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Cy Twombly Paintings Can Bring Eight or Nine Figures in Auction !

  • Cy Twombly paintings
  • Cy Twombly paintings
  • Cy Twombly in his house at Gaeta in 1995 (detail), via sixtensason.tumblr com
  • Cy Twombly paintings
April 9, 2016
A philosophy graduate interested in theory, politics and art. Alias of Jelena Martinović.

As one of the most intelligent, erudite, sophisticated and emotionally eloquent artists of our age, Cy Twombly is a figure of great authority in modern art. Expressive drips and graffiti-like scribbles and scratches became the characteristic style of Cy Twombly paintings. Talking about these scribbled and scratched lines, he described them as childlike, but certainly not childish. “It is very difficult to fake… to get that quality you need to project yourself into the child’s line. It has to be felt”, he once said. Since he rarely spoke to the press, his life was surrounded by unique mystery.

Cy Twombly emerged in the 1950s, and after working in New York and Italy, he finally settled in Rome. He was fascinated by myth and history, and his art was much influenced by Rome and his immediate surroundings. Taking inspiration from ancient Greco-Roman history and mythology, French Neo-classicism and contemporary graffiti, his art is a combination of both traditional European sources and the new American painting. After his initial involvement with Abstract Expressionism, action painting became his point of departure for the development of his highly personal style that moved toward a more literal use of text and numbers. In addition to his paintings, he produced sculptures from found objects, clay and plaster.

Despite his persistent indifference towards fame and recognition, Cy Twombly is considered to be one of the greatest American Painters after Abstract Expressionism. As a continuation of Abstract Expressionist techniques in a post-war European setting and a combination of ‘low’ art practices in the context of ‘high’ art, his distinctive aesthetics managed to balance the history as an influence with his own sensual and emotional responses to it. His work was featured in the first exhibitions exploring Minimalism, but his expressivity also influenced a newer generation of Neo-Expressionist artists. He died in 2001, painting up to his last moments.

For all Cy Twombly paintings at auctions, make sure you visit his artworks page, and for his most expensive art, scroll down!

Editors’ Tip: Cy Twombly: 50 Years of Work on paper Hardcover – by Julie Sylvester, Simon Schama and Roland Barthes

Cy Twombly is considered the most sensitive artist among the greats of contemporary art. He developed a characteristic painting style of expressive drips and active, scribbled, and scratched lines. His early influences included Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, Jackson Pollock, and Robert Motherwell, but more formative would be his relationships with Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns, along with whom he would distance himself from the dominance of Abstract Expressionism. This publication features 84 drawings from his own collection from between 1953 and 2002. It embraces his oeuvre from early works inspired by ancient cultures and mythology to the later ones. This retrospective celebrates fifty years of his impressive career, talent and his unique aesthetics.

  • american robert rauchenberg modern museum virginia Cy Twombly Untitled 2006

Cy Twombly – Untitled, 2006

This is yet another work from the late series of Cy Twombly. With bold and rolling brushwork, Untitled from 2006 features white pulsating loops and swirls on grey painted canvas. This is one of the final works of Twombly’s career, presenting combination of different phases in his work. He uses a single line in milky colors on a blackboard-like style background. As an example of his mature practice, Untitled is a case study in Twombly’s practice of manipulating both light and dark hues. This painting was sold at Sotheby’s in New York in May in 2014 for $10,245,000.

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  • Cy Twombly Untitled

Cy Twombly – Untitled, 2006

Influenced by graffiti, calligraphy and action painting, the late Twombly series features paintings impressive for their boldness, daring color combinations and rolling or stabbing brushwork. Celebrating his long interest in flowers, ancient Greece, mythology and the sea, these paintings leave unusually strong images in the eye of the viewer. As Bacchus, the Roman god of wine and debauchery, is a recurring theme in Twombly’s work, Untitled from 2006  features charismatic doodles written in bright red representing his ‘ecstasy and insanity’, This impressive work was sold at Christie’s in New York in May in 2011 for $15,202,500.

