NEW YORK—On June 4 Swann Galleries conducted a two-part auction of American Art and Contemporary Art. Record prices were achieved for several contemporary prints, including the auction’s top lot, Cy Twombly’s Roman Notes VI, offset color lithograph, 1970, which brought $33,600, equaling the previous auction record for this print. All prices include 20 percent buyer’s premium.
Setting new benchmarks were three 1980s color screenprints by Andy Warhol: Louis Brandeis, 1980, $9,000; Teddy Roosevelt, 1986, $24,000; and General Custer, 1986, $21,600. Other notable Warhol screenprints were two more 1986 examples, Indian Head Nickel, $18,000, and Geronimo, $14,400, as well as Pepper Pot, from his celebrated first Campbell’s Soup series, 1968, $13,200.
Among many desirable works by Roy Lichtenstein were Crying Girl, offset color lithograph, 1963, $26,400; . . . Huh?, color screenprint on Arches, 1976, $10,200; and Cow Triptych (Cow Going Abstract), set of three color screenprints, 1982, $9,000.
Another featured pop art piece, British artist Peter Blake’s assemblage, The Second Real Target 25 Years Later, wood, paint, collage and found objects, 1986, realized $14,400.
Other Contemporary print highlights included Romare Bearden’s Jazz Series, set of six color lithographs, 1979, $12,000; Richard Estes’ Urban Landscapes No. 3, portfolio with eight color screenprints, 1981, $11,400; and Judy Pfaff’s When the Moon is Full, photogravure and collograph on Japan paper, 2002, $4,800.
The American Art portion of the sale offered 154 paintings and drawings by noted artists spanning the 20th century. The top lot was Arthur Szyk’s Joseph and Potiphar’s Wife, gouache and ink, 1940s, $16,800. Other watercolor highlights included George Grosz’s The Burning of the Ship the “Morro Castle” off the New Jersey Coast, watercolor over pencil, 1934, $5,280; and Leonard Baskin’s Self Portrait, watercolor, $5,040.
Among the most sought-after drawings were Jared French’s Figures Seated at a Table in a Dance Hall, pen and black ink and gray wash and pencil, circa 1935, $10,800, which was one of many drawings by the artist in the sale; a pair of early pencil drawings by Elaine de Kooning, accompanied by a portrait of the artist by Ludwig Sander, $6,000; and a pen and ink illustration by Al Hirschfeld of Republicans ’76—Ford and Reagan in the Boxing Ring, 1976, $5,520.
Oil paintings included George Luk’s The Landlord, circa 1920, $6,480; Robert Phillip’s Rochelle in her Study, 1966, $5,040; Robert Bliss’s Three Boys on the Beach, 1968, $6,000; and Gabor Peterdi’s Red Sky of Cozumel, 1987, $5,520.
For more information visit www.swanngalleries.com.