What will Sotheby’s Hong Kong offer in the upcoming Autumn sale series?
Hong Kong will host Sotheby’s 2013 Autumn sales from 4 to 8 October, when works from blue-chip Asian artists will come under the hammer. Art Radar takes a look at some of the works on offer.
Hong Kong is proving to be a strong art market thanks to events such as the recent inaugural Art Basel Hong Kong, according to The Guardian, with international collectors eager to purchase Chinese and Southeast Asian art. Auction houses such as Sotheby’s reflect the strength of the regional art market, offering collectors top-selling works.
The upcoming Sotheby’s Hong Kong Autumn Sale Series runs from 4 to 8 October 2013, with sales ranging in scope from traditional Chinese ink painting to contemporary Asian art. With five of the upcoming auctions focusing on Contemporary and Modern art, Art Radar takes a look at some of the works that will fall under the hammer.
“Contemporary Literati: Early Ink Masters”, (previews 3 and 4 October, auction on 5 October) features major artworks by Chinese ink painters who established their careers in the West during the early twentieth century and who still influence younger generations of artists.
The auction will feature 41 lots (total estimated approximately HKD6.4 million or USD825,000) by artists such as Chen Qikuan, Fang Zhaolin, He Huaishuo, Li Yihong, Liu Guosong, Lü Shoukun, Wang Jiqian, Zheng Weiguo and Zhou Luyun.
The early twentieth century Chinese ink painters built on the thousand-year old tradition of Chinese literati painting, adding western modern art techniques to create innovative new works while still maintaining the “memory of the best of old traditions” according to Mee-Seen Loong, Sotheby’s Vice Chairman of Chinese Art.
Highlights of the auction include a work by Liu Guosong (Liu Kuo-sung, b. 1932). Titled Midnight Sun, the ink painting is estimated to fetch HKD1,200,000 to 1,600,000 (USD155,000 to 207,000).
Liu combined Chinese traditional ink painting with western Expressionist oil painting and is notable for being the first to use textured paper surfaces and vivid colours. Liu’s various techniques, such as drawing ink with brushes onto wet surfaces or applying acrylic paint with an airbrush, helped him achieve unique landscape effects. Midnight Sun, which was inspired by the 1969 moon landing, is one such example.
“Sotheby’s Hong Kong Fortieth Anniversary Evening Sale” (5 October) features work from several of the auction house departments: Twentieth Century Chinese Art, Contemporary Asian Art and Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian Art. Over sixty works by artists such as Wang Yidong, Chu Tehchun, Zeng Fanzhi, Liu Ye, Walter Spies and Ronald Ventura will be on offer, plus seven works by modern Chinese masters such as Zao Wou-ki, Sanyu and Wu Guanzhong from a private collection, collectively estimated at over HKD211 million (USD27.1 million).
Zao Wou-ki’s (1920–2013) 16.5.66 is one of the highest estimated works, at HKD30 to 50 million (USD3.8 to 6.4 million). The earth tones combined with quick brushstrokes creates a dramatic cyclone in this vertical canvas. His handling of black ink to create contrasting effects illustrate his mastery of Chinese ink painting.
“The Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian” sale features paintings mainly by Indonesian artists. I Nyoman Masriadi (b. 1973) headlines the category with one of the highest estimated artworks titled Aerobik (Aerobics) and is estimated at HKD1.2 to 1.8 million (USD154,000 to 232,000). Other artists in this sale include Lee Man Fong and Sudjana Kerton.
“Twentieth Century Chinese Art” (6 October) includes landscapes, portraits and abstract paintings by artists considered as Modern masters of Chinese art: Sanyu, Pan Yuliang, Yun Gee, Zao Wou-Ki, Chu Tehchun, and Wu Guanzhong. Works by realist painters Chen Yifei, Wang Yidong and Luo Zhongli are also on sale.
Painter Yun Gee was one of the pioneers of Modern art on the West coast of the United States. Often painting natural landscapes and scenes of urban life, Yun Gee’s palette of bright colours and compositions were influenced by the Ecole de Paris school. The painting Windmill seems to depict a quaint European village, but is based on a small town outside of New York City where he often went to sketch.
“Contemporary Asian” includes 18 works by renowned Asian artists such as Yayoi Kusama, Yoshitomo Nara, Zeng Fanzhi, Liu Ye, painter Zhang Xiaogang and Takashi Murakami, creator of the Superflat movement.
Takashi Murakami’s The World of Sphere (diptych) best exemplifies his artistic collaboration with Louis Vuitton, as commissioned by the fashion house’s creative director Marc Jacobs in 2002. The Superflat style work, which merges fine art with commercial design, is making its debut appearance at auction and was included in the artist’s 2007 retrospective exhibition “©MURAKAMI” at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
- Ronald Ventura contemporary standout: Christie’s autumn 2012 art evening sale – November 2012 – a first-hand account from Art Radar at the Saturday evening modern and contemporary art auction
- Hong Kong art auction, gallery scene breakdown – ArtTactic podcast – October 2012 – Art Radar founder Kate Cary Evans talks about Sotheby’s disappointing autumn 2012 auctions
- Ashen faces, groans as Chinese art bombs – Sotheby’s Autumn 2012 Contemporary Asian Art auction – October 2012 – terrible contemporary art sales for Sotheby’s in Hong Kong
- Auction houses on move in Asia: Christie’s first Singapore Pop-Up Preview – September 2012 – Sotheby’s and Christie’s expanding Asian operations
- Sotheby’s breaks into China with first foreign auction house joint venture – September 2012 – Sotheby’s enters into the notoriously closed-off Chinese market
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