Phillips will kick off the 2018 auction season in New York with its “New Now” sale on February 28, 2018 offering nearly 250 lots. The auction will be the first of Phillips’ “20th Century & Contemporary Art” auctions to include Latin American works. George Condo’s “Nude Homeless Drinker” will lead the sale, featured alongside artworks by Damien Hirst, Ugo Rondinone, and Manolo Valdés.
Listed below are some of the highlights of the auction:
George Condo’s “Nude Homeless Drinker,” 1999, is at once visually arresting and amusingly alarming. This work is a striking example of Condo’s interest in picturing psychological disturbance. A pivotal work that bridges his many thematic and technical achievements, “Nude Homeless Drinker” is one of the first instances in Condo’s painting where he explicitly depicts multiple states of physical and mental being.
Damien Hirst’s “Arachidoyl Chloride,” 2005, is a striking example from the artist’s iconic “Spot Paintings” series. First begun in 1986, the paintings are composed of uniformly round spots dispersed immaculately across a rigidly ordered grid. The spots are likened to the individual components of chemical compounds, which can come together in infinite combinations. Hirst makes the connection between art and science clear by sourcing the titles of his “Spot Paintings” from the chemical company Sigma-Aldrich’s catalogue.
A striking group of three female portraits by Manolo Valdés will also be featured at the auction. Two sculptures, “Infanta Margarita” and “Lydia,” along with one painting, “Joelle sobre fondo verde oscuro,” reflect the artist’s singular treatment of media and his renowned engagement with art historical masters, especially Diego Velázquez. The three works offered in this sale also reflect the technical abstraction of the artist.
Ugo Rondinone’s "No. 69 VIERUNDZWANZIGSTERNOVEMBERNEUNZEHNHUNDERTFÜNFUNDNEUNZIG,” 1995, whose title lists, without pause and in German, the date of its execution, is emblematic of the artist’s engagement with suspended time and space. Rondinone creates a monumental, monochrome landscape that unfolds lyrically in front of the viewer. At over 16 feet wide, it is a powerful example of how Rondinone melds pictorial and linguistic poetry to heighten the experience of sensitive reflection.
The upcoming sale will feature 12 works from the collection of Michael and Sirje Gold, including pieces by Ana Mendieta, Yoshitomo Nara, Kurt Kauper, and Joel Morrison, among others.