Live Now on Artnet Auctions: Don’t Miss the Exciting Opportunity to Collect a Rare Work on Canvas by Graffiti Artist Dondi White

Learn more about the street artist hailed as one of the most innovative of his generation.

Dondi White, "Runner," 1983. Available now in Contemporary Select on Artnet Auctions. Est. $200,000-300,000.

Dondi White was one of the most stylistically innovative and influential graffiti artists of his generation. Born in Brooklyn, New York in 1961, he began his artistic career as a young man when he joined a group of graffiti artists known as The Odd Partners, who worked primarily on the M, J, and L subway lines. In 1978, Dondi started his own crew, Crazy Inside Artists, in which he continued to push the limits of his graffiti aesthetic. In 1980 he ventured from subway tagging to the canvas after becoming involved with Essex Studio Project, an organization aimed at widening the audience for graffiti during an era when the city was intently trying to scrub it from subway trains.

Deeply involved in the creative community of the era, Dondi rubbed shoulders with other graffiti greats such as Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and Futura2000. Dondi’s work Runner (1983) is an exhilarating example of the canvas-painting period of his career. Now through August 12, bid on Runner (1983) in our Contemporary Select sale on Artnet Auctions.

Runner (1983) is an important painting in the development of Dondi’s mature style. The “R” boldly spray-painted on the canvas acts as both a symbol and subject of action in and of itself. Dondi has personified the letter into the likeness of a runner— a creative gesture that hints at the trajectory his work would continue to follow. Later in his career, Dondi began to include figuration in the form of stick figures and symbolic icons, creating a blend of fine art and graffiti art with every line and letter carefully considered as an element and an opportunity for the artist to convey his skill or attitude.

The average sale price for a work by Dondi frequently exceeds the mean estimate, signaling a consistently high demand.

Works by Dondi rarely come up on the secondary market, as they have historically been privately held or traded among a select few street art aficionados, making Runner (1983) a particularly exciting collecting opportunity. When works by Dondi do appear at auction, they are often pencil or ink drawings and studies, used by the artist to plan his spray-painted works to perfection. Runner (1983), meanwhile, is a fully realized and completed work of aerosol paint on canvas. The last time a work of this caliber appeared at auction in 2018, it sold for $240,000 at Artnet Auctions. The current estimate of $200,000–300,000 is reflective of the growing demand for works by Dondi, and their rarity on the secondary market. 

Don’t miss the chance to grow your collection with a dynamic work by one of the world’s most celebrated street artists—bidding on Runner (1983) is live through August 12.

Please don’t hesitate to contact the specialist for this work, Jason Rulnick, with any questions or concerns.

Senior Specialist, Contemporary Art

+1-212-497-9700 ext. 161

[email protected]


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