The fall art auctions in New York set an all-time record, as a surge in global wealth, growing inflation fears and the continued collectibles craze boosted demand and prices.
Sales at Christie’s, Sotheby’s and Philips totaled $2.65 billion over the course of the two weeks, smashing the all-time record for fall sales of $2.59 billion in 2014, according to Pi-eX, an art data and analytics firm. Collectors battled over everything from classic Cezannes and Van Goghs to a video sculpture tied to an NFT.
A record 32 works sold for more than $20 million, according to Pi-eX, and 54 works sold for more than $10 million. The total for Christie’s was $1.14 billion, at Sotheby’s $1.34 billion and at Phillips over $170 million.
Crypto wealth was on full display. Crypto “whale” Justin Sun paid $78.4 million for Alberto Giacometti’s “Le Nez” sculpture. A group of crypto investors known as ConstitutionDAO lost out to billionaire Ken Griffin for an original copy of the U.S. Constitution that went for $43.2 million.
“Art market sentiment is sky high at the moment,” said Evan Beard, head of specialty segments at Bank of America, “driven by low interest rates, stock market wealth effect, inflationary monetary policy and new crypto wealth that needs to be parked somewhere.”
The sale of two big collections — the Cox Collection at Christie’s and the Macklowe Collection at Sotheby’s — created a trove of quality art trophies for wealthy bidders.
The sales from the Cox Collection, which was owned by the late Dallas oil tycoon Edwin L. Cox, totaled $332 million. It included Vincent van Gogh’s 1889 masterpiece “Cabanes de bois parmi les oliviers,” which sold for nearly $71.4 million — twice its estimate. Another van Gogh went for six times its estimate. The J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles bought Gustave Caillebotte’s “Young Man at His Window” for $53 million.
The Macklowe Collection, a product of the developer Harry Macklowe’s bitter divorce, brought in $676 million. It was led by Mark Rothko’s “No. 7,” which went for $82.5 million. Along with the Giacometti sculpture that was acquired by Sun, it included a Jackson Pollock that went for $61.2 million and a towering Cy Twombly piece that fetched $58.9 million.
NFTs, or nonfungible tokens, also made a cameo at the fall sales. An “NFT-powered” sculpture by the digital artist Mike Winkelmann, better known as Beeple, went for $29 million at Christie’s. The sculpture is a 3D, 7-foot-tall digital lightbox made of four LED screens that shows an astronaut strolling through ever-changing landscapes. The buyer was crypto-focused Swiss venture capitalist Ryan Zurrer, who on Twitter praised Beeple for the “visionary innovation, amazing new energy and hilarious positive vibes that you’ve brought to both crypto and art.”
It became the second highest price ever paid for an NFT after Beeple’s “Everydays: The First 5,000 Days,” which sold at Christie’s earlier this year for $69 million.
The crypto crowd was not as fortunate with its efforts to buy a copy of the Constitution. A group of more than 17,000 crypto investors and enthusiasts, called ConstitutionDAO, raised over $40 million to buy a first edition of the U.S. Constitution. They were outbid by billionaire hedge-funder Ken Griffin, who paid $43.2 million for the piece of history. It will be displayed at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Arkansas.
On Twitter, Beeple praised Constitution DAO and said, “I think this is the start of something big.”
Paintings turned trees into central characters in Canadian art: expert – OrilliaMatters
ORILLIA MUSEUM OF ART & HISTORY
In her introduction to this year’s Carmichael Art History Lecture fundraiser, Executive Director of the Orillia Museum of Art & History (OMAH), Ninette Gyorody paid tribute to Qennefer Browne. It was a remembrance of gratitude.
Browne founded our annual Art History Lecture and named it in honour of Franklin Carmichael, a member of the Group of Seven, who was born in Orillia. Browne organized speakers for many years, until her death.
This year, we were incredibly fortunate to have Dr. Anna Hudson, who teaches Art History and Visual Culture in the Arts Music Performance Dance (AMPD) Department of York University, as our distinguished lecturer.
Her compelling presentation was a focus of her doctoral dissertation, “Art and Social Consciousness: The Toronto community of Painters, 1933-1950” was ‘What Came after the Group of Seven.’
From 1933 to 1950, a group of socially-conscious painters imagined a society transformed by art, and came together to develop a shared language of visual representation, building on the legacy of the Group of Seven.
Dr. Hudson spoke of the way artists play off each other’s work, investing form with meaning over time. Her talk was supported by images of Canadian paintings and photos of the period, which illustrated ideas within the lecture and enabled us to connect with the art.
Visual themes of the lecture were ‘TREE, BODY, INDUSTRY, LAND, HOME’.
First up for discussion were paintings by Franklin Carmichael: Autumn in Orillia (1924), Farm, Haliburton (1940) and Autumn Hillside (1920). In the 1940 painting, a tree is the dominant figure in the landscape. Dr. Hudson explored what this might mean, referencing the historical context of 1940.
