Now on Artnet Auctions: Explore How German Artist Imi Knoebel Brings Architectural Elements to Painting
Bidding is live now through January 21.
In his painting Chateau Lagrezette, artist Imi Knoebel manages to create an architectural experience. By displacing warmer colors like red, orange, and pink to the margins of the composition, Knoebel invites the viewer to move around the edges of the work and experience it as an object in space, rather than a flat canvas. Live for bidding now through January 21 in our contemporary art sale, Chateau Lagrezette presents the opportunity to collect a significant work by the renowned German artist.
Known for his contributions to the 20th-century Minimalist movement, Knoebel was born in Dessau, Germany, in 1940. Educated at the famed Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, Knoebel befriended artists Joseph Beuys and Blinky Palermo in school. His early work was often monochromatic, but it was not until he discovered the teachings of renowned colorist Johannes Itten that he began to explore stronger color relationships and a bright palette. Today, Knoebel is known as one of the leading contemporary Minimalist painters, as well as one of the most celebrated German contemporary artists.
While Chateau Lagrezette is typical of Knoebel in material, very few works of this scale or price point by the artist have ever come to auction, making this work a valuable find for both avid Knoebel collectors and those looking to expand their collections.
In the past six years, the market for Knoebel’s work has exploded. Total global auction sales volume for the artist increased from $520,485 in 2014 to $4.79 million in 2019, an astounding 820 percent increase. In those same years, Knoebel’s average sale price more than doubled, while the mean estimate for works by the artist nearly tripled. The years 2016 and 2017 saw record hammer prices for Knoebel, with multiple works achieving more than $460,000. Overall, Chateau Lagrezette’s estimate of $150,000–200,000 is an approachable entry point for works of this size and style.
Acquired by the present owner from Helga de Alvear, one of the most prominent gallerists and collectors in Europe, the work’s provenance is also significant. De Alvear has introduced other German artists including Thomas Ruff, Candida Höfer, and Katharina Grosse to wider audiences of international collectors. This particular work by Knoebel was selected by de Alvear to be shown at ARCO Madrid, a stamp of approval from a true tastemaker and visionary.
Imi Knoebel’s work is an ongoing investigation into formalism and the very medium of painting itself, and his status as a long-established power player in the Minimalist genre proves that his work will hold its value over time. Chateau Lagrezette will make a subtly beautiful addition to any collection.
Click here to place your bids before January 21.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out directly to the specialist for this lot, Lauren Berkaw, with any questions.
Specialist, Contemporary Art
+1 (212) 497-9700 ext. 118
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