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  • american robert rauchenberg modern museum virginia museum Cy Twombly Unititled, 1967

Cy Twombly – Unititled, 1967

Yet another work from the Blackboard series, painting Untitled created in 1967 features five rows of exuberant scrawl. Works from this series marked the abandonment of richly colorful end expressive compositions from the first half of the 1960s. Untitled from 1967 was sold at an auction at Christie’s in New York in May in 2011 for $15,202,500.

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  • Cy Twombly Untitled (Bolsena), 1969

Cy Twombly - Untitled (Bolsena), 1969

Untitled (Bolsena) is part of a series of fourteen large paintings created between August and September 1969. Working in a remote stone house on the lake on Bolsena, Twombly used oil-based housepaint, wax crayon, and lead pencil on the warm ocher-white ground to create this stunning masterpiece. As a departure from his Blackboard series, this work is both abstract and cryptically imagistic. Bolsena series features graphic forms derived from previously created drawings on the island of Saint Martin. Untitled (Bolsena) was sold at Sotheby’s in New York in May in 2013 for $15,397,000.

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  • Cy Twombly Untitled 1971

Cy Twombly – Untitled, 1971

Untitled created in 1971 is charged with intuitive energy and it features a rush of hurried diagonal and overlapping lines across the canvas. These cursive lines present an explosion of an atmospheric intoxication that could be felt throughout the Rome series. This painting presents a dialog between the classical Mediterranean of his surroundings and their calligraphic transcription. Untitled marks a turn from his earlier white ground paintings with lyrical references to mythology and ancient history. This work was sold at Christie’s in New York in November in 2015 for $17,525,000.

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  • Cy Twombly Untitled (Rome), 1964

Cy Twombly - Untitled (Rome), 1964

Cy Twombly’s stunning painting entitled Untitled (Rome) created in 1964 features stunning colors and sublime combination of line and form. As a part of a critical moment in his career, this breathtaking work is one of the physically impressive canvases of his entire oeuvre. Twombly here combines ethereal strokes of graphite, brilliantly colored graffito lines, and visceral clumps of impasto, and the painting itself is of monumental scale. It was sold at Sotheby’s in London in December in 2014 for $17,747,600.

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  • Cy Twombly Poems to the Sea

Cy Twombly - Poems to the Sea, 1959

Twombly’s collection of twenty-four drawings entitled Poems to the Sea was created in 1959. This impressive work has been widely exhibited all around the world, and it is considered as one of his artistic triumphs, marking his development towards hi new personal style. The work presents a dialogue with the classical past he was so fascinated with, and the mythology of ancient Roman-Greco civilization. It was sold by Sotheby’s New York on November 11th in 2013 for $21,669,000.

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  • Cy Twombly Untitled (New York City), 1970

Cy Twombly - Untitled (New York City), 1970

Another work from the Blackboard series, painting Untitled (New York City) created in 1970 portrays a form of visual poetry that cannot be written. Showing obsessively systematic repetition throughout this series, Twombly expressed an both an effort and inability to portray an emotion that could not be easily represented. This work was sold at Christie’s in London in February in 2015 for $30,108,300.

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  • Cy Twombly Untitled, 1970

Cy Twombly – Untitled, 1970

Untitled created in 1970 is another painting from the famous Blackboard series. It was created towards the end of the series and it is made of white wax crayon lines on a grey background. These lines are executed in four rows of energetic scrawl. It was sold at Christie’s in New York for amazing $69,605,000.

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  • Cy Twombly Untitled (New York City)

Cy Twombly - Untitled (New York City), 1968

The famous Blackboard series was developed between 1967 and 1971, and it includes a number of works on gray background. Resembling the classroom chalkboard with white markings, it features terse, white scrawls forming no actual words. Untitled (New York City) from 1968 was created towards the end of the series when he started filling the entire canvas through a strict process derived from handwriting technique, and it is the most mature work from this series due to its complexity and monumental scale. Untitled (New York City) from 1968 was sold at Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Auction on 11 November in New York for $70,530,000.

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