GLEN COVE, N.Y. – The highly anticipated Personal Collection of Tony Rosenthal auction at Roland Auction NY on September 25 scored big with collectors and dealers alike, locally and around the globe.
Southampton, New York-based abstract sculptor Tony Rosenthal (American, 1914-2009) curated and refined his own personal collection, both in the Rosenthal home and upon its Southampton property, during the course of a half century. For the first time, the collection was made available at the September 25 sale conducted by Roland Auctions NY, in collaboration with the Tony Rosenthal estate.
Receiving the most attention and media coverage was Lovers, an unsigned brushed aluminum relief sculpture with juxtaposed geometric forms. It topped its high estimate, selling for $62,500 to a prominent New York dealer bidding on the phone. This piece graced the front yard of Rosenthal’s Southampton property for more than 20 years.
Rosenthal is possibly best known for his landmark Alamo cube sculpture on New York City’s Astor Place. He designed the piece in 1967, when it was accepted as the first permanent contemporary outdoor public sculpture by the City of New York. He created different variations on the cube in the years that followed, and, not surprisingly, some were the most sought-after items in the sale.
Untitled (Tony Rosenthal’s Cube), a signed, circa-2008 polished bronze variation on the artist’s iconic cube sculptures, sold for $23,750, while the Untitled (“Cube” variation) circa-1980 revolving cube sculpture in black painted aluminum realized $22,500.
Works that sold higher than expected included Big Red, a signed, circa-1998 large welded and painted aluminum free-standing lattice sculpture, which achieved $11,875. Untitled, an abstract relief sculpture in welded brass, signed and dated 1962 sold for $8,125, and Echos and Whispers IV, Welded Steel – Tony Rosenthal, a circa-1998 welded steel sculpture from the artist’s Accumulation series, went for $6,875.
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