In a groundbreaking Christie’s auction on November 9, 2023, Richard Diebenkorn’s seminal artwork, “Recollections of a Visit to Leningrad,” achieved a record-setting price of $46,410,000 US. Painted in 1965, this monumental canvas, measuring 181.3 x 211.1 cm, stands as a testament to Diebenkorn’s transformative encounter with the works of Henri Matisse during a rare trip to the Soviet Union in the 1960s. Diebenkorn’s journey to the Soviet Union was part of a cultural exchange initiated by President John F. Kennedy and Premier Nikita Khrushchev. During his visit, the artist immersed himself in Matisse’s masterpieces, particularly those housed in the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow and the State Hermitage Museum in Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg). This experience had a profound impact on Diebenkorn, inspiring a shift in his artistic approach towards abstracted planes of rich and vibrant color.
In a groundbreaking auction at Christie’s on November 9, 2023, Claude Monet’s masterpiece, “Le bassin aux nymphéas,” achieved a record-setting sale of USD 74,010,000. The iconic painting, dating from 1917-1919 and measuring 100.1 x 200.6 cm, surpassed all expectations, becoming one of the most expensive Monet artworks ever sold. Widely celebrated as a landmark of late Impressionism, “Le bassin aux nymphéas” captures the essence of Monet’s famed gardens at Giverny. The large-scale canvas showcases the artist’s signature play of impasto and vibrant brushwork, offering a mesmerizing portrayal of the flowing planes of flowers and the expansive lily pond.
High-End Ceramics: Timeless Masterpieces by Hans Coper, Lucie Rie, and Jennifer Lee from an Exquisite Private French Collection at Bonhams
A selection of 15 exceptional ceramics by Hans Coper, Lucie Rie, Jennifer Lee, Ewen Henderson, Colin Pearson, Duncan Ross and Walter Keeler from a private French collection will be offered at Bonhams Cornette de Saint Cyr in Paris on Wednesday 6 December 2023. Hans Coper (1920-1981) was a leading figure in the field of studio pottery — the production of unique ceramic wares made by individual artist-potters in small batches. Together with Lucie Rie (1902-1995), he was instrumental in revolutionising British ceramics, adopting a style which was increasingly sculptural.
Following the success of the first CoBrA sale last year in Copenhagen, where several records were set, notably for Corneille and Stephen Gilbert, the Danish auction house Bruun Rasmussen, part of the Bonhams network, presents a new CoBrA sale on 5 December at its new premises in Lyngby. A touring exhibition featuring a selection of paintings will begin in Amsterdam from 14 to 15 November, then travel to Brussels from 17 to 19 November at Bonhams Cornette de Saint Cyr, before concluding in Copenhagen with the auction on 5 December. An online sale will take place from 29 November to 12 December.
Afghan Artists and Cultural Heritage in Extreme Danger: The World is Failing Afghanistan on Two Critical Fronts
The Artistic Freedom Initiative (AFI) urgently called for the safety of Afghan artists who are categorically persecuted by the Taliban as demonstrated in a new report launched today: Artistic Exodus: Afghan Artists Fleeing Taliban Rule. The report, produced in partnership with UC Berkeley Law Pro Bono Program, brings to light the abuse of people working in music, visual arts, performing arts, film and television, literature, museums, cultural heritage sites and arts education since the regime regained control of Afghanistan two years ago.
The Helen and David Milling Collection, featuring the finest British and American art pottery and glass from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, will be showcased at Bonhams this December. Over the span of half a century, the Michigan couple meticulously assembled an exceptional collection from some of the era’s most renowned potters, designers, and artists. This distinguished assortment comprises more than 350 lots, to be presented across three sales this December: 20th Century Decorative Arts and Ceramics on December 5 in London, Modern Decorative Art & Design on December 12 in New York, and the dedicated Helen and David Milling Online auction from December 8–18 at Bonhams Skinner.
For many the allure of the contemporary art is unparalleled. The moment you acquire your first piece, you step into a world brimming with cutting-edge creativity, modern expressions, and a vibrant pulse on the current artistic landscape. Embarking on your exploration of high-end contemporary art necessitates a comprehensive immersion into this sophisticated realm. Commence your journey by dedicating time to rigorous research, delving into the multifaceted layers of the contemporary art landscape.
Double Olympian Martial Artist Neil Eckersley: Fighting Dementia Through Visual Art – An Exclusive Interview
In this insightful interview, we delve into the remarkable journey of Double Olympian Neil Eckersley, a martial artist whose passion for both sports and art has transcended artistic boundaries. Raised in a working-class environment near Manchester, Neil discovered his love for judo at a young age, leading him to become a Double Olympian and secure a Bronze Medal at the 1984 Los Angeles Games. However, it was a profound personal tragedy, the loss of his older brother, that ignited his passion for visual art. Neil’s artistic expression not only became a form of therapy but also a powerful means to advocate for dementia awareness, a cause close to his heart after witnessing his father’s struggle with the disease. Through his captivating artwork, Neil channels his resilience and Olympian spirit, creating a dialogue around dementia and inspiring change. Join us as we explore the intersection of athleticism, artistry, and advocacy in Neil Eckersley’s extraordinary journey, profoundly shaped by his father’s courage in facing dementia.
In the face of economic uncertainty, individuals worldwide are turning to art not just as a means of self-expression but also as a supplementary income. The artistic world, once perceived as a realm of passion rather than profit, is now becoming a viable second career option for many, offering both financial stability and emotional fulfillment. Recent statistics from the United States and other countries underscore this growing trend, shedding light on how art is reshaping lives and livelihoods.
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, one of the world’s most enduring disputes, has left deep scars on communities on both sides. Yet, amidst the political turbulence and historical grievances, a beacon of hope emerges in the form of art. Human creativity has the remarkable ability to transcend borders, cultures, and political ideologies, offering a unique path toward understanding and reconciliation. Despite the presence of war, hatred, and violence, artistic expression provides a lens through which individuals from diverse backgrounds can peer into the lives and narratives of the ‘other,’ fostering empathy and breaking down stereotypes. Art serves as a catalyst for dialogue, encouraging conversations that are often difficult within the rigid frameworks of modern political discourse. By engaging with art, people are encouraged to see beyond surface-level differences and recognize the shared humanity that unites them, potentially paving the way for mutual respect and coexistence.