March 17, 2002
The March 17, 2002 20th Century Decorative Arts Auction, held in conjunction with Butterfields Los Angeles, featured 640 lots. In addition to Modern Design, Modern Prints and Paintings, and Arts & Crafts Furniture and Decorative Arts, the sale included American Art Glass, European Art Glass, European Ceramics and Bronzes, Art Nouveau Furniture and Decorative Arts, Art Deco Furniture and Decorative Arts, as well as Prints, Sculptures, and Vintage Posters. The sale also included robust selections from the Robert Willis Estate, the Estate of Herbert Matter, a major oil company, property from a Northern California gentleman, and property to benefit the United Way.
The Modern Design section included various George Nelson pieces of furniture and clocks, an R.M. Schindler compartmental “Unit” chair designed for the Van Patten Residence, a K.E.M. Weber animation desk custom manufactured for Walt Disney Feature Animation, designs by Charles & Ray Eames, and a Sam Maloof rocking chair.
The Fine Art section presented a wide selection of paintings, prints, and lithographs from Josef Albers, Richard Anuszkiewicz, Alexander Calder, Christo, Gene Davis, Sam Francis, Keith Haring, Sol Lewitt, and Claes Oldenburg.
Frederick J. Kiesler is perhaps best known for his pioneering avant garde principles which have influenced architects and artists for much of the 20th century. The cover lot, two Frederick J. Kiesler freeform nesting tables (Lot 3177 est. $100,000 – 150,000), is one of his rarest works of which only three designs are know to have been produced. One set is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) and one was exhibited in “Aluminum by Design: Jewelry to Jets” organized by the Carnegie Museum of Art.