. Jack Whitten. Primordial Landscape, 1967, is an excellent example of Hale Woodruff’s postwar painting, in which he describes landscape and natural phenomena within the idiom of Abstract Expressionism ($80,000 to $120,000).