leslierankow

Contemporary and Modern Art Advisory Service

Join Nicholas Christopher of Turon Travel in Dallas for the Art Fair and the city’s pleasures

Thomas Struth: Places
Dallas Parking Lot, 2001
C-print

IN DALLAS, FROM FRIDAY, APRIL 7th THROUGH SUNDAY, APRIL 9th, PROMINENT INTERNATIONAL AND NATIONAL GALLERIES WILL EXHIBIT A DIVERSE RANGE OF MODERN AND CONTEMPORARY ART AT THE 9TH ANNUAL ART FAIR. LOCATED IN THE FASHION INDUSTRY GALLERY ON ROSS AVENUE IN THE DALLAS ARTS DISTRICT. THE FIG SPECIAL EVENTS VENUE CONSISTS OF ALMOST 74,0000 SQUARE FEET IN A MID-CENTURY MODERN BUILDING. IT FEATURES AN ADJACENT PROMENADE NEXT TO A BEAUTIFUL PRIVATE PARK RIGHT ACROSS FROM THE DALLAS MUSEUM OF ART AND THE NASHER SCULPTURE CENTER.

 

Mark Di Suvero (left)
Joan Miro (rear right)
Nasher Sculpture Garden

IN TODAY’S LRFA POST, NICHOLAS CHRISTOPHER, FOUNDER OF TURON TRAVEL, THE GO-TO TRAVEL AGENCY FOR ALL THE ART FAIRS AROUND THE WORLD, SHARES SOME FAVORITE ART VENUES AND RESTAURANTS THAT MAKE THIS GREAT AMERICAN CITY A TERRIFIC DESTINATION!

THANK YOU, NICHOLAS, AND THANK YOU, FOLLOWERS OF THE LRFA BLOG.

https://www.turontravel.com/about-us

Mona Hatoum
Silence, 1994
Laboratory glass tubes
The Warehouse collection

The Warehouse, a project initiated by Howard Rachofsky and the late Vernon Faulconer is just a short cab ride from the fair.  Located in an adapted industrial building, with 18,000 sq ft of exhibition space, The Warehouse presents carefully considered, original exhibitions of works from The Rachofsky Collection, complemented by art acquired jointly with the Dallas Museum of Art and works on loan from other significant institutions and private collections. The mission of The Warehouse is philanthropy at its best.

In 2013, Rachofsky and Faulconer, both devoted to education in the arts, decided to make their collections available to curators, scholars, critics and students, to encourage new dialogues about postwar Modern and contemporary art. At the heart of the project is an adapted industrial building on 14105 Inwood Road in Dallas, containing art storage facilities, an extensive library, and 18,000 square feet of flexible exhibition space. 

The Warehouse
THINKING OUT LOUD: NOTES FOR AN EVOLVING COLLECTION
January 30 – April 30, 2017

As The Warehouse begins its fifth year, the current exhibition THINKING OUT LOUD: NOTES FOR AN EVOLVING COLLECTION, January 30 – April 30, 2017,  focuses on the personal collecting impulse of its two founders and reflects the pluralistic nature of contemporary art at this moment, when no dominant art movement controls the conversation. Allan Schwartzman has curated not one but several ideas that interest us, embracing recent acquisitions as well as older works not previously presented at The Warehouse.

http://thewarehousedallas.org/exhibition/

Pia Camil
The Little Dog Laughed, 2014
Installation View
Dallas Contemporary

Another must see before your leave is The Dallas Contemporary, a non-collecting art museum presenting new and challenging ideas from regional, national and international artists. The institution is committed to engaging the public through exhibitions, lectures, educational programs and events.  Their highlighted exhibitions in April will feature Pai Camil, a Mexican born artist who draws from the symbolic universe of contemporary consumerism, incorporating the signs, objects and things that form part of everyday life. Also on exhibit are works by Keer Tanchak, a Dallas based painter,  choosing aluminum for its smooth surface and neutral color. This allows the artist  to cut his paintings into any shape the subject may dictate, specifically Rococo imagery.

http://www.dallascontemporary.org/

All that walking, all that art appreciation, helps work up an appetite.  Here are some local pick hits:

The Capital Grille

Capital Grille

An outpost of the upscale steakhouse chain offers classic American fare & a clubby, refined setting.  From steaks to a locally sourced menu as great place to recharge  your batteries.

A Dallas staple located in the Crescent Hotel, the Capital Grille rewards diners with dry-aged steaks cooked to perfection. The 22-oz. Delmonico bone-in rib-eye stands out as the restaurant’s signature item. Seafood options like lobster bisque and grilled salmon are also expertly prepared. Wines (over 400 varieties) are available by the bottle and the glass. An interior of mahogany, oil paintings, and leather seating provides a classy yet unpretentious setting. If you’re looking to impress clients over an elegant business lunch, THIS is the spot to take them – it’s in the perfect location and the atmosphere there will win them over for sure.

http://www.thecapitalgrille.com/locations/tx/dallas/dallas/8012?cmpid=br:TCG_ag:ogv_ch:ppc_ca:TCG-DallasUptown-TX-BR_dt:08-14-2014_gt:TCG—Dallas_sn:goo_kw:capital-grille-dallas_ct:text

The Mansion Restaurant

The Mansion Restaurant

One of the great classic dining experiences in Dallas is The Mansion Restaurant is located in the legendary Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek.  Executive Chef Tom Parlo offers Contemporary American cuisine sparked with global overtones. The Mansion Restaurant has been pleasings its guests for over 35 years, offering a beautifully detailed classic environment and the same attention to quality in the menu,  providing one of the most inviting, approachable fine dining experience in Texas.

https://www.rosewoodhotels.com/en/mansion-on-turtle-creek-dallas/dining/mansion-restaurant

Tei-An

For a very special evening in the Arts District, Tei-An offers first tier Japanese cuisine. To quote Zagat: “Exquisite” food, including sushi and “wonderful” handmade noodles, a “trendy yet elegant” scene and “impeccable” service combine at this Arts District Japanese, “one of the best restaurants in Dallas”; interiors with “sleek styling” plus a rooftop cocktail bar with killer views add to the appeal, and help offset high prices.  What more can we say?

http://www.tei-an.com/

APRIL 18th LOOMS AHEAD, THIS YEAR’S DEADLINE FOR PERSONAL TAX RETURNS, MARCH 15th JUST HAVING PASSED FOR CORPORATE. THERE IS NO ONE MORE SEASONED AND EXPERIENCED IN THE ART OF TAX AND FINANCIAL PLANNING FOR THE ART INDUSTRY THAN STEVEN GOLDGLIT AND HIS STAFF AT GOLDGLIT AND COMPANY.

IN THE NEXT LRFA POSTS, STEVEN WILL SHARE HIS EXPERTISE AND EXPERIENCE. WE ALWAYS WELCOME ANY QUESTIONS AND CONCERNS YOU MIGHT WISH TO POSE.

TAKE AIM AND FIRE AWAY!

Welcome to Dallas! with Turon Travel expert, Nicholas Christopher

Dallas Arts District
Master Plan

DALLAS, FOUNDED AND NAMED BY JOHN NEELY BRYAN IN 1841, BEGAN AS A PERMANENT SETTLEMENT NEAR THE TRINITY RIVER AND ROSE TO HISTORICAL PROMINENCE AS THE GATEWAY CITY FOR THE OIL AND COTTON INDUSTRIES. TODAY, DALLAS IS HOME TO A COMMUNITY OF GENEROUS AND DEDICATED ART COLLECTORS AND PATRONS WHO SUPPORT THEIR CULTURAL ORGANIZATIONS AND MUSEUMS WITH A GENEROSITY AS BIG AS THE STATE ITSELF.

THOSE ATTENDING THE DALLAS ART FAIR, APRIL 6th (PREVIEW) THROUGH APRIL 12th, ARE SURE TO ENJOY A WARM WELCOME. THE CITY OF DALLAS FEATURES THE LARGEST CONTIGUOUS URBAN ARTS DISTRICT IN THE UNITED STATES AND INCLUDES FIVE CULTURAL CENTERS DESIGNED BY INTERNATIONALLY RECOGNIZED ARCHITECTS  I.M. PEI, RENZO PIANO AND NORMAN FOSTER AND REM KOOLHAAS.

DALLAS IS A GREAT DESTINATION ANY TIME OF YEAR AND THE LRFA BLOG IS DELIGHTED TO WELCOME TRAVEL EXPERT, NICHOLAS CHRISTOPHER, FOUNDER AND PRINCIPAL OF TURON TRAVEL, THE TRAVEL AGENCY TO THE ART WORLD, AS OUR GUIDE. THANK YOU, NICHOLAS!

https://www.turontravel.com/about-us

The 2017 Dallas Art Fair is enjoying its 9th year.  This annual art event anchors the Dallas Art District, the largest arts district in the nation, spanning 68 acres and 19 contiguous blocks. The district is comprised of museums, performance halls, corporate offices, residences, restaurants, churches and even a school. The Dallas Art District has been a thirty-year plan in the making and now boast buildings by four Pritzker Prize winning architects within a span of several blocks and also includes significant buildings from as far back as the late 1880s, just 40 years after Dallas was founded.

