PHILADELPHIA – On Oct. 30, Freeman’s will present the collection of Robert J. Morrison, a Philadelphia Pop Art collector and philanthropist whose extensive collected works include prints and multiples by Pop Art icons such as Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Claes Oldenburg, Frank Stella and Jim Dine. Bid absentee or live online through LiveAuctioneers.
“Robert Morrison was a generous, witty man and an intellectually curious collector. His collection was built around iconic Pop works but also included invitations, posters and ephemera that together tell the story of a lifelong collector and ad-man who loved a witty turn of phrase and a colorful, effective image. Bob was drawn to the democratic nature of Pop art and loved nothing more than to share his collection with others,” said Freeman’s Anne Henry, who is heading up the auction.
The core of Morrison’s collection is composed of graphic works by two of the most important and influential artists of the Pop Art movement: Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. Top works by Lichtenstein include Sweet Dreams Baby! (above) at an estimate of $60,000-$100,000 (Lot 26); Crying Girl (below) at an estimate of $30,000-$50,000 (Lot 6); and Shipboard Girl (1965) at an estimate of $30,000-$50,000 (Lot 32).
Top works by Warhol include Liz (1964) at an estimate of $20,000-$30,000 (Lot 48); Flowers (1970) at an estimate of $25,000-$35,000 (Lot 65); and three variations from his Mao series, two estimated at $30,000-$50,000 and one at $20,000-$30,000 (Lots 51-53).
Other highlights offered include Ed Ruscha’s Rodeo (1969) at an estimate of $6,000-$10,000 (Lot 83); Wayne Thiebaud’s Black Suckers 1971 at an estimate of $15,000-$25,000 (Lot 45); and Robert Longo’s Rick, 1994, at an estimate of $10,000-$15,000 (Lot 76).
Robert Morrison began collecting at the age of 12, fueled by an early passion for graphic works of art and design. After graduating business school in the early 1960s, Bob moved to New York City to pursue a career in advertising. There, he attended gallery shows and met some of the artists whose works he began to collect, including Warhol and Lichtenstein. He later moved to Philadelphia and became a nationally celebrated advertising executive, compiling more than 200 national creative awards over the span of his career.
“There’s no doubt that collecting contemporary art can be a wonderful passion. Maybe even an obsession. For me, it has always been both, and I have never regretted the journey.” – Robert J. Morrison
Bob was also a dedicated philanthropist in Philadelphia, serving as a board member and chairman of the Delaware Valley Legacy Fund. He also gave time and support to OutGivers, amfAR, and helped launch the WillPower Project. In 2007, in partnership with the Rockefeller Group, Bob created “The Fine Art of Tangible Assets,” a monograph and conversation discussing the transformation of collections into philanthropic capital, and more recently, helped launch an emerging art collectors group, Philly Stewards.
For details contact Anne Henry at Freeman’s: email@example.com or 267-414-1220.