At auc­tion, lux­ury with the scent of art

Avion Luxury International Airport Magazine - - ART - In the wake of 2011 in which the pre­rog­a­tive was placed on con­tem­po­rary art in­stead of mod­ern and Im­pres­sion­ist (81.9% com­pared to 82.8%) in­vest­ing in art is al­ways a del­i­cate busi­ness. The auc­tion houses of­fer in­for­ma­tion on the mar­ket value of the work

How can you en­joy the ex­pe­ri­ence of a real auc­tion and claim the ob­ject of your de­sires and at the same time set sail on a jour­ney that leads to the port of in­vest­ments? This is what is hap­pen­ing to­day in spite of the mul­ti­fac­eted re­al­ity of the present eco­nomic and fi­nan­cial storm. It is worth find­ing se­cu­rity in the safe strong­hold of auc­tions as a form of in­vest­ment to dis­cour­age in­fla­tion­ary in­creases, es­pe­cially in the wake of 2011 in which the pre­rog­a­tive was placed on con­tem­po­rary art in­stead of mod­ern and Im­pres­sion­ist (81.9% com­pared to 82.8%). In­vest­ing in art is al­ways a del­i­cate busi­ness and im­plies the use of val­u­a­tion tools. This is ex­actly what is of­fered, for ex­am­ple, by the age-old ex­pe­ri­ence of the auc­tion house Dorotheum which, with a highly pro­fes­sional team of staff, pro­vides for its buy­ers and sell­ers, sup­ply­ing de­tailed in­for­ma­tion on the mar­ket value of the work of art owned or about to be pur­chased. Dorotheum (1707) has be­come one of the most pres­ti­gious auc­tion houses in the world and the largest in cen­tral Europe. Its head­quar­ters are lo­cated in Vi­enna, in the charm­ing Palais Dorotheum on the Dorotheer­gasse, and it has branches in Dus­sel­dorf and Mu­nich, Brus­sels, Rome and Mi­lan. The com­pany’s in­tense ac­tiv­i­ties are cen­tred around the four great in­ter­na­tional weeks of auc­tions. It holds a to­tal of six hun­dred events a year, which cover over forty spe­cial­ist sec­tors, in­clud­ing con­tem­po­rary and mod­ern art, an­tique and nine­teenth-cen­tury paint­ings, jewellery and watches, china and glass, fur­ni­ture and sil­ver. Its long sea­son of suc­cess con­tin­ues, as tes­ti­fied by the Ex­pres­sion­ist work “Wasser­burger Land­schaft mit Häusern und Wiese” (1907), oil on card­board, by the Rus­sian Alexej Jawlen­sky, which sold for €593,800 (2011), or “At the Univer­sity 1972” dated 2002, a paint­ing im­bued with so­cial­ist re­al­ism by the con­cep­tual Ukrainian-Amer­i­can artist Ilya Kabakov, which sold (Nov 2011) for €754,800, or “Charles Rosen­thal, Im Park 1930” from 1998, signed and dated on the rear, wooden case, light in box, es­ti­mated at €270/320,000, or “White sur­face” 1969, acrylic on everted can­vas (73 x 92 cm), an “in­ven­tion” of artist En­rico Castel­lani from Rovigo, who, in al­ter­ing pla­narity, suc­ceeds in comb­ing chang­ing ef­fects of light and shadow, which, with an es­ti­mate of €180/240,000, sold for €283,300 ( Nov 2011). At Sotheby’s in Lon­don, Jean-Michel Basquiat’s “Or­ange Sports Fig­ure” (1982) achieved £4,073,250, re-as­sert­ing an anti-con­ven­tion­al­ism dear to Warhol of a graf­fiti style art with in­fan­tile, rough im­ages. Bon­hams (1793) in Knights­bridge, in­stead, fo­cuses on the Ab­stract Ex­pres­sion­ists up to the best emerg­ing artists of to­day such as Boetti, Ce­cily and Glenn Brown, Doig, Landy and Raysse. In the wake of their Con­tem­po­rary One sale, this auc­tion house is of­fer­ing “Un­ti­tled” (1953), ink on pa­per, by the Chi­nese artist Zao Wou-Ki, whose cal­li­graphic forms cre­ate an en­tire world, in ad­di­tion to the sen­sual shapes on can­vas in oil, sand and ce­ment, of “Forma Lat­eral Rose” (1964), by An­toni Tàpies, a Cata­lan with neo-Dadaist traits. While at Palazzo Ramirez Mon­talvo in Florence, the head­quar­ters of the auc­tion house Pan­dolfini, on 6th June, the in­ge­nious in­san­ity of An­to­nio Li­ga­bue will be dis­played with his “Pae­sag­gio con cane” (Land­scape with dog), oil on hard­board, 40 x 57 cm, es­ti­mated at €50/60,000, a work of re­al­is­tic an­i­mals with sculp­tural qual­i­ties im­mersed in a trans­fig­ured Po plain. The vis­ual skill of Luigi On­tani viv­i­fies, in­stead, “Te­na­cia a Trento” (Tenac­ity in Trento), mixed tech­nique on card­board (€6/8,000). Af­ter the suc­cess of Porro & C.’s sale of 239 lots (to­tal

