Explore 6 Unmissable Lots From New Orleans Auction Galleries Sale

The Modern and Contemporary Art and Design sale is taking place April 18, 2024.

Vamdrup Stolefabrik, Dining Table and Four Chairs. Est. $1,500–$2,500. Photo: Jacqueline Marque. Courtesy of New Orleans Auction Galleries.

This month, New Orleans Auction Galleries will stage its Modern and Contemporary Art and Design sale, a cross-category sale that brings together a mix of international blue chip artists, Southern Regional artists, and a dynamic range of 19th- and 20th-century furniture and decorative arts. Taking place April 18, 2024, at 10 a.m. CDT, the sale is exemplary of the house’s three decades of business and team of in-house experts and researchers.

Explore six scene-stealing lots from the forthcoming Modern and Contemporary Art and Design Sale.

Richard Anuszkiewicz, Reflection IV-Red (1979)

A rectangular abstract painting in portrait orientation with purple red and green on a teak paneled wall.

Richard Anuszkiewicz, Reflection IV-Red (1979). Est. $5,000–$8,000. Photo: Jacqueline Marque. Courtesy of New Orleans Auction Galleries.

American painter Richard Anuszkiewics (1930–2020) was an influential figure within the Op art and Hard-edge painting movements of the 20th century, recognized for his deft use of color and mesmerizing compositions. His work during the 1970s, from which the present lot is dated, was marked by a meditative air, wherein the colors of the silk screen appear to radiate based on the arrangement of line and shape as well as juxtaposition of colors. Ultimately, his practice was a testament to the pursuit of purity of line and color, and a cornerstone of geometric abstraction.

Gordon Parks, American Gothic, Washington, D.C. (Ellen Watson) (2021)

A black-and-white-portrait of a black woman in wire rim glasses and polkadot dress holding a mop and broom standing in front of an American flag in the background.

Gordon Parks, American Gothic, Washington, D.C. (Ellen Watson) (2021). Est. $5,000–$8,000. Courtesy of New Orleans Auction Galleries.

Gordon Parks (1912–2006) is recognized as one of the most important photographers of the past century, with his work frequently engaging with racism as well as documenting the realities of Black Americans. American Gothic, which was taken in 1942, stands as one of his most well-recognized works, produced the year he was awarded the Rosenwald Fellowship that saw him apprentice at the Farm Security Administration. The image is of an office cleaning person whom he became familiar with in Washington, D.C., and who herself and community became a source of both subject matter and inspiration.

Gordon Parks, Bessie And Little Richard (Fontenelle) the Morning After She Scalded Her Husband, Harlem, New York (1967 negative, printed ca. 1990s)

Black-and-white portrait of a black woman laying down with face turned away with a small boy in her arms.

Gordon Parks, Bessie And Little Richard (Fontenelle) The Morning After She Scalded Her Husband, Harlem, New York (1967 negative, printed ca. 1990s). Est. $2,000–$4,000. Courtesy of New Orleans Auction Galleries.

Another image by Parks, this photograph was featured in a multipart LIFE magazine editorial dating from 1968 that documented the impoverishment of Black Americans in cities across the United States. Parks was the only Black photographer on staff at the magazine, and focused his lens on the Fontenelle family, comprised of Richard and Bessie and their nine children—with Little Richard who was 3 years old being the youngest. Over the course of several weeks, Parks captured the a range of intimate and poignant moments with the family.

Christopher Wool, Woman III (2005)

A large-scale silkscreen ink on paper in black and white, gestural and abstract, against a teak lined wall.

Christopher Wool, Woman III (2005). Est. $200,000–$400,000.
Photo: Jacqueline Marque. Courtesy of New Orleans Auction Galleries.

Abstract artist Christopher Wool (b. 1955) maintains a practice that regularly incorporates ideas and themes around Post-conceptualism. Many of his works incorporate the use of text and language, but his abstractions emphasize his interest in resisting easy categorization. Using tools such as rollers, stamps, and stencils, Wool brings to the fore the process of making, and in contrast works made directly by the artist’s hand, such as Woaman III (2005), draws sharp attention to the maker himself. Created in homage to a series by Willem de Kooning depicting female figures, Wool’s triptych reflects on the use of medium and the synthetization of concept and emotion.

Holton Rower, 150501i (2015)

Holton Rower, 150501i (2015). Est: $7,000–$10,000. Courtesy of New Orleans Auction Galleries.

The grandson of Alexander Calder, Holton Rower (b. 1962) creates dizzyingly intricate compositions through a meticulous process of pouring paint on plywood panels, letting the pigment pool and flair across the surface. A delicate balance between the artist’s guiding hand and the unexpected movement of paint coalesce and blur the line between process and painting. The buildup of the paint in Rower’s work also evokes relief sculpture, providing a third dimension from which the viewer can experience the work.

Dale Chihuly, Winter Yellow Macchia with Ice Blue Lip (1999)

A large blown glass bowl organically shaped with a light in its center making it seem to glow.

Dale Chihuly, Winter Yellow Macchia with Ice Blue Lip (1999). Est. $18,000–$25,000. Courtesy of New Orleans Auction Galleries.

Arguably one of the most well-known glass artists working today, Dale Chihuly (b. 1941) is recognized for bringing hand-blown glass into the field of large-scale sculpture. His work is most often brightly colored and references organic forms from nature, such as in the present lot that evokes the shape of some exotic flower. Monumental in size, measuring just over three feet in width, it speaks to Chihuly’s masterful engagement with scale as well as color and form.

New Orleans Auction Galleries’ Modern and Contemporary Art and Design Sale will be held April 18, 2024.

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