Auction Preview: Modern Visions: Exceptional Photographs, February 17 and 18, 2016 @Christie’s

In a daring early season move, Christie’s has introduced a solid, vintage-heavy sale into mid-February, giving collectors a reason to sit up and pay attention before the main photography auction season arrives in early April. Divided into evening and day (morning/afternoon) sessions, it is loaded with early 20th century work, particularly Stieglitz, Steichen, Kühn, and their circle; the bookends of 19th century and contemporary imagery are only lightly touched, if at all. It’s also a sale that is meaningfully clustered by artists, with runs of images by EWeston, Sudek, and others piling up as the sale unfolds. Overall, there are a total of 279 lots available across the sale, with a Total High Estimate of $8050000.

Here’s the statistical breakdown:

Preview Statistics
Total Low Lots (high estimate up to and including $10000) 122
Total Low Estimate (sum of high estimates of low lots) $748000
Total Mid Lots (high estimate between $10000 and $50000) 132
Total Mid Estimate $3052000
Total High Lots (high estimate above $50000) 25
Total High Estimate $4250000

The top lot by High estimate is lot 4, Edward Steichen, In Memoriam, 1901/1904-1905, estimated at $400000-600000 (image above, via Christie’s).

Here’s the complete list of photographers with six or more lots in the sale, along with the number of lots on offer:

Multiple Lots For Sale
Edward Weston 26
Alfred Steiglitz 25
Josef Sudek 16
Edward Steichen 14
Diane Arbus 11
Bill Brandt 11
Henri Cartier-Bresson 11
Heinrich Kühn 11
Brassaï 9
Eugène Atget 6
Erwin Blumenfeld 6
Man Ray 6
Paul Strand 6

Other lots of interest include (images above, via Christie’s):

Lot 10, Edward Steichen, The Pool – Evening: A Symphony to a Race and to a Soul, 1899, estimated at $150000-250000

Lot 14, Alfred Stieglitz, Georgia O’Keeffe with African Statuary, c1919, estimated at $250000-350000

Lot 18, Gustave Le Gray, Bateaux Quittant le Port du Havre (Navires de la Flotte de Napoleon III), 1856-1857, estimated at $300000-500000

Lot 32, Edward Weston, Shell, 1927, estimated at $250000-350000

The complete lot by lot catalog can be found here (Evening and Day).

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Read more about: Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen, Edward Weston, Gustave Le Gray, Christie's

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