The Skinny: Take a Fully-Functional Ai Weiwei Bicycle for a Spin

The limited-edition work is fully functional.

Ai Weiwei Untitled (2014). Photo: courtesy artnet Auctions.

The Skinny is a series that explores artworks of note currently offered on artnet Auctions. This week we take a look at highlights this season’s Contemporary Art Sale, including works by Ai Weiwei, Guillermo Kuitca, and Kour Pour.

Who: Ai Weiwei

What: Untitled (2014) (pictured above), a mixed media work, primarily in stainless steel in an edition of 60, estimated to sell for between $25,000 to $35,000.

Why: The artist created this bicycle in an edition of 60 for the occasion of the Brooklyn Museum’s recent survey exhibition Ai Weiwei: According to What? The bicycle is recurring theme in Ai’s work while also representing the primary mode of transportation for many Chinese. This work is fully functional, and not just decorative. It includes an image of the artist’s face on the seat, and is stamped, signed, and numbered. It also is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity.

Guillermo Kuitca Untitled (1997). Photo: artnet Auctions.

Guillermo Kuitca Untitled (1997). Photo: artnet Auctions.

Who: Guillermo Kuitca

What: Untitled (1997), an acrylic and colored pencil on canvas work, estimated to sell for between $80,000 to $120,000.

Why: Untitled (1997) is a large painting by Argentinian contemporary artist Guillermo Kuitca, which demonstrates the artist’s interest in architecture, cartography, and mathematics. Upon closer inspection, what appears to be a gestural scribble on a dark background actually reveals a carefully constructed chain of repeated number sequences. This work exemplifies the artist’s striking interpretations of stadium architectures, with each small numbered box representative of a single seat.

Kour Pour Mousepad (2014). Photo: artnet Auctions.

Kour Pour Mousepad (2014). Photo: artnet Auctions.

Who: Kour Pour

What: Mousepad (2014), an Inkjet and acrylic on canvas laid over panel work, estimated to sell for between $4,500 and $6,500.

Why: Kour Pour is known primarily for his large-scale tapestry-like canvasses, but at 9 x 7 x 1.25 in. this work by the British-Iranian artist is uncharacteristically small. The artist’s meticulous process is reflected in his astoundingly detailed paintings, which combine digital and manual techniques, to carefully recreate antique rugs and carpets on canvas. One of Stefan Simchowitz’s protégés, the artist is one of the rising stars of the emerging contemporary art scene.

The “Contemporary Art” auction is live through October 27, 2016 on artnet Auctions.

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