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Modern & Post-War British Art at Sotheby’s London brings $14.3 million

Sotheby’s Autumn sales of Modern and Post-War British Art on 20 – 21 November brought a total of £11,114,375 / $14,259,743, with a robust sell-through rate of 80% overall and 93% in the Evening Sale, and half of the lots exceeding their high-estimates. The auction was led by Henry Moore’s maquette for the seminal Family Group, a perfect expression of the sculptor’s lifelong obsession with the universal motif of parenthood. Appearing at auction for the first time, having previously been in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art in New York and art dealer Jeffrey Loria, it now emerged from an important Japanese private collection to sell for £1,450,000 / $1,860,350. A further highlight of the Evening Sale was William Roberts’ highly sought-after The Joke, a vivid depiction of the heady Bohemian London nightlife in the 1920s,

Guggenheim restores seminal web artwork by John F. Simon Jr.

Through Conserving Computer-Based Art (CCBA), a research and treatment initiative to preserve software and computer-based artworks in the museum’s permanent collection, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum has completed the restoration of Unfolding Object (2002) by John F. Simon Jr. (b. 1963, Shreveport, Louisiana). Originally commissioned by the Guggenheim, Unfolding Object is one of three seminal web artworks in the collection, including Brandon (1998–99) by Shu Lea Cheang, which was restored by the CCBA in 2017, and net.flag (2002) by Mark Napier. Unfolding Object enables visitors from across the globe to create their own individual artwork online by unfolding the pages of a virtual “object”—a two-dimensional rectangular form–click by click, creating a new, multifaceted shape. Users may also see traces

Christie’s Watches New York announces an evening of exceptional watches

Christie’s New York announces An Evening of Exceptional Watches on Thursday, December 6th. The auction offers a carefully curated selection of 160 distinct lots that are predominately fresh-to-market and in mint condition, with estimates up to $1,000,000. Highlights include modern, vintage and sport watches from Blancpain, Breitling, Cartier, Heuer, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Omega, Patek Phillipe, Rolex, Tornek Rayville, F.P. Journe and more. The December sale features a selection of rare Rolex models in exceptional condition led by An Extremely Fine, Rare and Attractive 18K Gold Automatic Triple Calendar Wristwatch with Star Dial and Moon Phases, Rolex Ref. 6062, circa 1952 (estimate: $1,000,000-2,000,000). This superlative 6062 “Stelline” or “Star Dial” was introduced in 1950 and produced for only 10 years. This impressive watch, nicknamed

Holiday treasures at Sotheby’s New York: Unwrap magnificent jewels this December

Just in time for the holidays, Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels sale is set to take place on 4 December. Leading the sale is a rare and mesmerizing pear-shaped 10.62-carat Fancy Vivid Blue Diamond, estimated at $20/30 million. In addition to diamonds and gemstones of the very highest quality, the event will showcase signed jewels with extraordinary provenance, headlined by the collections of Barbara Sinatra, Margaretta “Happy” Rockefeller, and several distinguished private collections. Open to the public on 30 November, the sale will be presented alongside Sotheby’s exhibitions of Important Watches and Lady Blue Eyes: Property of Barbara and Frank Sinatra. Over the centuries, blue diamonds have evoked more mystery and enchantment than those of any other color, eliciting a passion among collectors that can lead to obsession for one

After years of silence, music fills streets of Iraq’s Mosul

For centuries, it was a magnet for artists across the region and churned out Iraq's best musicians -- but recent years saw Mosul suffer a devastating musical purge. For three years until last summer, the sprawling northern city was under the brutal rule of the Islamic State group. In imposing a city-wide ban on playing or even listening to music, the jihadists smashed and torched instruments. "It was impossible to bring my instrument with me whenever I left the house," said city resident Fadel al-Badri, who hid his precious violin from the rampaging fighters. Foreshadowing IS' repression, the 2000s saw Al-Qaeda and other groups impose an ultra-conservative interpretation of Islam in several districts of the city. But with Mosul freed from the grip of IS in July 2017, Iraq's second city is embarking on a musical comeback. "After the liberation, songs are back where they tr

Museo del Prado announces restoration of its Annunciation by Fra Angelico

A generous contribution of €150,000 ($171,000) to the Museo del Prado, made equally by Friends of Florence and American Friends of the Prado Museum, will go towards restoring The Annunciation by Fra Angelico and other works not held at the Prado Museum to be included in a major exhibition slated for the coming year, Fra Angelico and the Rise of the Florentine Renaissance. The exhibition is part of the Prado’s Bicentenary celebration in 2019. Miguel Falomir, Director of the Museo del Prado, Simonetta Brandolini d’Adda, President of Friends of Florence, and Christina Simmons, Executive Director of American Friends of the Prado Museum, signed a partnership agreement last Wednesday at the Prado in Madrid, Spain. On view from May 28–September 15, 2019, the exhibition of some 40 pieces is curated by Carl Brandon Strehlke,

Thao Nguyen Phan wins the Han Nefkens Foundation – Loop Barcelona Video Art Award 2018

Thao Nguyen Phan is the winner of the Han Nefkens Foundation - Loop Barcelona Video Art Award 2018, in collaboration with the Fundació Joan Miró. Thao Nguyen Phan’s wins the Han Nefkens Foundation - Loop Barcelona Video Art Award for her heterogeneous and powerful works, which have a uniquely poetic and beautiful form of storytelling. Established by the Han Nefkens Foundation in collaboration with Loop Barcelona in 2018, the annual award aims to increase contemporary artistic production in the video art field by supporting artists of Asian origin or nationality. Thao Nguyen Phan (1987, Vietnam) has unanimously been chosen as the winner of the Han Nefkens Foundation - LOOP Barcelona Video Art Award 2018 in collaboration with the Fundació Joan Miró. Promising young artist Thao Nguyen Phan has a strong

Jon King joins Leslie Hindman Auctioneers as Senior Consultant for Southeast Region

Leslie Hindman Auctioneers announced that Jon King joins the firm as Senior Consultant for the Southeast region. He has extensive auction experience as both an appraiser and in business development for the New York, California and Florida markets. Mr. King began his career in the early 1980s at Sotheby’s in Los Angeles and New York. Selected to participate in an intensive year-long management program, he was trained in every aspect of the auction business and within a multitude of collecting categories. This instilled a unique knowledge and understanding of objects as a true ‘generalist.’ As such, Mr. King can review furniture, decorative arts, fine art, clocks, watches and collectibles, a rarity in the appraisal world. While maintaining his position as an appraiser, Mr. King later ventured into the world of auction house management.

First major exhibition devoted to Don Freeman opens at the Museum of the City of New York

A City for Corduroy: Don Freeman’s New York, on view at the Museum of the City of New York from November 21, 2018, through June 23, 2019, is the first major exhibition devoted to Freeman’s work as a chronicler of New York City life. Freeman is best known as the author and illustrator of Corduroy, listed by the National Education Association as one of the top 100 children’s books of all time. But before he ever illustrated a children’s book, Freeman spent more than 20 years depicting New York City and its residents. “Don Freeman was the quintessential New Yorker. After arriving in New York as a young man, he became enchanted with the city and captured the spirit and human drama of it in his illustrations, posters, and children’s books,” said Whitney W. Donhauser, Ronay Menschel Director and President of the Museum of the City