NEW YORK — Old Master Through Modern Prints are at auction May 6 at Swann Galleries. Prints from Northern Renaissance and Golden Age icons Durer and Rembrandt feature in the sale, as well as Impressionist collaborations, European Modernists, and American printmakers. Absentee and Internet live bidding will be available through LiveAuctioneers.
The selection of Old Master prints includes engravings, woodcuts, etchings and drypoints by both well-known and lesser-known printmakers whose images have stood the test of time. Highlights include an intricate run of etchings by Rembrandt van Rijn with Joseph Telling his Dreams, 1638, estimated at $30,000-$50,000. Also by Rembrandt is Landscape with an Obelisk, circa 1650, expected at $20,000-$30,000; and The Holy Family, circa 1632, at $15,000-$20,000. Albrecht Durer is on offer with The Sea Monster, an engraving that predates 1500, and The Birth of the Virgin, a circa-1503 woodcut. Both carry individual estimates of $15,000-$20,000. The lineup also includes engravings by Lucas Van Leyden with the 1508 image Susanna and the Elders, estimated at $10,000-$15,000; Hendrick Goltzius’s 1585 work Mars and Venus Surprised by Vulcan, estimated at $4,000-$6,000; and also works Agostino Carracci, Giovanni B. Piranesi, Canaletto, and Francisco Jose de Goya.
Nineteenth century works begin with two mezzotint and engravings by Joseph M. W. Turner from a circa 1817–18 series of 81 mezzotints that have come to be known as the Liber Studiorum: Pembury Mill, Kent. The series is estimated at $1,000-$1,500. A second Turner series from the same general date, titled Mer de Glace, Valley of Chamonix, Savoy, is estimated at $1,500-$2,500. The section continues with works by William Blake, artists of the Barbizon School, and a series of James A. M. Whistler etchings, concluding with Impressionist lithographs. Mary Cassatt is represented by the etchings In the Opera Box (No. 3), circa 1880, carrying an estimate of $20,000-$30,000, and Two Ladies in a Loge, Facing Left (No. 2), circa 1882, estimated at $10,000-$15,000. Prominent printmaker and frequent Impressionist collaborator George W. Thornley is available with a run of collaborations, including those with Claude Monet, such as Paysage avec une anse dans un arbre, an 1894 color lithograph estimated at $5,000-$8,000; the Edgar Degas circa 1888 color lithograph L’Attente de la Chanteuse, estimated at $6,000-$9,000; and the circa 1900 Camille Pissarro lithograph Pont a Rouen, estimated at $3,000-$5,000.
A selection of works by Pablo Picasso includes Fumeur a la Cigatette Rouge, a color aquatint from 1964, estimated at $25,000-$35,000; Buste de Femme, a 1955 aquatint estimated at $20,000-$30,000; Picador, a 1953 glazed terre-de-faience plate estimated at $20,000-$30,000; and L’Arlequin et sa Compagne, a circa 1960 color collotype estimated at $15,000-$20,000. Other European stalwarts in the auction include Salvador Dali, Joan Miro, Marc Chagall, Fernand Leger, Georges Braque and more.
Leading the works in the sale by American artists are exceptional Gustave Baumann color woodcuts such as Cottonwoods, which dates to circa 1931 and is estimated at $5,000-$8,000; a run of circa-1930 prints by Frances Gearhart that include In the Sun, The Portal, Wilderness, and Autumn Crowned, each individually estimated at $3,000-$5,000; and Luigi Rist with a 1946 work, Roses #2, and a 1951 work, Peperoni, presented together with an estimate of $1,500-$2,500.
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