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Lost and Found: A large oil painting by the artist – a first on Europe's auction market - Helen Frankenthaler

10-31-2016 10:53 AM CET | Arts & Culture

Press release from: Ketterer Kunst

Helen Frankenthaler, Marchioness, 1978, oil on canvas,  41.7 x 144 in, estimate: ? 250,000-350,000.

Helen Frankenthaler, Marchioness, 1978, oil on canvas, 41.7 x 144 in, estimate: ? 250,000-350,000.

Munich, 27 October 2016 (kk) – For over 30 years, the work had been forgotten in a basement in the South of Germany. Now, Helen Frankenthaler’s “Marchioness” will not only get to see the light of day, but also the spotlight of the salesroom. The impressive work will be sold in the auctions of Modern Art / Post War and Contemporary Art at Ketterer Kunst in Munich from December 8-10.

This will be the first time that an original large-format painting by the acclaimed New York artist will be offered at auction in Europe. Helen Frankenthaler's career spanned more than six decades when she died in 2011 in Connecticut. Her direct contact with the founding members of Abstract Expressionism helped her play a key role during the transition from Abstract Expressionism to Color Field Painting. She counts among the most important American art world personalities of the 20th century.

The young artist met Jackson Pollock and Robert Motherwell in New York's avant-garde art scene of the 1950s; she was married to the latter from 1958 to 1971. Surrounded by these artists, Frankenthaler managed to attain her own spontaneous-abstract and idiosyncratic style. Discovered by the renowned art critic Clement Greenberg in 1959, her works were then regularly shown at important international exhibitions, such as the Kassel documenta, and the Venice Biennale. Her first museum show opened in New York in 1960.

Inspired by Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock, Helen Frankenthaler developed an expressive and abstract style that is characterized by a subjective spontaneity and yet almost harmonious poetry. From the early 1970s on, she executed her paintings preferably on a huge canvas in landscape format. This panorama-like arrangement of the composition evokes in the observer a feeling of being practically surrounded by the painting. This “immersion into the color space” is not created through a perceived depth of a homogenous, almost monochrome color field, as is the case in classic Color Field Painting, but rather through the work's extreme sideways elongation; this is also the case with “Marchioness”, where Frankenthaler indeed reaches the limits of what can optically be grasped. The work is estimated at € 250,000 – 350,000 (US$ 275,000 – 385,000).

Other top lots in the section of Modern Art are by, among others, Cuno Amiet, Otto Dix, Auguste Herbin, Karl Hofer, Alexej von Jawlensky, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Paul Klee, Otto Mueller, Emil Nolde, Hermann Max Pechstein, Georg Schrimpf, Marianne von Werefkin and Eugeniusz Zak. The section of Post War Art offers captivating works by Willi Baumeister, Sam Francis, Heinz Mack, Otto Piene, Günther Uecker and Victor Vasarely, while the department of Contemporary Art comes up with exciting works by artists like Martin Eder, Eberhard Havekost, Roman Kochanski, Stefan Kürten, David LaChapelle, Alex Mirutziu, Dasha Shishkin, Alexander Ernst Voigt and Cornelius Völker.

Previews in Germany and Switzerland:
03-05 November, Ketterer Kunst, Holstenwall 5, 20355 Hamburg*
08/09 November, Galerie elten & elten, Wilfriedstr. 19, 8032 Zurich, CH*
14/15 November, Galerie Schwind, Fahrgasse 8, 60311 Frankfurt*
18-21 November, Ketterer Kunst, Malkastenstr. 11, 40211 Dusseldorf*
25 Nov - 02 Dec., Ketterer Kunst, Fasanenstr. 70, 10719 Berlin*
04 - 09 December, Ketterer Kunst, Joseph-Wild-Str. 18, 81829 Munich**
* selected works ** all works

Auction in Munich: Modern Art / POST WAR /Contemporary Art from 8-10 December

Since it was founded in 1954, Ketterer Kunst has been on the forefront of auction houses dealing in Fine Art and Rare Books, with its headquarters in Munich, and a branch in Hamburg. Representatives' offices in Berlin, Heidelberg, Duesseldorf, in the Benelux Union, France, Italy, Switzerland, as well as in the USA have contributed substantially to the company's success. In addition, exhibitions, special thematic and charity auctions as well as monthly online auctions at are regular events at Ketterer Kunst. Robert Ketterer is owner and CEO of Ketterer Kunst.

Press inquiries:

Ketterer Kunst
Joseph-Wild-Str. 18
81829 München
Michaela Derra M.A.
Telefon: +49-(0)89-55244-152
Fax: +49-(0)89-55244-177

Client inquiries:

Ketterer Kunst
Joseph-Wild-Str. 18
81829 Munich
Tel. +49-(0)55244-444
Fax.: +49-(0)55244-177

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