Barbara Hepworth’s Menhirs is among the top lots being offered in Christie’s series of Modern British, Scottish and Irish art sales taking place early next week. Stanley Spencer and Henry Moore will also be represented alongside a work by L. S. Lowry. Here’s Christie’s press release with the details:
Christie’s Modern British Art Evening Sale will be held on 19 November 2018. The sale comprises major works by British painters and the Scottish Colourists, as well as equestrian and figurative sculptures. Icons of British painting of the century will be led by Stanley Spencer’s Caulking (1940, estimate: £1,500,000-2,500,000), being offered for the first time, together with L. S. Lowry’s A Northern Race Meeting (1956, estimate: £1,500,000-2,500,000), which has remained in the same family for over half a century, having been purchased the year the work was completed.
“We have outstanding examples of great work by Stanley Spencer, L. S. Lowry and Samuel John Peploe, all of which we bring to auction for the first time, something that we expect will spark a strong response from our international clients. Alongside these are major examples from the 1950s and 60s by the leading artists of the day, including Allen Jones, Peter Lanyon, Patrick Heron and Leon Kossoff. The finest examples of equestrian sculpture from Elisabeth Frink and William Turnbull will also be showcased alongside figurative sculptures by Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth, Lynn Chadwick, Eric Gill and others.” commented Nick Orchard, Head of Department, Modern British.
The Modern British Art Day Sale will follow on 20 November. Highlights of the sale include Howard Hodgkin’s IMAX Cinema (1999, estimate: £40,000-60,000) and Samuel John Peploe’s Apples and Pewter Pot (mid 1920s, estimate: £150,000-250,000), never before seen at auction. An online Modern/British & Irish Art sale will accompany the two live sales from 16 to 23 November. Estimates in the Modern British Art season range from £800 to £2,500,000.
Leading the group of important British sculpture, Reclining Figure: Open Pose by Henry Moore (1982, estimate: £1,200,000-1,800,000) is one of the final reclining figures the artist created, with a cast of the work owned by the Henry Moore Foundation selected to be displayed in No. 10 Downing Street in the late 1980s. Figure (1932, estimate: £600,000-800,000) is the culmination of a period of re-education and reflection Moore independently underwent in the 1920s and 1930s after moving to London. It was during this time Moore made his first visit to
London’s British Museum where he encountered African and Central American art. Two Piece Sculpture No. 7: Pipe (1966, estimate: £600,000-800,000) with its polished surface, is a compelling example of the artist’s decision to divide the reclining form into two parts to create an infinite variety of viewpoints. Menhirs by Barbara Hepworth (1964, estimate: £800,000-1,200,000) evokes the grandeur and power of the standing human figure, a fundamental constituent in Hepworth’s oeuvre. The title refers to the numerous prehistoric stone monoliths,
which Hepworth encountered whilst living in St. Ives.
Samuel John Peploe is regarded as the master of the Scottish Colourists, highly celebrated for his mastery of tone. The Bénédictine Bottle (circa 1914-18, estimate: £500,000-800,000) illustrates the impact living in Paris had on Peploe’s aesthetic, together with the highly experimental turn his art took during the period immediately following his return to Edinburgh. Red and White Tulips (early 1920s, estimate: £200,000-300,000) is a vivid statement of modernity, in which he combines forms, saturated colours and balance. Painted in 1929 The Pink
Box; a Portrait of Margaret Morris by John Duncan Fergusson (1929, estimate: £400,000-600,000) is one of Fergusson’s most important and erotically charged paintings and is emblematic of his artistic interests at the time. Invigorated by the lively artistic atmosphere, the picture was one of the largest and most complete works painted at Fergusson’s new studio in the Montparnasse district of Paris at Parc Montsouris.