American masters

Two works from American galleries on display at Masterpiece

 

Business on the opening day at Masterpiece 2014 was brisk with one dealership, Symbolic & Chase, selling a 1912 Cartier corsage for in excess of $20 million (£11.75 million). Our friends at Apter-Fredericks, equally, were delighted to sell an important mirror in the first hour and the pair of pagoda top cabinets we featured for a seven figure sum later in the day.

 

I spent both the preview day and yesterday at the fair and though I still haven’t managed to cover even half of it in depth, I share here a couple more highlights that I discovered that are on offer through two American exhibitors.

 

“Guard Rail” by Allan D’Arcangelo (1964)

The first, an acrylic on canvas with cyclone and fencing with barbed wire by the Pop artist Allan D’Arcangelo (1930 – 1998), is the star of the Washington based Geoffrey Diner Gallery’s stand. Priced at $600,000 (£352,000) ‘Guard Rail’ evokes thoughts about the US border with Mexico and Guantanamo Bay concentration camp. Gifted by D’Arcangelo to the Whitney Museum of American Art and exhibited at both the San Paulo Bieniale in 1967 and the Va. Museum of Fine Arts, this bold work is typical of this renowned artist’s “Barriers” series.

 

“News of All Worlds” by Victor Dubreuil (circa 1892)

The second, an oil on canvas titled the “News of All the World” – for sale through New York based Collisart, LLC – has timely resonance in the wake of Rebekah Brooks being cleared this week. Painted by a banker turned thief turned artist named Victor Dubreuil (1842 – circa 1900) and featuring a newsboy “possibly trying to fool his customers” by offering newspapers of differing dates and places, here is a work that is “delightfully complex”. Given a previous owner of the painting was The New York Times publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger (1926 – 2012), perhaps Rupert Murdoch should put in a bid.

 

 

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