The 2017 DALLAS ART FAIR, opening on Thursday April 6th and continuing through Sunday, the 9th, will feature prominent national and international art dealers and galleries exhibiting painting, sculpture, works on paper, photography, video, and installation by modern and contemporary artists. As with all successful fairs, Dallas’ arts institutes, galleries and museums put forth new and exciting exhibitions to complement the mission of the fair.

Dallas Art Fair
Preview Gala 2016

This makes for a full week around the Dallas Art Fair with the annual Preview Gala Benefit setting the stage. The Preview Gala benefits the Dallas Museum of Art, Nasher Sculpture Center and Dallas Contemporary, and will offer art patrons and Dallas’ top collectors the opportunity to preview and purchase exhibited works prior to the public opening of the fair.

The Dallas Art Fair venue is conveniently set in a private park located across from the Dallas Museum of Art and the Nasher Sculpture Center.

http://dallasartfair.com/visiting-the-fair/

https://www.dma.org/visit

The Dallas Museum of Art’s collection contains over 24,000 works of art from all cultures and time periods spanning 5,000 years of human creativity. The collection is dynamic; new acquisitions are being added all the time and the galleries are constantly changing. A particularly compelling current DMA exhibition for those attending the Art Fair is entitled Passages in Modern Art: 1946–1996.

Jasper Johns
Device
1961-1962

Taken from the DMA’s acclaimed contemporary collection, this exhibit is a great indicator of the dedication and support of the Dallas art community and includes recent acquisitions, rarely seen works, and newly conserved paintings and sculpture. Art by such iconic artists as Bernd and Hilla Becher, Philip Guston, Jasper Johns, Yayoi Kusama, and Mark Rothko is presented alongside their lesser-known contemporaries.

Yayoi Kusama
Accumulation
1962-1964

https://www.dma.org/art/exhibitions/passages-modern-art-1946-1996

Nasher Sculpture Center by Renzo Piano

The birth and growth of the Raymond and Patsy Nasher Collection started more than 50 years ago. In 1950, the Nashers traveled to Mexico, where they became interested in pre-Columbian art and bought the first works in what would become a sizable collection of objects from ancient Latin America. They soon bought other ethnographic and archaeological works and also acquired a number of important American modernist paintings and prints. Mr. Nasher often credits this early involvement with pre-Columbian and other tribal arts as having whetted the Nashers’ appetite for, and appreciation of, modern three-dimensional works.

Henry Moore
Piece no. 3: Vertebrae 1968
Nasher Sculpture Center

By the late-1960s, the Nashers had made their first significant acquisitions of modern sculpture. These included Jean Arp’s Torso with Buds (1961), two major bronzes by Henry Moore, Three Piece No. 3: Vertebrae (1968) and Two Piece Reclining Figure No.9 (1968, no longer in the Collection), and Barbara Hepworth’s large and powerful Squares with Two Circles (Monolith) (1963, cast 1964). In rapid succession, they went on to acquire works by, among others, Joan Miró, Alexander Calder and Isamu Noguchi.

Pierre Huyghe
La déraison, 2014
Concrete, marble, heating system, water, and plants, 36 ¼ x 97 ¾ x 51 in.

At the Nasher, don’t miss the remarkable installation of two works by Pierre Huyghe, 2017 Nasher Prize Laureate. Huyghe has profoundly expanded the parameters of sculpture through artworks encompassing a variety of materials and disciplines. As part of the celebrations surrounding Nasher Prize, the Nasher Sculpture Center presents two important works by the artist: an active marine ecosystem and a living sculpture.

 

Pierre Huyghe
Untitled, 2013
Live marine ecosystem, aquarium, resin shell

The Arts District is home to many other Arts Institutions all within walking distant of the fair.  There is the Fashion Industry Gallery which also houses the Dallas Art Fair,  along with The Annette Strauss Artist Square, the Belo Mansion/Dallas Bar Association, Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, Dallas Black Dance Theatre, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Dallas Theater Center/Arts District Theater, Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center, and the Trammell & Margaret Crow Collection of Asian Art.  Plenty to see and do during your stay in Dallas.

JOIN US FOR THE NEXT LRFA POST WITH NICHOLAS TO VISIT OTHER ART EXHIBITIONS AND HAVE A DELICIOUS BITE OR TWO ALONG THE WAY!

 

 

Edward Dugmore, Abstract Expressionist inspired by nature

Edward Dugmore: The Sixties
Installation View
Loretta Howard Gallery
through March 25th

THE ROMANTIC MOVEMENT FIRST GAINED MOMENTUM AS AN ART FORM IN FRANCE AND IN BRITAIN IN THE EARLY NINETEENTH CENTURY. IT EMERGED IN RESPONSE TO THE DISILLUSIONMENT ON THE PART OF EUROPEAN INTELLECTUALS WITH THE ENLIGHTENMENT’S ALLEGIANCE TO REASON AND ORDER AND AS AN ARTISTIC RESPONSE TO THE 1789 FRENCH REVOLUTION. DELACROIX’S EMOTIVE NARRATIVE MASTERPIECES AND TURNER’S IDYLLIC LAND AND SEASCAPES EXEMPLIFY THE SENSIBILITY OF THIS PERIOD.

ABSTRACT EXPRESSIONISM, A MOVEMENT THAT FLOURISHED IN NEW YORK IN THE 1950s AND 1960s, HAS MANY PARALLEL HISTORICAL AND AESTHETIC QUALITIES. ABEX DEVELOPED IN RESPONSE TO MORE CEREBRAL CUBIST-INSPIRED MODERNISM AND AS A BY-PRODUCT OF THE EXPANSIONIST NATURE AND GROWTH IN AMERICA FOLLOWING THE VICTORY OF THE ALLIES IN WORLD WAR II.

IN THE ART OF THIS PERIOD, NATURE – WITH ITS UNPREDICTABLE POWER AND VOLATILITY OFFERED AN INSPIRATION TO ARTISTS WHO EMBRACED THE ROMANTIC ASPECT OF ABSTRACT EXPRESSIONISM AS EXPLORED IN INSIGHTFUL ESSAY BY GALLERY DIRECTOR AND ART CRITIC, HOWARD HURST, THAT ACCOMPANIES THE EXHIBITION OF EDWARD DUGMORE: THE SIXTIES.

THE EXHIBITION OF DUNMORE’S PAINTINGS AND WORKS ON PAPER CONTINUES AT LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY, 521 West 26th Street, THROUGH MARCH 25th, AT 521 WEST 26th STREET IN CHELSEA.

http://www.lorettahoward.com/current

Edward Dugmore’s daughter Linda Shannon Dugmore with Edward Dugmore’s student Barnaby Ruhe

THE CATALOGUE ESSAY, PART 2

The romantic impulse to embody nature rather than to simply illustrate it can be traced to a favorite influence of Dugmore’s: the English poet and painter William Blake, who’s own ambition was to render the contemplation of nature as a transformative experience. This belief in the magical properties of nature stems from a lifelong fascination with Native American life and culture. He grew up reading his fathers collection of National Geographic Magazines with wide-eyed admiration. His first trip through the Rockies in 1948 was highlighted by an encounter with the Hopi and Navajo cultures.

Edward Dugmore: The Sixties
Works on paper
Installation view
February 23 – March 25, 2017

His reverence for these cultures, re-ignited during the 1960s, coincided with a broader cultural shift, as artists and intellectuals across the Western world began to look for cultural reference points outside of the Judeo-Christian world.  The bold contours of Aspen Quartet recall the hide of a stretched buffalo, which was the subject of the artists first painting, at the age of seven and which remains an important symbol in various Native American traditions. We are reminded by the reverent tone of this work that the Rockies themselves are a consecrated space, host to the northern most of the four sacred mountains of the Navajo.

EDWARD DUGMORE
Aspen Quartet, 1961
Oil on canvas
69 1/2 x 85 5/8 inches

Equally important were Dugmore’s yearly trips to Mid-Coast Maine, where he and his wife, the photographer Edith Oslund-Dugmore, purchased land in 1954 along with fellow artists Ernie Briggs and Anne Arnold. A selection of ink drawings from the early 1960s highlights the important influence of this environment on the artist’s paintings of the next ten years. The artist sketched the landscape, often times interpreting the evocative silhouette of craggy shorelines and wooded banks through their reflection in the choppy waters that swirled through the areas rivers and rock coves.

EDWARD DUGMORE
Maine #33, 1965
Ink on paper
24 x 19 inches

The forms in these drawings and paintings conjure a vision of the natural landscape that is bound to the power of human experience. The physical world becomes a touchstone and reference point for the inner life of the artist. The foreground melts into the horizon; the sky breaks apart and becomes the floor.

EDWARD DUGMORE
Maine #35, 1965
Ink on paper
19 x 24 inches

MANY THANKS TO LORETTA, HOWARD AND EMILIE AT THE LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY FOR BRINGING THIS EXHIBITION TO THE LRFA BLOG!

AS THE DALLAS ART FAIR OPENS SHORTLY, THE NEXT LRFA POST FEATURES TURON TRAVEL EXPERT, NICHOLAS CHRISTOPHER’S INSIDER SCOOP ON A GREAT ART DESTINATION!

