Lots to Look Out For at the Upcoming New York May 2019 Auction Week

May 13, 2019

The first crunch moment of the year for the top end of the art market, the New York auctions in May 2019 will present more than $1.6 billion worth of art. Bringing together Impressionist, Modern and Contemporary art, it will provide an opportunity for owners of big-ticket works to maximize prices and for the auction houses to maximize revenues.

Although the estimates for next week are modest, auctions will include dozens of works by trophy names such as Jeff Koons, Francis Bacon, Paul Cézanne, Claude Monet, Mark Rothko, Louise Bourgeois and Jean-Michel Basquiat. What's interesting, all three auction houses will offer work by KAWS, hoping to give their figures a boost. Let's take a look at the auctions and artworks worth keeping an eye on during one of the art world’s most turbulent weeks.

Pablo Picasso - Nu couché et musicien, 1967
Pablo Picasso - Nu couché et musicien, 1967. Oil and Ripolin on canvas, 19 5/8 x 24 1/8 in. (50 x 61.1 cm). Christie's New York

Christie’s Impressionist and Modern Art Sales

Once again, Christie’s selection of Impressionist and modern artworks is quite impressive. Out of six, here are two different Christie’s Impressionist and modern art auctions worth keeping an eye on.

Opening the 20th Century Week at Christie’s New York on May 13th, the Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale will present some standout masterworks from the genre, celebrating the use of light and the investigation of colors, materials, textures and media. Art collectors will have a shot at acquiring works like Vincent van Gogh's Arbres dans le jardin de l'asile from 1889, Paul Cézanne's Bouilloire et fruits from 1888-1890, Amedeo Modigliani's Tête from 1911-1912, estimated between $30,000,000 and $40,000,000, and Pablo Picasso's La Lettre (La Réponse) from 1923 ($20,000,000-$30,000,000).

Taking place on May 14th, Christie's Impressionist and Modern Art Day Sale will offer significant works from the 20th-century movements that shaped the future of art and art collecting. Highlights of the sale include Pablo Picasso's Nu couché et musicien from 1967, Tamara de Lempicka's Nu assis from 1925 and Edvard Munch's Kystlandskap from 1922, all estimated between $1,000,000 and $1,500,000, as well as Emil Nolde's Kleines Meerbild from 1939, ($800,000 and $1,200,000), and Camille Pissarro's Le Pont Boieldieu à Rouen, effet de brume from 1896, going between $700,000 and $1,000,000, among others.

Robert Rauschenberg - Buffalo II, 1965
Robert Rauschenberg - Buffalo II, 1965. Pil and silkscreen ink on canvas, 96 x 72 in. (243.8 x 183.8 cm). Christie's New York

Christie’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Auctions

During their Post-war and Contemporary art auctions, Christie’s will offer works by some of the greatest icons in recent art history.

Taking place on May 15th, Christie’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale will bring together an exceptional selection of works by some of the most important names in 20th-century art and paintings by some of today’s most exciting contemporary artists. Among highlights are Robert Rauschenberg's Buffalo II from 1965, hoping to go higher than $50,000000 but lower than $70,000,000, Jeff Koons's Rabbit from 1986 ($50,000,000 and $70,000,000), Andy Warhol's Double Elvis [Ferus Type] from 1963, estimated between $50,000,000 and $70,000,000, and Roy Lichtenstein's Kiss III from 1962, with a price range between $30,000,000 and $50,000,000.

The Post-War and Contemporary Art Morning Session will take place on May 16th, offering standout examples of Pop Art, Abstract Expressionism, Color Field Painting and other defining movements of the post-war era. Art collectors will have an opportunity to bid on Mark Tansey's Repairing the Wheel from 1966 ($3,000,000-$5,000,000), Andy Warhol's Marilyn Monroe (Marilyn) from 1967, estimated between $2,000,000 and $3,000,000, Joan Mitchell's Landscape for a Friend from 1977 ($1,500,000-$2,000,000), Robert Motherwell's August Sea No. 4 from 1972, between $1,500,000 and $2,000,000, and Open White and Black from 1969 ($1,200,000-$1,800,000), and Yayoi Kusama's Infinity-Nets (BCO) from 2013, estimated between $1,500,000 and $2,000,000.

