LAMA BLOG

Peter’s Auction Pick of the Day: Abstract Expressionism

June 4, 2018

Abstract Expressionism was the dominant style of art in America from 1950 to 1965. The June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction features a number of strong paintings from some legendary figures in the movement.

One painting by Edward Dugmore is particularly illustrative of the period when American artists were producing some of the most vital art in the world after WWII. Blue-Black, a spectacular oil on canvas from 1958, was first exhibited in 1960 at the Art Institute of Chicago alongside works by Robert Rauschenberg, Louise Nevelson, and Milton Resnick among others.

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA)

Edward Dugmore, Blue-Black, 1958

Emerson Woelffer’s Forio D’Ischia #16 is another work (also from 1958) that stands out. It was painted on the Italian island of Ischia a year before accepting a teaching position in Los Angles where among his first students would be Ed Ruscha. The printed words on the surface at top and in the center of the image was a distinct part of Woelffer’s vocabulary that didn’t escape the young Ruscha’s attention.

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA)

Emerson Woelffer, Forio D’Ischia #161958
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

Norman Bluhm’s Over and Under Blue from 1964 is a classic work of drips and gestures that represents the best of the Ab-Ex ideas of an artist expressing the deceptively simple “action painting.”

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA), June 10, 2018 Modern Art and Design Auction

Norman Bluhm, Over and Under Blue1964
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction


LOT INFORMATION:

Lot 194
Edward Dugmore
Blue-Black
1958
Oil on canvas
Signed, titled, and dated canvas verso; retains Holland-Goldowsky Gallery and Manny Silverman Gallery labels to canvas stretcher verso
Together with Holland-Goldowsky Gallery label and Art Institute of Chicago exhibition label
Canvas: 76″ x 48″; Frame: 77.625″ x 49.625″

Provenance:  Holland-Goldowsky Gallery, Chicago, Illinois; Playboy International, Chicago, Illinois; Manny Silverman Gallery, Los Angeles, California; Private Collection, Beverly Hills, California (acquired directly from the above); Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above, 2013)
Exhibited:  “Society for Contemporary American Art Annual Exhibition XX and 20th Anniversary Exhibit,” The Art Institute of Chicago, May 17-June 18, 1960
Literature: Society for Contemporary American Art Annual Exhibition XX and 20th Anniversary Exhibit. Art Institute of Chicago exh. cat. 1960. #10.

Estimate: $40,000 – 60,000
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

Lot 181
Emerson Woelffer
Forio D’Ischia #16
1958
Oil on canvas
Signed and dated lower right; retains Hackett Freedman Gallery label and Art Lending Services from the Museum of Modern Art, New York label verso
Canvas: 39.55″ x 27.5″; Frame: 40.375″ x 28.625″

Provenance:  Hackett Freedman Gallery, San Francisco, California; Private Collection, Connecticut; Private Collection, Belleair Bluffs, Florida

Estimate: $9,000 – 12,000
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

Lot 179
Norman Bluhm
Over and Under Blue
1964
Acrylic on paper
Signed and dated in graphite lower right edge of sheet; retains David Klein Gallery and Manny Silverman Gallery labels frame verso
Composition/sheet: 26.75″ x 40″; Frame: 35.75″ x 48.5″
Provenance:  David Anderson Gallery, Buffalo, New York; Private Collection, Birmingham, Michigan (acquired directly from the above, 2006); Private Collection, Los Angeles, California (acquired directly from the above, 2008)

Estimate: $15,000 – 20,000
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

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