PLEASE JOIN US.

 

EDWARD DUGMORE: THE SIXTIES, ESSAY BY LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY DIRECTOR, HOWARD HURST

EDWARD DUGMORE 1961-R, 1961 Oil on canvas 85 1/4 x 115 1/2 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE
1961-R, 1961
Oil on canvas
85 1/4 x 115 1/2 inches

THE ART OF PUBLISHING TRAVELS AN EVER CHANGING LANDSCAPE AS WE BECOME INCREASINGLY EMBEDDED IN THE DIGITAL WORLD. MANY FACTORS ARE AT WORK: PRODUCTION COSTS, PAPER, INK, PRINTING AND BINDING ARE SIGNIFICANT EXPENSES AND AUTHOR FEES, REPRODUCTION RIGHTS, DESIGN COSTS AND DISTRIBUTION ADD TO THE FINANCIAL BURDEN OF THE TRADITIONAL PUBLICATION. ACCORDING TO A STUDY BY INDEPENDENT JOURNALIST, JUDITH DOBRZYNSKI, WHO WRITES ON CULTURE IN THE ARTS JOURNAL, AS FEW AS 2% OF PEOPLE VISITING A MUSEM EXHIBITION USUALLY BUY THE CATALOGUE.   IN GENERAL, THE WAY IN WHICH WE ABSORB INFORMATION HAS CHANGED RADICALLY FROM PHYSICAL TO DIGITAL.

https://www.artsjournal.com/realcleararts/2010/09/exhibition_catalogues.html

THE UNALTERABLE INTRINSIC VALUE OF DOCUMENTING AN EXHIBITION, WHETHER IN DIGITAL OR PRINTED FORMAT, IS TO MEMORIALIZE ITS CONTENT AND THE CURATORIAL PERSPECTIVE OF THE SHOW.  THESE INSIGHTS PROVIDE A DEEPER UNDERSTANDING OF THE ARTWORK AND THE SCHOLARLY CONTRIBUTION OF AN ESSAY OR ESSAYS OFFERS A FRESH AWARENESS OF AN ARTIST’S SIGNIFICANCE THAT ENRICHES OUR ART HISTORICAL UNDERSTANDING.

THE CATALOGUE ESSAY FOR THE CURRENT EXHIBITION AT THE LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY: EDWARD DUGMORE: THE SIXTIES, DOES JUST THAT. WRITTEN BY GALLERY DIRECTOR, HOWARD HURST, IT INFORMS US ABOUT THE INFLUENCES AT WORK DURING THIS IMPORTANT DECADE OF HIS PICTORIAL CAREER.  THE EXHIBITION CONTINUES THROUGH MARCH 25th AT 521 WEST 26th STREET IN CHELSEA.

http://www.lorettahoward.com

THE LRFA BLOG IS VERY PLEASED TO POST THE ESSAY AND THANK HOWARD HURST FOR HIS CONTRIBUTION.

EDWARD DUGMORE Untitled #12, 1968 Acrylic on paper 15 3/4 x 12 1/2 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE
Untitled #12, 1968
Acrylic on paper
15 3/4 x 12 1/2 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE: THE SIXTIES

When Edward Dugmore arrived in Manhattan in the mid 1950s he helped define a generation of Abstract Expressionist painters who’s legacy is now mythic in scale. This was an inward looking period known for its hard drinking, heated debate and cathartic, frenzied painting.  Dugmore became a ubiquitous figure at the Cedar Street Tavern and the many downtown artist cooperatives that helped define this scene. By 1960 however, the fabric of this milieu had changed. Dugmore’s close friend Clyfford Still left that year to paint in pastoral isolation on his farm in Westminster, Maryland. Willem de Kooning began spending increasingly more time in the rural hamlet of East Hampton before moving there permanently in 1971. Phillip Guston would abandon pure abstraction and take up permanent residence in the Catskill Mountains.

EDWARD DUGMORE Untitled, 1964 Watercolor and pencil on paper 14 x 16 3/4 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE
Untitled, 1964
Watercolor and pencil on paper
14 x 16 3/4 inches

For Dugmore, this decade would also mark an important turning point in his practice. His paintings of the 1960s mark a shift away from the urbanism and introspection of the 1950s. Instead, they capture a sense of openness and reflection as the artist rediscovered the American landscape, in particular the American West and Coastal Maine. These works avoid literal depiction and instead embody the emotional and spiritual impact of the natural world.

EDWARD DUGMORE Untitled, 1964 Watercolor and pencil on paper 14 x 16 3/4 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE
Untitled, 1964
Watercolor and pencil on paper
14 x 16 3/4 inches

For Dugmore, the Rocky Mountains, which he experienced as a visiting artist to the Aspen School of Art in 1961, became a mystic symbol. His paintings from this period stretch themselves out in stark fields of mottled black and white, shot through with sinuous skeins of brilliant color. The resulting silhouettes feel ancient and geological in nature but resist direct recognition. We feel the bodily impact of vast, humbling space and the unknowable force of the wilderness.

Edward Dugmore’s grandson Wolf Bowart and daughter Linda Shannon Dugmore OPENING RECEPTION FEBRUARY 23, 2017

Edward Dugmore’s grandson Wolf Bowart and daughter Linda Shannon Dugmore
OPENING RECEPTION
FEBRUARY 23, 2017

EDWARD DUGMORE: THE SIXTIES, FEBRUARY 23- MARCH 25, AT LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY, 521 West 26th ST, NY

THE AUTHOR

HOWARD HURST, DIRECTOR OF LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY, REGULAR  CONTRIBUTOR TO  hyperallergic.com

HOWARD OBTAINED HIS MASTERS IN CURATORIAL STUDIES AND MUSEUM SCIENCES FROM SETON HALL UNIVERSITY. WHILE IN GRADUATE SCHOOL, HE WORKED AT THE NEW MUSEUM BEFORE BEGINNING HIS CAREER IN NEW YORK AT THE ALAN STONE GALLERY.

Linda Shannon Dugmore and Howard Hurst

Linda Shannon Dugmore and Howard Hurst

 

TO ADD TO YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF DUGMORE’S WORK, HERE IS HOWARD HURST’S CATALOGUE ESSAY FOR DUGMORE’S 2014 RETROSPECTIVE AT THE GALLERY. THIS CATALOGUE FOCUSES ON THE TWO MOST IMMEDIATE AND OBVIOUS CONNECTIONS PEOPLE MAKE TO THE WORK OF EDWARD DUGMORE, THAT OF HIS TEACHER THOMAS HART BENTON AND HIS TEACHER AND FRIEND, CLYFFORD STILL.

ANCIENT EVENINGS: A RETROSPECTIVE OF EDWARD DUGMORE, LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY, APRIL 2014

Revisiting Abstract Expressionism: Edward Dugmore, opening tonight at Loretta Howard Gallery

EDWARD DUGMORE 1961 B-3, 1961 Oil on canvas 95 1/2 x 83 1/4 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE
1961 B-3, 1961
Oil on canvas
95 1/2 x 83 1/4 inches

ABSTRACT EXPRESSIONISM, AN IMPORTANT AND INTRINSICALLY AMERICAN ART MOVEMENT DOMINANT IN THE 50s AND 60s,  ESTABLISHED AMERICA AS THE CREATIVE AND INTELLECTUAL CENTER OF THE POST-WORLD WAR II ART WORLD. ITS SPONTANEITY, EMOTIVE MAGNETISM AND ENERGETIC SPIRIT EXEMPLIFIED AMERICA’S GREAT ECONOMICAL AND CULTURAL POST-WAR BOOM.

WHILE THE CIRCLE OF FIRST GENERATION OF ABEX ARTISTS IS ETCHED IN OUR ART HISTORICAL LEXICON, A SIGNIFICANT GROUP OF SECOND GENERATION ABEX ARTISTS ALSO MERITS RECOGNITION AND CRITICAL ACCLAIM.  EDWARD DUGMORE, AN ABSTRACT PAINTER WITH TIES TO BOTH COASTS, WAS REPRESENTED BY THE DISTINGUISHED STABLE GALLERY IN NEW YORK IN THE 50s, HOWARD WISE IN THE 60s, AND GREEN MOUNTAIN GALLERY IN THE 70s. AS A STUDENT AT CAL ARTS UNDER THE GUIDANCE OF ABSTRACT EXPRESSIONIST MASTER, CLYFFORD STILL, DUGMORE ALSO ENJOYED A PRESENCE IN THE WEST COAST ART WORLD.


lorhow_sf
LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY, LOCATED IN A BEAUTIFUL GROUND FLOOR SPACE IN CHELSEA AT 521 WEST 26th STREET, SPECIALIZES IN CLASSIC POST WAR AMERICAN ART WITH AN EMPHASIS ON ARTISTS WHO CAME INTO PROMINENCE IN THE 1950s AND 1960s. http://lorettahoward.com/about