Taking place the same day, the much-anticipated Post-War and Contemporary Art Afternoon Session will conclude 20th Century Week with important works from the late 20th century to the present day. Highlights include George Condo's The Drifters from 2009, with an estimate $1,800,000-$2,500,000, KAWS's IN THE WOODS from 2002, ($1,500,000 and $2,000,000), Donald Judd's Untitled from 1988, ($1,200,000 and $1,800,000), and Jean-Michel Basquiat's Dinah Washington from 1986, ($1,200,000 and $1,800,000).

Claude Monet - Meules, 1889
Claude Monet - Meules, 1889. Oil on canvas, 28 5/8 by 36 3/4 in. (72.7 by 92.6 cm). Sotheby's New York

Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Art Sales

This May, Sotheby’s will present buyers an array of paintings, works on paper and sculptures by leading artists of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. These two auctions should be on your radar.

Taking place on May 14th, Sotheby's Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale will present a breathtaking array of works from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Highlights include Claude Monet's Meules from 1890, Picasso's Femme au chien from 1962, estimated between $25,000,000 and $30,000,000, Mousquetaire À La Pipe from 1968 ($20,000,000-$30,000,000), and Nu au chapeau, buste from 1965 ($6,500,000-$8,500,000), and William Bouguereau's La Jeunesse de Bacchus from 1884, going between $25,000,000 and $35,000,000.

Taking place the next day, Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Day Sale, will present a diverse selection of paintings, sculpture and works on paper, including works from the Collection of Joe R. and Teresa L. Long. The sale will provide an opportunity to acquire works such as Rufino Tamayo's Dos Personajes from 1970, estimated between $1,500,000 and $2,000,000, same price range like Maurice de Vlaminck's Les canotiers à chatou from 1904-05, Marc Chagall's Le baiser from 1981, and Paysage de Paris en bleu from 1967.

Mark Rothko - Untitled, 1960
Mark Rothko - Untitled, 1960. Oil on canvas, 69 by 50 1/8 in. (175.3 by 127.3 cm). Sotheby's New York

Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Auctions

Sotheby's will also offer a fine selection of contemporary art by some of the most exciting and innovative artists of the late 20th and 21st centuries, spread across two auctions.

Scheduled for May 16th, Sotheby's Contemporary Art Evening Auction will feature a robust offering of contemporary masterpieces, including Mark Rothko's Untitled from 1960, estimated between $35,000,000 and $50,000,000, Francis Bacon's Study for a Head from 1952, probably going between $20,000,000 and $30,000,000, and Study for Portrait from 1982 ($12,000,000-$18,000,000), and Christopher Wool's Untitled  from 1990, going between $12,000,000 and $18,000,000.

The next day, the Contemporary Art Day Auction will present a spectacular group of works from the post-war period to today. It will include works by some of the most influential artistic voices of the 20th century, including David Hockney's Pool and Pink Pole from 1984, estimated between $1,800,000 and $2,500,000, same as Cy Twombly's Death of Giuliano de Medici from 1962, Hans Hofmann's Setting Sun, estimated between $1,500,000 and $2,000,000, just like Gerhard Richter's Abstraktes Bild from 1986.

Featured images: Rufino Tamayo - Dos Personajes, 1970. Oil and sand on canvas, 38 by 50 7/8 in. (96.5 by 129.2 cm); David Hockney - Pool and Pink Pole, 1984. Oil on canvas, 21 by 25 in. (53.3 by 63.5 cm.); Vincent van Gogh - Arbres dans le jardin de l'asile, 1889. Oil on canvas, 16 3/8 x 13 ¼ in. (41.6 x 33.5 cm.); Mark Tansey - Repairing the Wheel, 1996. Oil on canvas, 86 x 64 in. (213.4 x 162.6 cm.). Images courtesy Christie's and Sotheby's.

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