Friday, April 1, 2011

PHOTOGRAPHS - Steve McCurry, Irving Penn, Cindy Sherman, Robert Frank, Sebastiao Salgado

Phillips de Pury & Company is auctioning approximately 260 photographs taken by a few well-known photographers. After stumbling upon this exhibit, I realized just "how well known" some of these photographers were. Irving Penn, Diane Arbus, Cindy Sherman, Robert Frank, Edward Weston, and Steve McCurry to name a handful of them. Upon seeing the photographs, you could quickly figure out why it was theirs -- it was because of their style, because of what they chose to photograph, and because some of them are iconic images.

There were other photographer's work that I did not immediately recognize, however, when you walk up to the description, you may chuckle as I did as I realized "aha, yes, of course!"... And they were equally as well-known and famous as the others ... it was the works of Henri Cartier Bresson, Richard Avedon, and Sebastiao Salgado. Other photographers who I am not familiar with their works include Desiree Dolron, Peter Lindberg, Elger Esser, among others are present.

A few photographs that I enjoyed viewing included:
  • Sebastiao Salgado - Chinstrap Penguins , with an opening price of $12,000-$15,000. I saw some of his works during my photography walking tour where he photographed a group of workers along a hillside and made it look like an ant-farm. This picture of the elephants was no different, he had the same style and, in my opinion, witty sense of photographing everyday people/objects to make it humorous. Another interesting one was An Elephant Ghost World.
  • Henri Cartier Bresson's - Brie, with an opening price of $8,000-$12,000. The photograph is of Alberto Giacometti working. I thought this photo was intriguing, particularly since I have seen Bresson's work at the MoMa, and while his pieces were at the MoMA, Giacommetti's scultpure work was downstairs. So this photo, at least to me, reminds me of that exhibit and made me chuckle because of how decades later both their work were exhibited in one location.
  • Irving Penn - Miles Davis, with an opening price of $25,000 - $35,000. The photo is of a "hand" holding a trumpet, with a few fingers extended. This photo may not say anything at first viewing, however, after reading who the hand belongs to, you'll understand the significance of this photo because it is Miles Davis' hand.
  • Lastly, I truly enjoyed seeing Steve McCurry's "Afghan Girl", with an opening price of $10,000-$15,000 (image is not signed). I enjoyed seeing this piece because he came to speak at the David Alan Harvey "At Home" Workshop and spoke about this one image among his many other photographs taken in Asia. Additionally, the Afghan Girl was the cover on the National Geographic Magazine in 1985 and the photograph has been republished in numerous books and posters. In 2003, National Geographic found the Afghan girl, and to her surprise, she didn't realize her face was made so popular. For more info on that story, click here and for more info about the photo used as cover for national geographic, click here.

With that being said, you will have to go and see it for yourself, and hopefully, you'll find some works that you may know and enjoy. The auction viewing will be made available until April 8th, with opening hours Monday to Saturday from 10 am to 6 pm and on Sunday from 12 - 6 p.m. The auction for the photographs will be held on April 9th. There is an "opening reception" held today from 4-7 p.m. where cocktails and hor d' oeuvres will be served.


Phillips de Pury & Company

450 Park Avenue (cross street is 57th Street)

Auction will be held April 9 with the first session at 11 am and the second session at 2 pm
Online viewing of items to be auctioned.
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