IN THE SPRING OF 2014, THE GALLERY CURATED AN IMPORTANT RETROSPECTIVE OF WORKS BY  DUGMORE, ANCIENT EVENINGS: A RETROSPECTIVE OF EDWARD DUGMORE, FEATURING PAINTINGS FROM EACH DECADE THAT TRACED THE ARTIST’S CREATIVE TRAJECTORY OF MORE THAN 50 YEARS.

http://lorettahoward.com/content/ancient-evenings-retrospective-edward-dugmore

maxresdefault

 

GALLERY INTELL/YOU TUBE INTERVIEW WITH LORETTA HOWARD, May 29, 2014

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCMeTl-dWVw

 

THE LRFA BLOG IS DELIGHTED TO FEATURE LORETTA HOWARD’S  FORTHCOMING EXHIBITION, EDWARD DUGMORE: THE SIXTIES, AN EXHIBIT CURATED FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF THE ARTIST’S RELATIONSHIP TO THE AMERICAN WEST. FOR EVERYONE NOW IN NEW YORK, OR ARRIVING SHORTLY FOR THE FORTHCOMING AUCTIONS AND ART FAIRS: ADAA’s ART SHOW  AT THE PARK AVENUE ARMORY, http://www.artdealers.org/ AND THE ARMORY SHOW AT NAVY PIERS. https://www.thearmoryshow.com/,

THE EDWARD DUGMORE  EXHIBITION AT LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY OPENS TONIGHT, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 23rd AND CONTINUES THROUGH SATURDAY, MARCH 25th, 2017.

http://lorettahoward.com/content/edward-dugmore-7

 

EDWARD DUGMORE Aspen Quartet, 1961 Oil on canvas 69 1/2 x 85 5/8 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE
Aspen Quartet, 1961
Oil on canvas
69 1/2 x 85 5/8 inches

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Edward Dugmore: The 1960s

February 23 – March 25, 2017

Opening Reception: February 23, 6 – 8 pm

Loretta Howard Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of major canvases by Edward Dugmore from the 1960s. The works on display trace the artist’s engagement with the American West. This affinity developed at an early age in part from an interest in Native American life that began while looking through his fathers National Geographic magazines.

The 1960s marked a period during which the artist turned his field of vision away from the city and mined visual representation for inspiration. For Dugmore, the Rocky Mountains, which he experienced as a visiting artist to the Aspen school of Art in 1961, became a mystic symbol. Dugmore’s mountainous topographies avoid direct visual reference instead embodying the tectonic drama of the landscape as a catalyst for spiritual reflection. This romantic impulse can be traced to English poet and painter William Blake who’s own ambition was to render the contemplation of nature as a transformative experience.

EDWARD DUGMORE Maine #35, 1965 Ink on paper 19 x 24 inches

EDWARD DUGMORE
Maine #35, 1965
Ink on paper
19 x 24 inches

Equally important were Dugmore’s yearly trips to Washington, Maine, where he and his wife purchased land in 1960 along with fellow artists Ernie Briggs and Anne Arnold. A selection of ink drawings from the early 1960s highlights the important influence of this environment on the artist’s paintings of the next ten years. Dugmore sketched, often times interpreting the landscape through its reflection in the Medomak River and nearby saltwater coves.

THE NEXT LRFA POST FEATURES EXCERPTS FROM AN INSIGHTFUL ESSAY ON THE CURRENT EXHIBITION BY HOWARD HURST, DIRECTOR AT LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY AND CONTRIBUTING WRITER AT HYPERALLERGIC.

MANY THANKS TO LORETTA AND HER GALLERY TEAM FOR SHARING THIS EXHIBITION WITH US.

The art market, present and future, with Phillips post-war and contemporary expert, Robert Manley

 

Edward Dolman, second from left, chairman and chief executive of Phillips, with, from left, the house’s art experts Jean-Paul Engelen, Robert Manley and Scott Nussbaum. Credit Alex Welsh for The New York Times

Edward Dolman, second from left, chairman and chief executive of Phillips, with, from left, the house’s art experts Jean-Paul Engelen, Robert Manley and Scott Nussbaum.
Credit Alex Welsh for The New York Times

NEWS OF ONE OF MANY MAJOR SHIFTS IN THE AUCTION WORLD POSTED IN AUGUST, 2015, IN THE ART INDUSTRY’S NEWSLETTER,  JOSH BAER’S BAER FAXT,  ANNOUNCING THE DEPARTURE TO PHILLIPS AUCTION HOUSE OF CHRISTIE’S SPECIALISTS, JEAN-PAUL ENGELEN (POST WAR AND CONTEMPORARY ART, CURATOR OF PUBLIC ART AT THE QATAR MUSEUM), HUGUES JOFFRE  (19th AND 20th CENTURY ART) AND ROBERT MANLEY  (DEPUTY CHAIR, POST WAR AND CONTEMPORARY ART). WITH THIS TRIUMVIRATE IN PLACE, PHILLIPS MADE ANOTHER LARGE STRIDE AWAY FROM ITS EARLIER MONIKER, “THE THIRD AUCTION HOUSE”, TOWARDS BECOMING TODAY’S POWERHOUSE WITH A GLOBAL PRESENCE.

HAND-PICKED FROM SOTHEBY’S AND CHRISTIE’S, PHILLIPS HAS OFFERED MANY SPECIALISTS FROM THOSE VENERABLE HOUSES THE PROSPECT OF JOINING A TEAM HEADED BY EX-CHRISTIE’S AUCTION VETERAN, ED DOLMAN, CEO AT PHILLIPS SINCE 2014, AND THE OPPORTUNITY TO SHAPE A NEW PLATFORM FOCUSING ON THE TASTES AND VIEWPOINT OF THE CURRENT CONTEMPORARY COLLECTOR.

http://www.artnews.com/2015/03/24/ed-dolman-at-phillips-auction-house/

Edward Dolman CEO Phillips

Edward Dolman
CEO Phillips

Dolman’s years at Christie’s coincided with a sea change in collecting habits. “The profile of the collector when I started in this business was someone fairly late in life who had gotten interested in a niche market and would spend 10 to 15 years building that collection,” he said. “But now the profile is completely different. They are much younger, they have much more money to spend, and they want to put together a collection a lot more quickly. They’re a little more impatient, and the supply problem is solved by the contemporary market.”

https://news.artnet.com/market/phillips-three-hires-christies-323427

IT IS A PRIVILEGE FOR THE LRFA BLOG TO CONTINUE ITS DIALOGUE WITH ROBERT MANLEY, DEPUTY CHAIR AT PHILLIPS, WHOSE UNDERSTANDING OF THE ART AND AUCTION MARKETS AND HIS DEEP RAPPORT WITH COLLECTORS BOTH ESTABLISHED AND NASCENT, SETS A HIGH STANDARD.

Robert Manley and Jean-Paul Engelen Phillips’ Worldwide Co-Heads of 20th Century & Contemporary Art

Robert Manley and Jean-Paul Engelen
Phillips’ Worldwide Co-Heads of 20th Century & Contemporary Art

ROBERT, WHAT DO YOU ANTICIPATE WILL BE THE EFFECT OF THE CORRECTION THAT IS TAKING PLACE IN THE ART MARKET? IN WHAT WAYS, CAN COLLECTORS PROTECT THE VALUE OF THEIR COLLECTIONS DURING THESE SHIFTS IN THE MARKET?

I don’t see much effect of the so-called correction on any area of the market, with the exception of works over $20 million. And even in that heady territory, there is still demand, just not quite as deep. The market is alive and well although maybe a bit of the froth has subsided. You might have to fight a tiny bit less for certain works and your place on the waiting list at a top gallery might be a little bit shorter, but fundamentally, things haven’t changed much.

I try to maintain the same outlook whether it is a down market or an up market. At the risk of lapsing into an extended art world cliché, you should buy the things you love and buy as well as you can. It’s also important to put together a collection that has some themes or some kind of focus, that make it more than the sum of its parts. Get some good advice from people you trust, like Leslie Rankow for instance!

BANKSY Submerged Phone Booth 2006 Phillips London Evening Sale October 2014

BANKSY
Submerged Phone Booth
2006
Phillips London Evening Sale October 2014

One important thing to do is decide on personal financial thresholds for your collection. Under a certain amount, you should be buying purely for the love of it, and with no hope or expectation of resale or appreciation of value. Above a certain amount, you expect a work to maintain its value, which in effect, makes it more of an “investment”.  

I hate talking about art as an investment, but if you want to protect the value in your art collection, the best way to do that is to avoid putting yourself in the position of having to sell something quickly. Most quality works of art by established artists can be sold at a price that is commensurate with its quality, if you have a long enough time horizon.

The best investment advice for art is…don’t invest in art. Invest in things that make you lots of money, and then your reward is the art you buy with it. The joy you get from it is your dividend, and if it goes up in value, it’s icing on the cake. Like any form of investing, it’s a pursuit for professionals. It’s a hard business to thrive in, with high opportunity costs and massive capital risk, so I wouldn’t recommend it unless you want to make it your full-time occupation.

Interior view Phillips Auction House, London

Interior view
Phillips Auction House, London

THAT IS VERY GOOD ADVICE.

