Lot 56: Robert Motherwell, “The Basque Suite #2,” Screenprint, 1970-71
October 27, 2016
New York, NY, USALive Auction
Screenprint in colors on J.B. Green paper
Robert Motherwell (b.1915 - d.1991) - American Abstract Expressionist painter, printmaker, and editor
Initialed “RM” in pencil on lower right, recto.
Artist’s blindstamp on lower right, recto.
Numbered “126/150” in pencil on lower right, recto.
Printed signature on lower left, recto.
Printed by Kelpra Studio, London
Published by Marlborough Graphics, London
Image dimensions: 22 ½ x 17 ¼ in (57.15 x 43.82 cm)
Sheet dimensions: 39 ½ x 27 ½ in (100.3 x 69.85 cm)
Framed dimensions: 43 ¼ x 31 ¼ x 1 in (109.86 x 79.38 x 2.54 cm)
A major figure of the Abstract Expressionist generation, Motherwell’s mature work encompasses both the expressive brushwork of action painting and the breadth of scale and saturated hues of color field painting, often with a marked emphasis on European traditions of decorative abstraction. This screenprint features these famed characteristics, with expressive swaths of black and orange over a vibrant green and white background.
Robert Motherwell (American, b.1915 - d.1991)
Alongside Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, and Willem de Kooning, Robert Motherwell is considered one of the great American Abstract Expressionist painters. His esteemed intellect not only undergirded his gorgeous, expressive paintings—frequently featuring bold black shapes against fields of color—but also made Motherwell one of the leading writers, theorists, and advocates of the New York School. He forged close friendships with the European Surrealists and other intellectuals over his interests in poetry and philosophy, and as such served as a vital link between the pre-war avant-garde in Europe and its post-war counterpart in New York, establishing automatism and psychoanalysis as central concerns of American abstraction. He is best known for his mature work, recognizable for its graphic composition of saturated and expressive brushstrokes. In addition to his contributions in painting, Motherwell taught at Black Mountain College in North Carolina and Hunter College in New York, and was the editor of several influential books on art history. Motherwell’s works can be found in renowned museums worldwide, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice; and the Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo.
In overall excellent condition. With minor surface soiling.
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