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Auction Description for Christie's: CONTEMPORARY ART

CONTEMPORARY ART

(36 Lots)

by Christie's


36 lots with images

February 8, 2001

8 King Street, St. James's

London, SW1Y 6QT United Kingdom

Phone: +44 (0)207 839 9060

Fax: +44 (0)207 839 1611

Email: info@christies.com

Gary Hume (B. 1962) Untitled (Portrait of Zoe)

Lot 27: Gary Hume (B. 1962) Untitled (Portrait of Zoe)

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Description: enamel on aluminium 411/8 x 283/4in. (104.5 x 73cm.) Painted in 1999. PROVENANCE White Cube, London. NOTES "Often, Hume's portraits are reduced to an instantaneous look or glance - he freezes that sudden apprehension of a pair of eyes, hair, that blob on a stalk for a head on a neck. Hume's portraits are often about such fleeting moments of recognition, yet the more one looks the more complex these paintings become. They are portraits painted in the subject's absence, representing not so much the person as the space that their body would occupy, the trace of a portrait, a barely fleshed-out shadow." (A. Searle, in: 'Gary Hume. British Pavilion. XLVIII Venice Biennale', London 1999, p.18.).

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Mariko Mori (B. 1967)

Lot 28: Mariko Mori (B. 1967)

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Description: The Beginning of the End, Tokyo Crystal print, wood, pewter frame 39 x 197 x 3in. (100 x 500 x 7.62cm.) Executed in 1995. PROVENANCE Deitch Projects, New York. LITERATURE 'Mariko Mori', Ostfildern-Ruit 1998 (illustrated in colour, pp.48-49). 'Mariko Mori-Esoteric Cosmos', Ostfildern-Ruit 1999 (detail illustrated, p.24). D. Palazzoli, 'Sentimento del 2000. Arte e foto: 1960/2000', Milan 1999 (illustrated in colour, p.193). NOTES Mariko Mori's art is about transcendence. From her early self-portraits as a robotic plaything or a sugar-coated plastic pop star to her more mystical and overtly Buddhist-inspired landscapes of enlightenment, the issue of human evolution, both bodily and spiritual, lies at the heart of her work. 'The Beginning of the End, Tokyo', 1995, stands in many ways at the centre of the progression of her work to date and is one that deliberately leaves open to question the nature of such transcendence. An enormous sixteen-foot crystal print photograph of a city square in the centre of Tokyo, 'The Beginning of the End, Tokyo' depicts the city as the epicentre of modern life. A panoramic expanse of artificial urban comfort with its litter-strewn streets and seemingly endless array of marketing information and packaging, the scene reflects the 'empty dream' of consumerist culture - the late twentieth century as a dead-end street. This panoramic strip of reality depicts the artificial world of the concrete jungle. The glossy accuracy of the photographic medium is deliberately used to highlight this sense of artificiality and encourage the viewer into questioning the reality of everything he or she sees. At the very centre of the work, a translucent pod containing a humanoid figure has appeared seemingly un-noticed by the busy city dwellers. This extraordinary science-fiction image aligned to the prophetic title of the work announces the imminent end of 'reality' as we know it. Mori leaves the question open as to whether this pod is the first in an alien invasion or a tool for human transcendence and evolutionary progress as in Stanley Kubrick's '2001 - A Space Odyssey'. Given the nature of Mori's later work, it seems most likely that the pod or 'body capsule' is an imaginary devise which is used to transport the mind and perhaps body of a person into a different dimension a higher plane of reality and away from the ugly sham world of consumerism that we all recognise in the Tokyo surroundings.

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Peter Fischli & David Weiss (B. 1952 & 1946)

Lot 29: Peter Fischli & David Weiss (B. 1952 & 1946)

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Description: Car plaster cast on metal and wood structure 201/2 x 34 x 541/2in. (52 x 86.4 x 138.4cm.) Executed in 1989, this work is from an edition of six. PROVENANCE Sonnabend Gallery, New York.