WHAT IS PARTICULARLY EXCITING ABOUT JOINING PHILLIPS AND WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR GOALS AND RESPONSIBILITIES?

It was a great year on garden leave but I very much looked forward to joining Phillips. I am working side by side with Jean-Paul Engelen, providing strategic planning and vision for the Contemporary department worldwide. Most of my time is spent doing the same things I’ve always been doing, working with top clients and important works of art. Essentially I’ve been doing the same thing for about 26 years, but it never gets old because there are always new things to learn, and great collections to see.

The new challenge I welcome very much is working with Jean-Paul and CEO Ed Dolman, and many others, to create a strong team mentality, with complete trust and transparency. Phillips has put together an incredible team, some of the best and most experienced from all of the top auction houses, in all of the fields that matter to Phillips. The shareholders of Phillips are passionate art collectors themselves, have a long-term vision and are willing to invest in it. We have some innovative ideas about how we are going to organize our auctions and reach into new markets…at a smaller company like Phillips, we can do things that are impossible at a larger corporation. I’m very bullish on the contemporary art market in general and feel Phillips is positioned like no other company to play a leadership role in it.

Phillips New York

Phillips New York

ROBERT, THIS WAS SUCH A VALUABLE CONTRIBUTION TO THE LRFA BLOG. SO MANY THANKS!

IN THE NEXT POST, THE LRFA BLOG IS DELIGHTED TO VISIT THE LORETTA HOWARD GALLERY IN CHELSEA. THE GALLERY SPECIALIZES IN CLASSIC POST-WAR AMERICAN ART WITH AN EMPHASIS ON ARTISTS WHO CAME INTO PROMINENCE IN THE 1950s AND  1960s.  THE FORTHCOMING SOLO EXHIBITION OF MAJOR CANVASES BY EDWARD DUGMORE FROM THE !960s OPENS ON THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 23rd AND CONTINUES THROUGH MARCH 25th, AT 521 WEST 26th STREET, IN CHELSEA, NEW YORK.

UNTIL THEN, THANKS FOR FOLLOWING THE LRFA BLOG!

 

The hierarchy of the auction world with Robert Manley, Deputy Chair of Phillips

auctions-1

THE FIRST RECORDED AUCTION ACTIVITY TOOK PLACE IN GREECE IN 500 BC WHERE WOMEN WERE AUCTIONED OFF AS BRIDES BY THEIR FAMILIES. ACCORDING TO THE RESEARCH POSTED IN THE TELEGRAPH, IN A BLOG BY CHARLOTTE ZAJICEK, IN OCTOBER 2016, THE ROMANS, AS WELL, WERE ACTIVELY INVOLVED IN THE AUCTION PROCESS, REGULARLY SELLING OFF THE SPOILS OF WAR, SLAVES AND DEBTORS’ HOLDINGS BY THIS MEANS.

Roman Slavery Auctions

Roman Slavery Auctions

AFTER A LULL OF SEVERAL CENTURIES, THE AUCTION HOUSE, IN A FORM SIMILAR TODAY, BEGAN TO MULTIPLY, THE FIRST, THE STOCKHOLM AUCTION HOUSE APPEARING IN 1674, FOLLOWED BY SOTHEBY’S, FOUNDED IN 1744 AND THEN CHRISTIE’S, IN 1766.  IN RECENT DECADES, MODERN TECHNOLOGY HAS TRANSFORMED THE PROCESS OF AUCTIONING, INITIALLY WITH THE INTRODUCTION OF TELEPHONE BIDDING AND AND CURRENTLY REVOLUTIONIZING THE AUCTION PROCESS WITH ONLINE AUCTIONS DURING A PERIOD WHEN THE CONTEMPORARY ART MARKET HAS EXPLODED TO A FULLY GLOBAL SCOPE.

Online auction

Online auction

TODAY, THE LRFA BLOG WELCOMES BACK ROBERT MANLEY, DEPUTY CHAIR AND WORLDWIDE CO-HEAD OF POST WAR AND CONTEMPORARY ART AT PHILLIPS, FOR A DETAILED ANALYSIS OF THE AUCTION HOUSE DEPARTMENT HIERARCHY, FORM AND FUNCTION. THANK YOU, ROBERT, FOR TAKING THE TIME TO JOIN US!

HOW DOES CHRISTIE’S STRUCTURE ITS DEPARTMENTS? WHAT ARE THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF A JUNIOR SPECIALIST, SENIOR SPECIALIST AND DEPARTMENT HEAD?

At the top, you have the International Head (or Co-Heads) who provides the vision and overall direction of the department worldwide. Then there are the local Heads of Department in New York and London, who report into the International Head. Then there are Sale Heads: Evening sale, Day Sale, Off-season (such as First Open), and Online sales. These Sale Heads are in charge of virtually every decision related to their sale, and they report into the local Department Heads. Junior specialists/cataloguers generally report to Sale Heads. 

imgres

Then there are various senior colleagues who report to International Heads, who work on various important deals and assist important clients. We also had a separate Private sale department within the department, with its own team of specialists and administrators. This was the general structure about 1 year ago. In many ways, all specialists do the same things—we work on appraisals, price and evaluate artwork, help bring in business, help manage consignments, and work with collectors and dealers when it comes to buying and selling art.

Working side by side with the International Heads and Department Heads are Business Managers, who make sure everything runs smoothly and help manage everything on a day to day basis. They are the unsung heroes of the departments, in some ways, along with the various administrators who help manage the mountains of paperwork and logistics.

891b5fbe-944e-11e5-9fb8-d653e0e6771e-1

HOW MUCH INVOLVEMENT DID YOU AND YOUR TEAM HAVE IN THE WRITING OF THE CATALOGUE LOT NOTES, A RICH AND HUGELY ACADEMIC CONTRIBUTION NOT JUST TO THE SALE BUT TO THE UNDERSTANDING AND KNOWLEDGE OF THE LOTS COMING UP FOR SALE.

When I started in 2000, the specialists on the team wrote all of the notes. I wrote a fair amount of the Evening sale essays in my first 6 years at Christie’s and it was an important part of my learning experience. I remember on more than one occasion, being at Christie’s at 3AM as we were finishing the Evening sale catalogue, and having Brett Gorvy (the International Head of Christie’s) ask me to write or rewrite a quick catalogue note. The catalogue deadline period is a bit like being in graduate school, and working insanely long hours was (and still is) a regular occurrence.

I forget the exact date but it wasn’t until about 2008 or so that we finally hired a proper full-time writer…by the time I left, we had a small team of writers (and a pool of freelancers) writing most of the essays. Brett Gorvy was a writer before he joined Christie’s and he took the texts and catalogues very seriously, obsessing about the comparables we would use, and the catalogue layout. He wrote many of the texts himself and still writes on the things that are important to him. In this regard, he was very much an inspiration and I learned a great deal from him.

WHAT IS THE PROCESS IN TERMS OF CONSIGNING WORK FOR SALE? HOW DOES THE SELECTION PROCESS OF WHICH SALE WOULD BENEFIT THE CONSIGNEE THE MOST TAKE PLACE?

Another great question, impossible to answer quickly. It really depends on the object. For 90% of the works, the choice is clear—all sales have a general band of minimum and maximum values and most artists have a clear track record of having performed well in those venues. And as I said before, my personal philosophy is that the auction estimate is what matters, more than the venue.

But there are situations in which a work of art can arguably be put in more than one sale and that is a decision that is generally made by a Sale Head. When it involves an Evening sale, the Sale Head typically gets input from their senior colleagues. We treat one-off consignments differently than a collection. You might not put a $100,000 Warhol in an Evening sale, but if it comes in with a nice group of higher value Pop Art, you might.

andy_warhol_christies_triple_elvis

There is also an intangible quality, a bit hard to define, but you are looking to put as many “special” works as possible in the Evening sale. Unlike a day sale, you can only have a finite number of works in an Evening sale and since it is the only Sale that the press will cover, it needs to be both interesting and commercially successful.

Personally, I think the distinction between an “Evening sale lot” and a “Day sale lot” is a false one. Every situation is different. I remember putting some great works by the Canadian Color Field painter, Jack Bush, into an off-season sale in July 2013 (from the collection of Andy Williams)…a move that some people in the trade were second-guessing. The three works in the sale remain three of the four highest prices ever paid for the artist, including the current world record, which sold for over $600,000 against an estimate of $30-50,000!

Jack Bush Red Side Right (Right Side Red) 1965

Jack Bush
Red Side Right (Right Side Red) 1965

YOU REACHED THE STATUS OF DEPUTY CHAIRMAN AT CHRISTIE’S PRIOR TO YOUR DEPARTURE? WHAT WERE THE RESPONSIBILITIES IN THAT ROLE AND IN THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE ON WHICH YOU SERVED FOR THE INTERNATIONAL POST-WAR AND CONTEMPORARY DEPARTMENT?

Essentially I did the same job I always did…working with top clients on top consignments. The only difference was that on the Executive Committee (and other committees I served on), I was involved with the strategic planning and overall vision of the department.

