Super stars at Sotheby’s Milan Spring Sale
Albers, Morandi, Fontana super stars at Sotheby’s Milan Spring Sale
By Alessandra Stefanini @ale_heloise
The Sotheby’s Italia Modern and Contemporary Art auction didn’t disappoint the expectations, with a sale total of € 14.176.250 and almost every lot sold. All eyes were on the two Josef Albers’ Study for: Homage to the Square, both sold for far more than the highest evaluation and both with a thrilling raise of € 300.000 just after a first offer of € 170.000. The yellow Study for: Homage to the square “Towards Fall II” (1961) has been won for € 580.000, the third highest hammer price of the evening, nearly the double of its evaluation; on the second place of this imagined podium, we can find Lucio Fontana’s one-cut “Concetto spaziale, Attese”, executed in 1962 and characterized by an amazing dark blue, sold for € 770.000. “And the winner” is the amazing five-cuts in light gray, “Concetto Spaziale, Attese”, sold for € 840.000, without a doubt one of the top lots of the auction, even because this sale was its first time on the market. Fun fact: this amazing piece of art is curiously inscribed on the reverse with the artist’s words «Accidenti, mi sono dimenticato di prendere la medicina » (Damn it, I forgot to take the pill); through this intimate and touching statement, we’re able to understand Fontana as a man instead of an artist.The Giorgio Morandi’s painting Natura Morta caught anyone unprepared: with an evaluation of € 180.000 — 250.000 the great Italian Master surprised everyone, turning on a quick and exciting competition between the bidders, until the luckiest one finally won the masterpiece for 420.000 euros.
Another coup de théâtre came just few minutes later, with the pleasurable Lucio Fontana’s crucifix in glazed terracotta, evaluated between € 80.000 and 120.000 and sold for the amazing price of € 270.000; a very precious work of art that has been also exposed at the XXIV Venice Biennale in the 1948.
Quite all the “super stars” at the evening auction have shined bright, even if they did not exceed the evaluation, like the Boetti on the cover of the auction catalogue sold for just 60.000 euros less than the maximum estimation, or the four beautiful Castellani.
On the sculpture side, we can see some very good results for Arnaldo Pomodoro: both the works on sale, Sfera and Asse di Movimento I, have been sold for quite more than the estimation; nice results for Fausto Melotti, even if not the best everybody was expecting for.
Some unsold lots did not obscure the Sotheby’s Italia Spring Sale, with a final result that is much better than the last auction on November and some astonishing masterpieces now with a new home.
NB: all the prices in this article are the hammer prices, without the Buyer's Premium.