Color Your Home Contemporary With These Iconic Works

Lot 11, "Mansion" by Mark Flood, 2001, acrylic on canvas, Estimate: $30,000-50,000, Sotheby’s (July 15-29)

Summer is the perfect time to find exciting pieces, both by blue chip and emerging artists, at accessible price points. Sotheby’s online-only Contemporary Art Online auction makes it easy to bid on your schedule in the summer months, and offers a variety of works at attractive prices to interest all types of collectors.

With bidding closing at the end of the week (July 29), we polled several Sotheby’s specialists in contemporary art about the most interesting and notable pieces in July’s sale.

Lot 8, “U.J.A. Federation Sculpture, Edition C” by Louise Nevelson, 1981, painted wood,
Estimate: $6,000-8,000, Sotheby’s (July 15-29)

“This is visually very representative of the kinds of works that she made throughout her career in that they were wooden assemblages, public sculptures, [except] this is a much smaller scale than many that you are probably most familiar with…It’s found wood from any source that she came upon, and they’re assembled into these beautiful, very dramatic, and sometimes very intimate compositions.” – Meghan McDonald, specialist in Contemporary Art at Sotheby’s


Lot 5, “Coming Into Land” by Alexander Calder, 1964, gouache and ink on paper,
Estimate: $35,000-45,000, Sotheby’s (July 15-29)

“The present work has the spirit of all quintessential Calder gouaches: spiraling icons that mimic his early wire sculptures, primary colors including red and blue, and orbs and spontaneous impressions relating to geometric forms first explored by the artist in his sculptural practice. The work emits a joyous and uplifting quality, and it’s a timeless representation of our cosmos.” – Lisa Dennison, Chairman, Sotheby’s North and South America


Lot 6, “Brown Ground” by Thomas Downing, 1965, acrylic on canvas,
Estimate: $15,000-20,000, Sotheby’s (July 15-29)

“The Calder was done in 1964 and Downing was done in 1965 … you see the red spot versus these spots and they’re an interesting conversation…[The second generation of “Color Field”] becomes a little less washy … Downing actually restrains the color a little bit more. Here he is really known for his dot paintings, this is a perfect prime example.” – Emily Kaplan, AVP, Head of Contemporary Curated at Sotheby’s


Lot 9, “Seminole Host/ROCI USA (Wax Fire Works)” by Robert Rauschenberg, 1990, acrylic &
fire wax on stainless steel in aluminum frame, Estimate: $25,000-35,000, Sotheby’s (July 15-29)

“Roci was this really fabulous project that Rauschenberg embarked on in 1984. It lasted for seven years with artists visiting ten different countries, China, Japan, Venezuela, Mexico, Malaysia, Tibet, all over the world. He was really trying to promote world peace, human rights, and freedom of artistic expression, which were really important values to him as an artist.” – Meghan McDonald, specialist in Contemporary Art at Sotheby’s


Lot 10, “Pink Pedi” by Marilyn Minter, 2010, enamel on metal, Estimate: $60,000-80,000,
Sotheby’s (July 15-29)

“‘Pink Pedi’ reflects the artist’s seductive depiction of glamour, representing our culture’s complex emotions around the female body, beauty, and critical focus on the power of desire … It is a joy to watch Minter paint. She uses her finger tips, dabbing and rubbing the shiny enamel paint against the metal surface, the sound evoking the beating of a drum, or the pitter-patter of raindrops.” – Lisa Dennison, Chairman, Sotheby’s North and South America


Lot 11, “Mansion” by Mark Flood, 2001, acrylic on canvas, Estimate: $30,000-50,000,
Sotheby’s (July 15-29)

“He’s actually using lace, that’s his tool … he strips the lace away and what you’re left with is all these variegated hues, a lot of dimension, I mean the detail is incredible … What’s so wonderful is you see all the little threads … and if you come up close, there’s something else happening on the surface.” – Madeline Hurst, specialist in Contemporary Art at Sotheby’s