€1,700,00) of twen­ti­eth cen­tury and con­tem­po­rary works of art from the Mi­lanese apart­ment of the Gallery owner Clau­dia Gian Fer­rari held in March 2011, with note­wor­thy works by Oppi, de Pi­sis, Marus­sig, Funi, Tosi, and Fausto Pi­ran­dello and fea­tur­ing the pow­er­ful "Neo­clas­sic (Clas­si­cal Fig­ure)" 1936/38, 146,5x106 cm, ce­men­tite, oil and tem­pera on pa­per trans­ferred to can­vas, by Mario Sironi, es­ti­mate €150/180,000 and sold for €186,000, the auc­tion house’s Novem­ber ap­point­ment (30th in Mi­lan, Palazzo Durini) was an un­miss­able oc­ca­sion for pur­chas­ing a twen­ti­eth-cen­tury mod­ern or con­tem­po­rary work of art. Works be­ing auc­tioned in­clude An­to­nio Sant’Elia (“Ar­chitet­tura” (Ar­chi­tec­ture) 1911/12), and paint­ings in oil on board or can­vas, “Ve­duta di città” (City View) (es­ti­mate: €20/22,000), “Il Cire­neo” (€25/28,000) by Filippo de Pi­sis, and “Por­trait dou­ble”, graphite on pa­per by Pablo Pi­casso dated 1941 (€45/50,000), oil on can­vas 50x70 cm,

“Venezia. Isola di S.Gior­gio” (Venice. Is­land of S. Gior­gio) by de Chirico (es­ti­mate €150/180,000), “Portafor­tuna” (Lucky Charm) by Os­valdo Licini dated 1950, and “Un­ti­tled” (1957) by Al­berto Burri (es­ti­mate, €50/60,000), an un­usual ex­per­i­men­ta­tion with pa­per, fab­ric, tem­pera and vinavil, charred on cor­ru­gated card­board. Th­ese sig­nif­i­cant re­sults also find con­fir­ma­tion in the auc­tions (2011) of Farsetti Arte of Prato, which favours mod­ern and con­tem­po­rary art, ab­stract, in­for­mal and con­cep­tual works of the post-World War II era: “Tête d’homme et nu as­sis”, Pi­casso, 1964, which, in em­body­ing the re­la­tion­ship be­tween artist and model, rad­i­calises for­mal sim­pli­fi­ca­tion while mov­ing away from draw­ing and prospec­tive ac­cord­ing to an in­no­va­tive creative spirit. The work, which is es­ti­mated at €950,000/1,500,000, was pur­chased for €1,200,250. The tragic vi­sion­ary qual­ity of “Se­fer Hechaloth”, 2002, (€121,560), by Anselm Kiefer, mixed tech­nique on pa­per - a com­bi­na­tion of acrylic and emulsion and us­ing any item to hand or scrap - re­veals the con­cep­tual sin­gu­lar­ity of the Ger­man artist. In the mean­time, ex­cite­ment was grow­ing for the vi­brant moder­nity of “Sleep­ing Girl” (1964) by the Amer­i­can Roy Licht­en­stein, the king of Pop Art, an iconic mas­ter­piece of the twen­ti­eth cen­tury, be­ing auc­tioned (sold for 44,882,500 dollars) at Sotheby’s in New York on 9th May. The same sense of elec­tri­fy­ing an­tic­i­pa­tion was de­vel­op­ing for the “Im­pres­sion­ist & Evening Sale Mod­ern Art”. Head­lin­ing the auc­tion is “The Scream” by Ed­ward Munch, 1895, pas­tel on board 79x59 cm, one of four ver­sions made, owned by Nor­we­gian busi­ness­man Pet­ter Olsen (son of Thomas), a friend of Munch. It is the only ver­sion in which one of the two fig­ures in the back­ground turns to look out­wards to­wards the blood-red sky and cityscape of Oslo. This work is a turn­ing point in vis­ual global cul­ture that tran­scends the same his­tory of art, and is a pro­jec­tion of Munch’s men­tal state, a land­scape of the mind that is prophet­i­cally desta­bil­is­ing in com­par­i­son to nor­mal artis­tic canons. Auc­tion record: sold for $119,922,500. The ways of art are end­less. Those of auc­tions lead straight to the essence of things.

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