THE ART MARKET ENTERED A CORRECTION PHASE AT LEAST TWO YEARS AGO, AND WITH EACH PASSING SEASON OF AUCTION RESULTS, CONTINUES ITS REVISIONIST TREND. ROBERT MANLEY IS CERTAINLY ONE OF THE MOST EXPERIENCED AND SEASONED VETERANS OF THE AUCTION WORLD AND, IN OUR NEXT POST, THE LRFA BLOG IS VERY PLEASED TO HAVE HIM AS OUR GUIDE.

PLEASE JOIN US!

 

 

The art of auction with Robert Manley, Deputy Chair at Phillips

Christie's London: Robert Manley and colleague with Ed Ruscha's 'Mint (Red)' (R) and Willem de Kooning's 'Untitled XVII' (C)

ANDY WILLIAMS: AN AMERICAN LEGEND Robert Manley and colleague with Ed Ruscha’s ‘Mint (Red)’ (R) and Willem de Kooning’s ‘Untitled XVII’ (C)

A SINGLE OWNER SALE AT AUCTION OFTEN REPRESENTS A LIFETIME OF COLLECTING, A FIERCE COMMITMENT AND DEDICATION TO A PERIOD OF ART,  A PASSIONATE UNENDING SEARCH, ATTENDING AUCTIONS, ART FAIRS, AND GALLERIES, VACUUMING UP KNOWLEDGE FROM EVERY DEALER, SPECIALIST AND CURATOR. EACH AUCTION HOUSE COMPETES AGGRESSIVELY  FOR A SIGNIFICANT ESTATE OR COLLECTION OFFERING GUARANTEES, PREMIUM CATALOGUE PLACEMENT, SOMETIMES A SEPARATE PUBLICATION, AS WELL AS EVENTS PREVIEWING THE WORK, TRAVELING HIGHLIGHTS TO THEIR RESPECTIVE AUCTION HOUSES AROUND THE WORLD.

THE PASSION OF THE COLLECTOR RESONATES IN A SINGLE OWNER SALE, SUCH AS CHRISTIE’S ANDY WILLIAMS: AN AMERICAN LEGEND.

In addition to music, Williams’s other great passion was art. His collecting philosophy was based on exemplary connoisseurship – taking time to study an artist’s oeuvre and buying only the best examples… with special emphasis on artists working in New York and Los Angeles, some of whom he knew: de Kooning (a favorite), Hofmann, Diebenkorn, Kline, Noland, Ruscha, Motherwell, Oldenburg and Basquiat. ‘I could not imagine a life without paintings,’ he once admitted. ‘I look at my paintings every day… I could not imagine a room without art.’

Damien HIrst: Magnificent Obsession Barbican Art Gallery, London

Damien HIrst: Magnificent Obsession
Barbican Art Gallery, London

THE ARTIST DAMIEN HIRST HAS BEEN AN IMPASSIONED COLLECTOR SINCE CHILDHOOD. IN THE BARBICAN EXHIBIT, MAGNIFICENT OBSESSIONS: THE ARTIST AS COLLECTOR, HIRST SPEAKS ABOUT HIS COLLECTION OF SKULLS, TAXIDERMY AND MEDICAL MODELS AS

…reminders of what life is, and what it might be or will end up being. A collection is deeply personal, and says so much about who the collector is, and what they believe in or are afraid of, but I think it also inevitably ends up speaking of many fundamental and universal truths.

 

DURING HIS 16-YEAR TENURE AT CHRISTIE’S, ROBERT MANLEY, FORMER DEPUTY CHAIR OF THEIR POST-WAR AND CONTEMPORARY DEPARTMENT, LED SEVERAL OF THE HIGHEST-GROSSING SALES IN AUCTION HISTORY. HE WORKED CLOSELY WITH MANY OF OUR MOST PRESTIGIOUS COLLECTORS AND BROUGHT THEIR WORK TO THE MARKET AS HE CONTINUES TO DO SO AS DEPUTY CHAIR OF PHILLIPS.

THE LRFA BLOG IS PLEASED TO CONTINUE ITS DIALOGUE WITH AUCTION EXPERT, ROBERT MANLEY, ON THE ART OF AUCTION.

 

Robert Manley with Warhol's Silver Liz Looking Forward to the Past 11 May 2015, New York

Robert Manley with
Warhol’s Silver Liz
Looking Forward to the Past
11 May 2015, New York

YOU ARE KNOWN AS A “RAINMAKER”, AND JUSTIFIABLY SO. HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE THAT MONIKER?

I take that as a compliment, but I’m not comfortable with these kinds of descriptions, there is far too much ego in it. I know full well that a fair amount of the business that I’ve done has been a result of my being at the leading contemporary auction house. At the end of the day, the focus should be on the art, the artists, the collectors and the dealers (in that order)…auction house “rainmakers” should be near the bottom of the attention-getting food chain. 

I think of myself as an advisor of sorts, someone who helps people with making smart decisions when it comes to building their collections. If you build trust and confidence with people, they will think of you when it comes time to sell. I also get a fair amount of referral business from people I’ve worked closely with.  Most of the “rain” that I’ve made has come from people who I’ve worked with over the years.

Robert Manley & Leslie Rankow Evening Sale Preview Christie's New York 2010

Robert Manley & Leslie Rankow
Evening Sale Preview
Christie’s New York 2010

 

I admire truly experienced art advisors, who understand the business, know the history behind things and the market. In some ways, people like you are how I model everything I do and that’s not a facile compliment.

IN AN INDUSTRY THAT IS HIGHLY COMPETITIVE, WHAT GUIDANCE DO YOU GIVE A COLLECTOR IN TERMS OF HIS OR HER EXPECTATIONS WHEN CONSIGNING A WORK? AT AUCTION, CATALOGUE PLACEMENT, SALE PLACEMENT, PRIVATE SALES VS. AUCTION, TO NAME A FEW CONSIDERATIONS THAT COME TO MIND.

That is an excellent question, and one could write a book with the answer. I hate to generalize, but I know from experience that the most important thing is that the work must have a sensible and attractive estimate. The rest is essentially window dressing. If you are working with a knowledgeable auction specialist or advisor, put your trust in them and more often than not, you’ll be rewarded with a successful outcome. Don’t be seduced by aggressive estimates.

Regarding private sale versus auction for contemporary art, it really depends on the object, but in general, I think auction houses thrive best with classic examples by big name artists. In general, auction houses are not set up to handle private sales for works of art under $250,000 and they have little success with artworks that are atypical or by artists who don’t have a strong track record.  

imgres-1

One increasingly smart option for collectors is to get both auction and private sale options from an auction house, what we call a “rollover” consignment … an object is consigned for a limited period of time for private sale, and if it doesn’t sell, it immediately goes to auction. In this scenario, consigning a lower priced artwork to an auction house makes sense for all parties concerned.

For a large percentage of the art that is in search of a home, an auction house is not the best place for it. A good auction specialist refers plenty of business to dealers who are better equipped and more knowledgeable about a particular artist. I would rather give clients the best advice, even if it means some business goes elsewhere.  

Jackson Pollock Christie's, 2004

Jackson Pollock
Christie’s, 2004

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE SALES THAT YOU CONSIDER THE MOST SIGNIFICANT?

In 2004, Christie’s had the first Contemporary Auction that surpassed $100 million…we had a great Pollock work on paper from MoMA that sold for a world record price for the artist of around $10 million. We all thought there probably would never be another $100 million Contemporary sale, at least not for many years (anyone who tells you otherwise is lying). Little did we know that it would be the beginning of an incredible bull run in the contemporary market, in which every season would be more valuable than the next.

POST-WAR & CONTEMPORARY EVENING SALE SALE 2785 New York, Rockefeller Center 15 May 2013

POST-WAR & CONTEMPORARY EVENING SALE
SALE 2785
New York, Rockefeller Center
15 May 2013

One important landmark was Christie’s May 2013 Post-War and Contemporary Evening sale auction. At $495 million, it which was the highest value sale of its kind, anywhere, in any category. Previously, all of the top value auctions were Impressionist and Modern sales. Now that the contemporary department had surpassed that, it was clear there would be no going back. The disparity between the Contemporary and Impressionist and Modern sales would increasingly grow with each passing season. This isn’t because one market was better or stronger, but simply there wasn’t enough supply of great Impressionist and Modern works.

Henry Darger At Sunbeam Creek/At Wickey Sansia Christie's New York: January 27, 2003 20th Century Self-Taught and Outsider Art

Henry Darger
At Sunbeam Creek/At Wickey Sansia
Christie’s New York: January 27, 2003
20th Century Self-Taught and Outsider Art

One sale that was lower value, but as meaningful as any I was involved with, was the Outsider Art auction that I curated for Christie’s in 2003. Consisting mostly of works from the incomparable Robert Greenberg collection, it was the first standalone outsider auction at an international auction house. I somehow squeezed this project in, in-between my working 80 hours a week at Christie’s East on the 20th Art sales.

Clyfford Still 1947-R-no. 1 Post War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale, November 2006 5,000,000 - 7,000,000 USD Sold 21,296,000 USD Premium

Clyfford Still
1947-R-no. 1
Post War and Contemporary Art Evening Sale, November 2006
5,000,000 – 7,000,000 USD
Sold 21,296,000 USD Premium

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE SPECIFIC WORKS AND/OR COLLECTIONS THAT WERE THE MOST OUTSTANDING DURING THE TIME YOU HEADED THE POST-WAR AND CONTEMPORARY SALES?