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Tracey Emin (B. 1963)

Lot 30: Tracey Emin (B. 1963)

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Description: Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Made installation including 14 paintings, 78 drawings, 5 body prints, numerous painted items, art supplies, personal items, 1 bed and mattress and various other items of furniture, 1 radio and CD player, 9 music CDs, various newspapers and magazines and numerous kitchen and food supplies (For a complete inventory of the installation, please contact the department.) dimensions variable Executed in 1996. PROVENANCE Galleri Andreas Br„ndstr”m, Stockholm. LITERATURE H. Luard and Z. Manzi (eds.), 'Tracey Emin. I Need Art Like I Need God', London 1998 (Stockholm version of the performance/installation illustrated in colour, pp.38-39 and cover). B. Riemschneider and U. Grosenick (eds.), 'Art at the Turn of the Millennium', Cologne 1999 (Cologne version of the installation illustrated in colour, p.149). EXHIBITION Stockholm, Galleri Andreas Br„ndstr”m, 'Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Made', 1996. Cologne, K”lnsicher Kunstverein, 'Ca-Ca Poo-Poo', 1997-1998. NOTES Teenage promiscuity, multiple abortions, rape and tortured love affairs - this is the life and art of Tracey Emin. By telling her life-story through her own memories, Emin invites us to share her most painful memories of her unhappy teenage experiences. Emin is clearly a romantic at heart, and behind the facade hides a very sensitive girl with a confession to make. Often too intimate and too personal for some viewers, her work makes us feel like intruders on her personal space, raising a sensation of discomfort and, at the same time, a distinct sense of fascination - a fascination arising from our hunger for real-life dramas and the exposure of private lives for public consumption, issues which truly come to light in Emin's most ambitious work to date, 'The Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Made', 1996. In 1996, Emin went to Stockholm to challenge her six-year painting block. For two weeks, she locked herself in a secluded space created inside the Galleri Andreas Br„ndstr”m. Completely naked, Emin would sleep, eat and make her exhibition, while the public could watch through sixteen fish-eye lenses in the walls. Emin spent the first three days looking at the bare canvases and talking to friends on the phone. It was not until the critic Carl Freedman advised her to "paint something [she] would like to own" that the images sprang from her brush. An idosyncratic version of Edvard Munch's 'The Scream' and images based on drawings by Egon Schiele - her paintings became autobiographical self-portraits of intimate details of her life. Photographs taken during the performance depict her in various poses, painting and at rest. Reminiscent of Joseph Beuys' action 'I Like America, America Likes Me', 1974, for which the German artist lived in the Ren‚ Block Gallery in New York together with a live coyote for several days, Emin lived and worked with her paintings as a self-exploiting therepy. While Beuys was making a social statement, Emin's statement is highly personal. Although her work often seems rough and sketchy, Emin has created a very poetic language of her own, which will leave the spectator with equally strong emotional feelings. The installation/performance at the Galleri Andreas Br„ndstr”m in Stockholm is documented in the following lot [no. 32], nine colour photographs titled 'Naked Photos - Life Model Goes Mad', which Emin produced in an edition of three with White Cube, London, in 1996.

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Tracy Emin (B. 1963)

Lot 31: Tracy Emin (B. 1963)

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Description: Naked Photos - Life Model Goes Mad 9 colour photographs in artist's frames each 21 x 201/2in. (53 x 52cm.) Executed in 1996, this work was published by White Cube, London, in an edition of three. 9 PROVENANCE Jay Jopling/White Cube, London. LITERATURE H. Luard and Z. Manzi (eds.), 'Tracey Emin. I Need Art Like I Need God', London 1998 (another from the edition illustrated in colour, pp.38-39, cover). NOTES 'Naked Photos - Life Model Goes Mad' documents the performance/installation 'Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Made' [see lot 31], "a gallery presentation of her studio: sketches, paintings, texts, everyday odds and ends, photos, souvenirs, a cassette recorder, books, a bed and underwear on clothes lines. [...] Emin's exhibitionism is less embarassing than it is stimulating and constructive. Memorable and intense, her work poses the question of the meaning of art today." (B. Riemschneider and U. Grosenick (eds.), 'Art at the Turn of the Millennium', Cologne 1999, p.146.).

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