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Saturday, September 30, 2017

Abstract Works at Swann Auction Galleries' October 2017 Sale

Last week, I presented the four Beauford Delaney figurative works that are being offered during Swann Auction Galleries' Autumn 2017 sale of African-American Fine Art. This week, I am featuring the abstracts.

Untitled (Green Drip Abstraction)
(Lot 40) is a gouache on wove paper.

Untitled (Green Drip Abstraction)
(1958) Gouache on wove paper
603x483 mm; 23.75x19 inches
Image courtesy of Swann Auction Galleries
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

It is signed, dated, and inscribed "To Lucien, on his birthday with affection from Beauford Delaney Paris 1958." It is likely that "Lucien" is Lucien Happersberger, lover and lifelong friend of James Baldwin.

The estimated value of this work is $8,000 - $12,000.


Untitled (Brown and Orange Abstraction)
(Lot 41) is also a gouache on wove paper.

Untitled (Brown and Orange Abstraction)
(1958-59) Gouache on wove paper
660x483 mm; 26x20 inches.
Signed and inscribed "To Jimmy with love Beauford Happy Birthday"
in ink, lower center.
Image courtesy of Swann Auction Galleries
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

It was a gift from Beauford to James Baldwin for Baldwin's birthday, which was August 2. Baldwin spent a great deal of time with Beauford in Clamart during the summers of 1958 and 1959 - the approximate dates ascribed to this work.

The estimated value of Untitled (Brown and Orange Abstraction) is $8,000 - $12,000.


Untitled (Green, Red and Yellow Abstraction)
(Lot 55) is a watercolor on wove paper.

Untitled (Green, Red and Yellow Abstraction)
(1964) Watercolor on wove paper
648x502 mm; 25 1/2x19 3/4 inches.
Initialed, dated and inscribed "Paris", in ball point pen and blue ink, lower center.
Signed and dated in ball point pen and blue ink, lower right.
Image courtesy of Swann Auction Galleries
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

1964 was a busy year for Beauford. He participated in many group shows as well as a solo exhibition at the Galerie Lambert, in which abstractions and portraits were displayed.

I do not know whether Untitled (Green, Red and Yellow Abstraction) was publicly shown in 1964. Its estimated value is $10,000 - $15,000.

Untitled (Abstract Composition) (Lot 56) is another watercolor on wove paper.

Untitled (Abstract Composition)
(1965) Watercolor on wove paper
546x457 mm; 21 1/2x18 inches.
Signed, dated and inscribed "avec amour" in ink.
Image courtesy of Swann Auction Galleries
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

In 1965, Beauford wrote the following about his work in a letter to Henry Miller:

Something has happened to my color and the paintings seem to have sunlight and the feeling sometimes of all you wonderful people it has been my privilege to have as friends and architects of the spirit.

One can easily visualize the brilliant yellow in this work as sunshine filtering through thick foliage, perhaps from the vantage point of a wrought iron grill over a window.

The estimated value of Untitled (Abstract Composition) is $8,000 - $12,000.

The auction will take place at 2:30 PM on Thursday, October 5, 2017. Preview dates are as follows: September 30 from 12-5 PM; October 2 to 4, 10 AM to 6 PM; October 5, 10 AM - noon.

For more information, contact Nigel Freeman at
.

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