New Orleans Auction Galleries is a favorite among collectors and dealers—and with good reason. The popular auction house draws on the unique cultural mix and heritage of the city and region and offers a high-quality, rare and eclectic selection of art and objects.
On April 24, the house will hold its “Modern and contemporary art + design‘ auction featuring an impressive variety of Paintings, Prints, Sculptures, Furniture, Pottery & Lighting Design.
Works from the estate of Houston collector Nancy R. Morrison will be a highlight of the auction, including a stunning pleated sculpture by Lynda Benglis, a powerful painting by American modernist Dorothy Hood and a special collection of contemporary Southwestern works. Art and furniture from fashion designer Adam Lippe’s collection will go under the hammer, as well as an impressive selection of paintings and sculptures by Louisiana artists.
With hundreds of lots to explore, we’ve picked 5 favorites that you won’t want to miss.
In chancellor Benglis uses the hard, uncompromising metals favored by male artists of the ’60s and ’70s in creating their ‘hard-edged’ minimalist work, which she transforms here into ‘softer’ forms reminiscent of feminine bows, pleats and ruffles. The artist herself has commented that these shapes were inspired in part by a nostalgia for the time she spent crocheting with her grandmother, one of the most important and influential figures in her life. Through this juxtaposition of material and form, Benglis questions concepts of social norms, cultural symbolism, and the meaning of knots in ancient cultures (like the Inca Quipu). This remarkable work comes from the estate of Houston art collector Nancy R. Morrison.
One of the most popular modern artists of the Expressionist movement, Roualt was celebrated for his use of bold graphic lines. As the gouache offered here demonstrates, the artist was able to combine a strategically limited color palette with assertive brushstrokes to create a work full of emotion and energy. This work came to Morrison as part of an auction of works from the Frank Sinatra collection at Christie’s New York.
Flame blown glass garnet basket (2018)
One of the most famous and well-known glass artists, Chihuly has been creating his colorful and striped vessels for over 50 years. He was one of the first Americans to gain access to the Murano glassblowing workshops in Venice, and he incorporated the techniques he learned there into his approach to the medium upon his return to the United States. The work offered here is a rare and unusual garnet basket.
Minotaur and Hare on Rust (1993)
Sophie Ryder has created her own mythology, a world populated by a menagerie of mongrels, minotaurs and dogs. Her earliest anthropomorphized figures were monumental constructions intended for outdoor environments and open spaces. Crafted from intricately bent and twisted wire, mixed with sawdust, plastic, found objects and metal, these sculptures effortlessly take their place in their natural surroundings. These hybrid characters with human bodies and animal heads are allowed a degree of freedom of expression, independent of societal expectations or constraints, allowing Ryder to comment on human emotions, relationships, and motivations. The sculpture offered here, the Lady Rabbit and Minotauris a group of figures that Ryder has revisited in various configurations for decades.
Logan Maxwell Hagege
Floating skull at Vermillion Cliffs (2012)
Hagage’s modern vision of the American West is a landscape distilled to its purest essence. The large areas of color, the masterful use of light and the observation of nature merge in a place where fantasy and realism coexist. He is a keen observer of nature, yet interprets it with his own unique “stylized realism” by overlaying patterns and geometric shapes to create visual road maps for the viewer. In this example, the clouds are made up of huge arching curves, reflecting the shape of the horns on the floating skull as well as the ridges in the mesa.
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