Next, images of Jack Pine and West Wind, by Tom Thomson, were shared. These paintings lifted trees into the role of central characters in Canadian art, rather than being part of a pretty European style landscape painting.
Continuing her discussion of paintings, sculpture, photographs and commercial art by Canadian artists of the period 1933 to 1950, Dr. Hudson shared her interpretation of this phase of our national art.
One of the most fascinating paintings referenced was ‘Tree’, painted in 1944, by Isabel McLaughlin. This writer viewed this painting at The McMichael Gallery last month. Dr. Hudson’s assessment of ‘Tree’ as “disturbing, powerful, visceral, tactile” fits this painting.
We thank Dr. Hudson for sharing her vast knowledge and passion for this important time in Canadian art history. Her presentation was a great complement to the Carmichael Canadian Landscape Exhibition: Tradition Transformed, now in its 20th year. Don’t miss this incredible juried show.
The History Speaker Series will be on hiatus for December and will resume on Jan. 19, 2022, via Zoom.
Popular Orillia historian, Dave Town, will be our guest speaker with his talk ‘Yellowhead’s Revolt’. Local Indigenous leader, Rama’s Chief Yellowhead, stood defiant against not just the white man, but his fellow Chiefs in 1846 at the Great Meeting held in Orillia.
At issue were life-changing policies, the most significant of which was the creation of the first residential schools in Canada. Chief Yellowhead stood up for what he felt was right for his people. Don’t miss Dave’s fascinating talk about this important event in our local history.
Click here to register for the talk or call Monica at 705-326-2159 or email email@example.com
Admission to the History Speaker Series is free, but donations to OMAH are appreciated.
The OMAH History Committee thanks you for your loyal support in 2021. Stay tuned for a full list of dynamic speakers in 2022. Wishing you a safe and festive holiday season.
Art Fx #44: "Around the Bend" by Pam MacKenzie – Huntsville Doppler – Huntsville Doppler
Art Fx is a year-long series on Huntsville Doppler featuring Huntsville-area visual artists.
“Around the Bend” by Pam MacKenzie is a 24” x 36″ acrylic on birch
“This painting depicts a canoe trip up a stream to explore what lies beyond,” says Pam. “My husband and I were avid canoeists and spent countless hours exploring small rivers and creeks. Travelling in these small bodies of winding waters always left you wondering what was around the corner. Did it continue on or was this bend going to end up in a bay or a larger body of water than we were comfortable travelling on in our canoe? Were we going to be able to continue in the canoe or going to have to portage over a rough spot, leaving the colour of our canoe on buried river rock? Or were we going to find a quiet spot to pull ashore on and explore the land along the banks?”
“Around the Bend” is available for $400.
About the artist
Artistic endeavours have always been part of Pam’s life, from making her own school clothing to designing and creating wedding gowns and apparel to art quilts, weaving and stained glass.
Pam began exploring the drawing and painting art world in 2013 with Laura Landers, Iris Shields, and now Carol Rudderham.
Pam has taken long workshops with a number of well-known Canadian artists and is currently working on an online course in bold-colour painting through the Bold School based in B.C.. While her first love is portraiture in black and white, she felt the need to colour her portraits first in pastels and now in acrylic and is taking this course to do just that.
Currently Pam is exploring the world of pouring art as she has splints on both arms following a tumble this fall. When life throws you lemons, make lemonade.
Pam is co-chair of the Huntsville Art Society and takesadvantage of the many opportunities through HAS to show her work. She also paints with a group at Carol Rudderham’s and shows her work bi-annually in the gallery at Partners Hall in the Algonquin Theatre.
See more local art in Doppler’s Art Fx series here.
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Year end art exhibition features 40+ local art makers – North Bay News – BayToday.ca
The Alex Dufresne Gallery is presenting its annual year-end show “Petit Noel: Exhibit & Sale.”
“This art exhibition has brought together over 40 different painters, photographers, potters, and artisans of all mediums, styles, and levels of experience to curate a show that reflects the passion of the northeastern Ontario art community.,” says Natasha Wiatr, Curator.
All pieces are no larger than 20” by 20” in size and almost all pieces are for sale.
The show is currently on display and will stay up until Saturday, December 30.
The gallery is open Wednesday – Saturday from 10 – 5 excluding Christmas Day and New Years Day.
“If you would prefer to book the gallery for a private viewing on a Tuesday, please contact us to arrange for a time,” adds Wiatr. “The gallery is free, with donations welcome. Due to Covid-19 guidelines, we ask that visitors wear masks and maintain six feet of social distancing, and we have hand sanitizer available on site. Please do not visit if you are not feeling well.”
Location: Alex Dufresne Gallery (107 Lansdowne St. E. in Callander, in the same building as the Callander Bay Heritage Museum)
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