LOS ANGELES — June 21 is the start of summer and the longest day of the year. Tuesday, June 21, 2022 was when the highly anticipated Post-War and Contemporary Art + Design auction took place at John Moran Auctioneers, and it was a rousing success. More than 275 lots of modern and contemporary paintings, a broad selection of prints and multiples, Brutalist and abstract sculptures, decorative art, and contemporary and mid-century furniture by local and internationally acclaimed designers were presented to an eager and active audience of bidders.
Multiple bidders also showed major interest in Deserted Beach, a 1975 oil painting from American artist Sally Michel. It realized $26,250.
Two other American artists performed exceptionally well in this sale: Milton Avery and Thomas Nozkowski. The Avery, a 1941 painting titled Girl on Balcony, achieved $24,700, and the Nozkowski painting, Untitled (8-50), earned $23,750.
There was a large variety of prints and multiples in the June 21 lineup. One of the biggest and most colorful prints in this sale, The Monkey Rope by Frank Stella, finished with a phone bid of $23,750.
A popular featured collection was a suite of flower screenprints by Andy Warhol, based on images of flowers he found in a wallpaper catalog. The six prints of the Flowers (Hand-Colored) series from 1974 achieved an aggregate total of $73,750.
A piece by the American abstract artist Dimitri Hadzi, Terra III, was one of the best examples of Brutalist sculpture offered in this auction. This 1960s work, standing 49in tall, exceeded its estimate, bringing in $25,000.
A tiny piece that packed a major punch was an untitled ceramic from Doyle Lane, who was known for his innovative, tactile glazes. The piece, a collection of amber- and rust-colored ceramic tiles in a wood frame, had an original estimate of $1,000-$1,500 but wowed everyone with a final bid of $7,500.
Designer furniture performed notably well, with a Philip and Kevin LaVerne Chin Yin coffee table achieving $9,375 and two 1960s pewter and bronze forms by Silas Seandel attaining $14,300. The biggest surprises were lots 207 and 208, two individually offered dripping brass console tables by Zhipeng Tan. Created in 2017, each had a modest estimate of $2,000-$3,000, but together achieved an amazing aggregate total of $32,500.
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