LAMA announces painting by Vija Celmins to headline the June 10, 2018 Auction

March 14, 2018

LAMA announces an important early painting by Vija Celmins will headline the June 10, 2018 Modern Art and Design Auction.


The previously unpublished painting is a seminal example of the artist’s now famous deadpan style. Vija Celmins was well known for depicting common objects around her small studio in Venice, California during the early 1960s. Other examples from this period previously sold by LAMA have included a painting of a ham hock (Untitled (Ham Hock), 1964), which is now in the permanent collection of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and another (Untitled (Knife and Dish), 1964) that simply depicted a plate and knife.

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAAM)

Vija Celmins, Unitled (Fish), 1963
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

Peter Loughrey, director of LAMA, states “Of all the celebrated artists that emerged in Los Angeles during the 1960s, Celmins’ work is perhaps the most difficult to find. There are very few paintings known to exist. Untitled (Fish) is a superb example.”

This painting was purchased directly from the artist in 1964 and has remained in the same collection ever since. The condition and quality of the work is among the best known of this period.

The auction will also include art by other modern and contemporary artists as well as furniture and decorative arts.

The preview will be open to the public from May 29, 2018 to June 9, 2018.  The auction is Sunday, June 10th and will begin at 12pm (Pacific).

For more details or high resolution images, please contact


Lot 140:
Vija Celmins
Untitled (Fish)
Oil on canvas
Dated lower right edge of canvas; signed and dated canvas verso; retains artist’s label frame verso
Canvas: 17.75″ x 24.5″; Frame: 18.25″ x 25″
Auction Estimate: $500,000-700,000

June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

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