One of the most memorable experiences was a consignment of a painting by the Abstract Expressionist painter Clyfford Still. Dating from 1947, dramatically painted in red and black, and in the same collection for over 40 years, the painting had all of the fire and jagged energy that you could ask for. It was truly as good a painting as you would ever get on the market, and since the artist sold few works in his lifetime (with the rest locked up in a trust), it was extremely rare. The deal was still being done on July 30, 2006, and as my fiancée was walking down the aisle, I remember taking the call from the consignor (I kept the call brief!). I worked on the deal throughout my entire honeymoon. Estimated at $5-7 million, it sold for over $21 million, a world record at the time.

Right: Collector Anita Kahn with Christie's Robert Manley (Photo: Sarah Thornton)

Right: Collector Anita Kahn with Christie’s Robert Manley
(Photo: Sarah Thornton)

I will also never forget working with Andy Williams and Anita Kahn, and bringing their collections to market when they died. It was bittersweet selling the works of two good friends, but I knew that I honored their collection and their memory in a way that few people could have. The auction results were astonishingly good, both between $70-$100 million, which is a testament to their eye and their passion. 

IN OUR NEXT LRFA POST, ROBERT WILL DESCRIBE THE ENORMOUS SCOPE AND SCALE OF FOCUS AND DEDICATION THAT A SIGNIFICANT POSITION IN THE AUCTION WORLD DEMANDS. ROBERT IS PASSIONATE ABOUT HIS WORK AND ABOUT ART AND HERE TO ANSWER YOUR QUESTIONS ABOUT THE ROLE OF AUCTION SPECIALIST!

Transitions: from gallery to auction, with Phillips Deputy Chair Robert Manley

Thomas Hart Benton America Today Metropolitan Museum of Art

Thomas Hart Benton
America Today
Metropolitan Museum of Art

AS THE ART MARKET, PARTICULARLY FOR POST-WAR AND CONTEMPORARY WORKS,  HAS REACHED MONOLITHIC PROPORTIONS AND CONSEQUENTLY ENORMOUS PUBLIC ATTENTION, MANY COLLECTORS WHEN DEACCESSIONING WORKS HAVE GRAVITATED TO THE DISCRETIONARY ADVANTAGES OF A PRIVATE SALE. NOW, AS WE FACE A CORRECTION IN THE ART MARKET, MORE COLLECTORS WILL UNDOUBTEDLY SEEK THE PRIVATE SALE SECTOR BE IT AT AUCTION, A GALLERY OR PRIVATE DEALER,  TO PROTECT THE WORKS THEY ARE INTERESTED IN SELLING.

WHEN THE MARKET SLOWS AND COLLECTORS AND AUCTION SPECIALISTS ARE ANALYZING THE BEST VENUE FOR THE SALE OF A WORK, GALLERY EXPERIENCE IS INVALUABLE IN DEVELOPING THE SKILL AND COUNSELING REQUIRED WHEN WORKING INTIMATELY WITH CLIENTS IN THE DECISION-MAKING PROCESS.

ROBERT MANLEY, DEPUTY CHAIR  AND WORLDWIDE CO-HEAD OF 20th CENTURY AND CONTEMPORARY ART AT PHILLIPS AUCTION HOUSE, BRINGS BOTH THE THE GALLERY EXPERIENCE THAT ENCOURAGES LONG-TERM RELATIONSHIPS WITH COLLECTORS AND THE AUCTION EXPERTISE THAT  OFFERS A PROFOUND KNOWLEDGE OF THE MARKET  AND CONTACTS WITH PRIVATE COLLECTORS WORLD-WIDE.

ROBERT, THANK YOU FOR OUR CONTINUED DIALOGUE.

DID YOU WORK WITH OTHER GALLERIES BEFORE YOU JOINED THE AUCTION WORLD? IF SO, WHICH GALLERIES AND WHAT DID THEY FOCUS UPON?

I also worked at ACA Gallery in New York, an art gallery with a rich history that dated back over 70 years. They focused on American Art, especially Social Realism, and had a number of important exhibitions over their storied history, from Joseph Cornell to Romare Bearden…

 

Romare Bearden The Block Metropolitan Museum of Art

Romare Bearden
The Block
Metropolitan Museum of Art

I remember mounting a show of tribal art from Papua, New Guinea in 1989…the Bergens (Sidney, Jonathan and Jeffrey) were always open to new possibilities.

Headdress: Serpent (a-Mantsho-ña-Tshol) 19th–20th century Guinea, Niger River region

Headdress: Serpent (a-Mantsho-ña-Tshol)
19th–20th century
Guinea, Niger River region

I spent a number of formative years at the aforementioned Luise Ross Gallery, which specialized in the work of a number of lesser known Abstract Expressionists (like Herman Cherry and Kimber Smith), as well as Outsider Art/Art Brut. At all of the galleries I worked at, we also had compelling shows of living artists who were mostly living and working in New York.

Herman Cherry 10 Cooper Square Studio 1968

Herman Cherry
10 Cooper Square Studio
1968

WHAT WERE YOUR PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES WITHIN THE GALLERY STRUCTURE? WHICH ASPECTS OF GALLERY MANAGEMENT APPEALED TO YOU THE MOST?

Like most art galleries, especially the modest-sized ones where I worked, it was all hands on deck…I did everything from sweep the floors to curate exhibitions (and I did much more of the former than the latter in the beginning). The first show I curated was a historical survey of voyeurism called “Peep Show”, which included everything from Ray Johnson to Indian Miniatures to Picasso. I will never forget the thrill of reading Holland Cotter’s sympathetic review of it in the NY Times.

http://www.nytimes.com/1998/07/10/arts/art-in-review-peep-show.html

What I enjoyed most about the business were the dialogues at the gallery. They all revolved around the issues of art, the ideas behind them, their presentation, as well as trying to figure out how to place them in the best collections and getting writers and curators interested in our program. I was utterly broke, but it was a very rewarding and engaging time. Although I didn’t realize it at the time, my first year in the art world, 1990, was when the market crashed and it would take about 10 years to recover.

WHEN DID YOU JOIN CHRISTIE’S AND IN WHAT POSITION? WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO LEARN ANOTHER ASPECT OF THE ART WORLD?

I joined Christie’s East on June 19, 2000 as the Head of the Twentieth Century Art department. Christie’s East sold the lower value works, the equivalent of Christie’s South Kensington today (or back in the day, what Sotheby’s called their “Arcade” sales).  I was overseeing both the Impressionist and Modern Art sales and the Post-War and Contemporary offerings. This sounds a bit lofty, but the works were valued mostly under $10,000 and the entire “department” consisted of me and a stellar Administrator, Aviva Geller, without whom I would have never survived. I catalogued, researched and sold over 1,000 artworks a year and estimated three times that many.

Christie's 20 Rockefeller Center

Christie’s
20 Rockefeller Center

Gallery owners, especially throughout the 1990s when the art world was much smaller, were very much the kings of their castle and they made virtually every meaningful decision. This made it hard for the people who worked for them to grow and develop. There were few directors that had much autonomy to curate exhibitions and there were limited travel opportunities. At the time, working in an auction house gave you much more freedom and autonomy.

Most importantly, I wanted to join an auction house because of the new learning opportunities. At a gallery, you learn everything there is to know about a relatively small number of artists in the gallery stable…whereas in an auction, you need to learn something—fast–about every significant artist of your period. And in the contemporary arena, you are constantly challenged to keep learning about new artists that become relevant, as well as older artists that were forgotten but are being reassessed.

WHAT POSITIONS DID YOU FILL OVER THE YEARS AT CHRISTIE’S? HOW DID THEY EVOLVE AND WHAT WERE YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES DURING EACH PHASE AT THE AUCTION HOUSE?

I worked my way slowly up from being in charge of the Christie’s East sales of 20th Century Art, to working on more important works of art and collections. I also did a fair amount of writing for the Evening sale catalogues—this is a time when the specialists wrote the essays. I was promoted to Head of the Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening sale in 2007, a position I held for about 5 years.

Robert Manley with Warhol's Silver Liz Looking Forward to the Past 11 May 2015, New York,

Robert Manley with
Warhol’s Silver Liz
Looking Forward to the Past
11 May 2015, New York,

As a Sale Head, whether it is a $1 million or $700 million auction, you are essentially in charge of making sure every detail is done right, from research, catalogue presentation, viewing, marketing, selling. You also need to be a master of psychology, to manage all of the egos that come into play, because all of the sales have consignments from top specialists and top clients. In the end, it was an incredible experience and I am privileged to have worked with knowledgeable specialists, world class objects and the people who owned them.

Shortly into my tenure as Evening sale head, I also became the Head of the Post-War and Contemporary Art Department in New York. I enjoyed working with my colleagues and tried to make the department a smarter, better place. I encouraged collaboration and transparency, two traits not always embraced in the contemporary art market. I held that position for about 6 years or so, when I shifted away from direct management and became Deputy Chairman.

