The auction: a sure investment
Let’s start with Marilyn Monroe, a timeless icon of course. It may be because we are surrounded by a society of show business that engulfs everything, but referring to her as an icon thanks to the transfiguration of Andy Warhol is a real must when it is the images that create a legend and vice-versa. The 1967 colour screen print that auctioned recently at the Dorotheum, estimated at €25,000 - 35,000 and sold for €116,200, highlights just how important auctions are for contemporary art. The Dorotheum, thanks to a glorious history beginning in 1707, which is magnified by specialist expertise and market knowledge, embodies and enlivens tradition, as well as offering a variety of specialist proposal and constant customer support, thus ensuring its reputation as the greatest auction house in central Europe and German-speaking regions. Other proposals were confirmed in Marilyn’s wake, and the German auction house ended the spring week with the highest return ever yielded: 5.6 million Euros. This included the sale of the contorted body forms and cutting line-work that characterise Egon Schiele’s "Seated female nude, seen from above" in gouache, watercolour and pencil on paper from 1912, sold for €398,300, or Gustav Klimt’s "Annerl", bust of a small girl looking to her right from 1885 with its accentuated line work in black chalk and pencil with white accents on paper (€97,897); Giorgio de Chirico’s " Venezia, Isola di San Giorgio", circa 1960, where the architectural background articulates the space, contrary to metaphysical developments, which sold for €122,300; and " Action Painting", 1984, oil on jute, by Hermann Nitsch (1938), an energetic dispersion of colour, which was secured for €97,900. At Bonhams in London, in Amedeo Modigliani’s "Girl with Black Hair "( oil on canvas, 65 x 49.4 cm 1918 - 1919; estimated at £700,000 - 1,000,000, sold for £825,250), the simplicity of a short haired woman’s face with supple and expressive features, as if she were a sculpture, are rendered with modernist stippled brushstrokes. Pablo Picasso’s "Notre Dame de Paris", marked ’25.10.54’ (bottom right), oil on canvas, was estimated at £700,000 - £1,000,000 and sold for £864,450. A forerunner in the cubist movement in reinterpreting the perspective of landscapes, where the sky and the mountains merge, he “photographs” other aspects of realism. Instead "Futebol" (circa 1958) sold for £145,250, by the Candido Portinari, a Brazilian painter originating from Vicenza, portrays his aspiration to capture the bitter-sweet sparks of the Brazilian people. The proposals of the Porro & C. auction house are also attractive, starting with the late Leonardo Cremonini, a Bolognese painter of internal light and Mediterranean radiance in the spectrum of emotions that tie us to reality: " La Mosca Cieca", 1963/64, by Leonardo Cremonini, oil on canvas, displayed in Venice, at the XXXII Biannual International Art Exhibition of ’64, was sold for €96,720. If "Strada Illuminata (Vienna)", 1911, pastels on card, sold for €64,480, by Ubaldo Oppi, with its sketched style, depicts a scene of togetherness with imagery in the gallant style of frescos of the XV and XVI centuries, "La Falciatrice", oil on canvas, 1954, by Giuseppe Santomaso (sold for €89,280) seduces with abstract ferocity an exasperated chromatic composition. Finally, Emilio Vedova’s work in egg tempera on canvas, 144cm x 190cm, "Dal Diario del Brasile (Spazio Inquieto n. 1)", 1954, already follows existential and political themes, giving a new dynamic to his art. Sold for €307,000 at Porro. Favouring the tendency, recognised by FarsettiArte, of collectors concentrating their attention on Italian artists within international sales at the expense of other equally deserving, but relatively unknown artists, the sale of "Natura
A Londra da Bonhams, Amedeo Modigliani con "Ragazza con i capelli neri" (olio su tela, 65 x 49,4 cm 1918-1919; stimato in £ 700-1,000,000, venduto per £ 825,250), insuffla di pennellate puntinate moderniste la semplicità del viso di una donna dai capelli corti con tratti espressivi e plastici come se fosse una scultura.
Morta" for €736,150, 1955, oil on canvas, 30.5cm x 40cm, by Giorgio Morandi, during the Farsettiarte auction of Modern and Contemporary art in May, is representative of a certain tendency. The master’s meticulous research in the (re)creation of bottles and simple everyday objects, combines expressiveness and depth of investigation that peeks out over the elements in the foreground, placed side by side, rendered in a dusty and unifying colour, from which the salmon coloured box emerges, illuminated by natural light. A representation, by extension, of the metaphorical desire to “close ranks” in the presence of an international economic crisis which wavers convictions on the stability of “goods” that were once considered safe. In moments of extreme uncertainty, considering that the market is still solid and the purchase of carefully selected and valuable works of art is still worthwhile, focusing on them as safe assets is a life raft in the sea of artists who are still able to offer beauty and guarantees in terms of holding their value as an investment for the future. Arrivederci, until the next auction.
A lato. Emilio Vedova, "Dal diario del Brasile (Spazio inquieto n. 1)", 1954. Venduto da Porro & C. In alto a sinistra. "Natura morta", 1955, di Giorgio Morandi, venduto da Farsettiarte. In alto a destra. "La mosca cieca", 1963/64, di Leonardo Cremonini. Venduto da Porro & C. Opere d'arte di estrema bellezza, realizzate da artisti celebri di fama mondiale.