Five Great Auctions to Watch in February 2017

Around Valentine's Day, one sale will offer representations of love and sex from antiquity to the present day.

Kazuo Shiraga, Untitled (1969). Courtesy Mallet Japan

This month, from London to Tokyo, there’s an eclectic collection of Chinese antiquities going on the block, as well as a wide range of work by blue-chip artists, including Egon Schiele, Bernard Buffet, and Robert Rauschenberg. And one sale, perhaps appropriately themed for lovers, includes works representing love and sex from antiquity to the current day.

In anticipation of the February auctions, and with the help of the artnet Price Database, artnet News has compiled a list of five of the most important sales taking place across the globe.



Robert Rauschenberg, <i>Crown Level (Kabal American Zephyr)</i> (1982). Courtesy Peter Karbstein Kunst &amp; Auctionhaus, Dusseldorf.

Robert Rauschenberg, Crown Level (Kabal American Zephyr) (1982). Courtesy Peter Karbstein Kunst & Auctionhaus, Dusseldorf.

1. “Winterauktion,” Peter Karbstein Kunst & Auktionshaus, Dusseldorf, February 11
This auction offers works by some of the best known artists from the 20th century. Robert Rauschenberg’s Crown Level (Kabal American Zephyr) is a standout lot as is Monochrome blue sponge by Yves Klein.

Yusuf Adebayo Cameron Grillo, <i>The Duet</i> Courtesy Bonham's London.

Yusuf Adebayo Cameron Grillo, The Duet Courtesy Bonham’s London.

2. “Africa Now,” Bonham’s London, February 15
Modern and contemporary African art is presented in “Africa Now,” which features paintings by Yusuf Grillo (The Duet) and Benedict Enwonwu (African Dancers).


Egon Schiele, <i>Akt (Nude)</i> (1917). Courtesy Sotheby's.

Egon Schiele, Akt (Nude) (1917). Courtesy Sotheby’s.

3. “Erotic: Passion & Desire,” Sotheby’s London, February 16
Erotic: Passion & Desire” includes representations of love and sex from antiquity to the present day. Sculpture, painting, and design are up for sale, including Marc Quinn’s Maquette for Sirena, as well as works by Pablo Picasso and Gustav Klimt.


Bernard Buffett, <i>L'Église</i> (1983). Courtesy Mallet Japan

Bernard Buffett, L’Église (1983). Courtesy Mallet Japan

4. “Modern & Contemporary Art,” Mallet Japan, Tokyo, February 16
This auction, which is heavy with prints and works on paper, offers some of the biggest names in modern art from Chagall, Mirò, and Lichtenstein.


Roberto Matta, <i>L'apogée du corrupteur</i>. Courtesy Artcurial Paris

Roberto Matta, L’apogée du corrupteur. Courtesy Artcurial Paris

5. “From Alphonse to Hélène Kann: The Passion of an Artistic Heritage” at Artcurial, Paris, February 22 
A unique sale that ranges from the ancient world to the modern era, “From Alphonse to Hélène Kann: The Passion of an Artistic Heritage” presents works from the collections of Alphonse Kann and his niece Hélène Kann-Bokanowski, tracing the path of a family heritage that survived the tumult of the Second World War. In addition to ancient and medieval works from around the world, the sale offers highlights like paintings from Georges Braque and Olivier Debrè.

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