Robert Manley, 2012 at Christie's in front of "Untitled," by Lee Bontecou; "Aluminum-Magnesium Alloy Square," by Carl André in foreground

Robert Manley, 2012 at Christie’s in front of “Untitled,” by Lee Bontecou;
“Aluminum-Magnesium Alloy Square,” by Carl André in foreground

Although I held a number of leadership positions at Christie’s, the focus has always been on art and clients—every day we saw collections, appraised art, organized auctions, met with collectors…the main thing that changed over the years was the value of the art.

IN OUR NEXT LRFA POST, WE’LL HAVE ROBERT MANLEY’S INSIDER VIEW INTO THE INTERNATIONAL AUCTION WORLD. PLEASE JOIN US!

 

Robert Manley, Phillips Deputy Chair, on artists, auctions and the art market

Robert Manley Deputy Chairman Phillips

Robert Manley
Deputy Chairman
Phillips

2016: A YEAR OF SURPRISES, UPHEAVAL AND CHANGE IN EVERY POSSIBLE ARENA: POLITICAL, SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC. CERTAINLY THE SEA CHANGE OF LEADERSHIP AND HIERARCHY AT THE AUCTION HOUSES AND GALLERIES HAS BEEN OF TSUNAMI PROPORTIONS IN THE ART WORLD. AMONG THE MANY SHIFTS OF VENUE, APPOINTMENTS AND PROMOTIONS, LAST JULY PHILLIPS ANNOUNCED A SIGNIFICANT COUP; THE APPOINTMENT OF ROBERT MANLEY AS DEPUTY CHAIR OF POST WAR AND CONTEMPORARY FOLLOWING A LONG-STANDING AND BRILLIANT CAREER AT CHRISTIE’S.

ROBERT IS A COLLEAGUE AND FRIEND WHO HAD ADVISED ME ON BIDDING AND COLLABORATED WITH ME ON A MULTITUDE OF TRANSACTIONS, BOTH BIG AND SMALL, AT CHRISTIE’S FOR AT LEAST A DECADE. IT IS NO SURPRISE PHILLIPS HAS WELCOMED HIM AS AN IMPORTANT LEADING FIGURE IN THEIR HIGHLY EFFECTIVE EXPANSION STRATEGY OF THE LAST THREE YEARS MARKED BY THE ARRIVAL OF EX-CHRISTIE’S ED DOLMAN IN 2014.

Phillips New York Park Avenue at 57th Street

Phillips New York
Park Avenue at 57th Street

Phillips Auction House was founded in London in 1796 by Harry Phillips, formerly senior clerk to James Christie. The company descended in his family through the 20th Century until Bernard Arnault, chairman of the French luxury brand, Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessey, and merged his acquisition with the esteemed art dealers Simon de Pury and Daniela Luxembourg.

By 2013, the Mercury Group, a Russian retail and real estate conglomerate, acquired total control from de Pury and has expanded its international presence to include an impressive corner on 57th Street and Park Avenue (450 Park) and a modern, beautifully designed London Headquarters on Berkeley Square in the heart of Mayfair. Phillips has dedicated the last few years to forming a strong and unique presence in the competitive auction world in which Christie’s and Sotheby’s are serious rivals. As the art world has seen significant changes in the collector profile and buying habits, Phillips focuses on the younger, and perhaps edgier collector. 

berkwleysq2048x1536pxfront2IT IS WITH GREAT PLEASURE THAT THE LRFA BLOG OPENS THE 2017 POST WITH ROBERT MANLEY, SHARING HIS PROFESSIONAL HISTORY AND TOUCHING UPON HIS NEW POSITION AS DEPUTY CHAIR AND SENIOR INTERNATIONAL SPECIALIST OF 20th CENTURY AND CONTEMPORARY ART AT PHILLIPS.

ROBERT, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR TAKING THE TIME TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE LRFA BLOG.

I HAVE HAD THE PLEASURE OF WORKING WITH YOU FOR MANY YEARS WHEN YOU WERE AT CHRISTIE’S AND LOOK FORWARD TO MANY MORE IN YOUR NEW POSITION AS DEPUTY CHAIRMAN AT PHILLIPS. ALTHOUGH WE’VE KNOWN EACH OTHER A LONG TIME, I KNOW ONLY RANDOM BITS AND PIECES ABOUT YOUR PROFESSIONAL HISTORY. ONE OF THE NICEST BONUSES OF THE LRFA BLOG IS LEARNING MORE ABOUT COLLEAGUES AND FRIENDS SINCE WE TEND TO FOCUS ON THE IMMEDIATE TRANSACTION OR EVENT AT HAND.

 

imgres

 

ROBERT, WHAT PROMPTED YOUR INITIAL INVOLVEMENT IN ART? WAS YOUR FAMILY INTERESTED. WAS THERE AN ARTIST IN THE FAMILY, OR SOME AMBITIONS IN THAT DIRECTION YOURSELF?

I can date my interest in art to the first day of Art History 101 in college. I had always loved history, but until that day, I never thought of art as vehicle for a dialogue with history, ideas, aesthetics, politics and culture. It was a revelation. That class began an obsession that continues to this day. Learning about art is a bit like trying to put together a never-ending puzzle, and every day I try to fill in another blank space.

Joan Washburn

Joan Washburn

I KNOW THAT YOU WORKED FOR JOAN WASHBURN, ONE OF THE MOST DISTINGUISHED DEALERS IN THE ART WORLD. WHAT PERIOD OF TIME WERE YOU WITH THE GALLERY? WHAT EXHIBITIONS HAD THE MOST INFLUENCE ON YOUR UNDERSTANDING AND APPRECIATION OF ART?

The one thing about Joan that many people don’t know is that before she became a dealer, she was a top specialist at Sotheby’s…she has a great understanding of the role that auctions play in the art world and the ways in which auction can play havoc. It made me appreciate the responsibility that auction houses have, to artists and their galleries.  

Leon Polk Smith Selections from Miami December 16, 2016 - January 31, 2017 Washburn Gallery

Leon Polk Smith
Selections from Miami
December 16, 2016 – January 31, 2017
Washburn Gallery

Joan has been showing a diverse array of compelling art during her 40+ years in business (and still going strong), but the exhibitions that interested me most were the historical exhibitions we mounted. I was at the gallery in the late 1990s and we had exhibitions of Jackson Pollock, Louise Nevelson and David Smith, all estates with which we had a direct relationship. Joan was a joy to work with and I learned an enormous amount from her, especially the seriousness with which she researched, curated and installed the exhibitions. I also learned from Joan the importance of humor…she has a sharp wit and a great infectious laugh. I hope to one day have half of her energy and grace.

Jackson Pollack Works on Paper Washburn Gallery, NY

Jackson Pollack
Works on Paper
Washburn Gallery, NY

WERE THERE SPECIFIC PERIODS OF WORK THAT ALWAYS RESONATED WITH YOU? HAVE THESE PASSIONS AND ENTHUSIASMS CHANGED OVER THE YEARS? DO YOU THINK THAT AS WE ALL SEE MORE WORK, MORE EXHIBITIONS AND NEWER CONTEMPORARY WORKS, THAT OUR OWN EYE AND UNDERSTANDING EVOLVE, OR THAT PARTICULAR ARTISTS THAT ORIGINALLY RESONATE THE MOST STRONGLY CONTINUE TO DO SO?

I think our eye is always developing and our tastes change somewhat, but once you reach a certain understanding of art, it’s more like constructing a building–the things you love are like your foundation, and as you see more, you’re building more floors on top of them. I find my tastes and interests become more catholic with each year.

Manley with Mark Rothko painting

Manley with Mark Rothko painting

I’ve always admired the works of the Abstract Expressionists, the visual power and directness of the best of them.  The historian in me likes the story of the genesis and development of the movement, and how it is inextricably linked with contemporary world events of the time.

Bill Traylor American Folk Art Museum, NY

Bill Traylor
American Folk Art Museum, NY

I’ve also come to appreciate the work of Outsider Art. I was fortunate to work at Luise Ross Gallery, where we showed, among others, Bill Traylor, Minnie Evans and Thornton Dial. Outsider Art is a bit like the Abstract Expressionists, in the way they are very much unmediated expressions. They were trying to find something within themselves and express it to the rest of us. As I learned more about the movements that came in the wake of Abstract Expressionism, I became drawn to Minimalism and Conceptual art of the 1960’s, and the artists in their wake.

Miguel Barcelo Muletero, 1990 Phillips London Evening Sale March 8, 2017

Miguel Barcelo
Muletero, 1990
Phillips London Evening Sale
March 8, 2017

IN OUR NEXT POST, ROBERT EXPANDS ON HIS GALLERY EXPERIENCE AND THE PROFESSIONAL PATH THAT LED HIM TO CHRISTIE’S AUCTION HOUSE. WE HAVE A GREAT EXPERT ON TAP, WITH A PROFOUND KNOWLEDGE OF THE ART WORLD AND MARKET AND A GENUINE PASSION FOR ART AND WELCOME ALL QUESTIONS AND COMMENTS.