Works collected by Christo and Jeanne-Claude arrive at Sotheby’s

[05/02/2021]
 Jeanne-Claude et Christo en 1995. Claude Lebus

Jeanne-Claude et Christo en 1995. Claude Lebus

Like all artists, CHRISTO (1935-2020) and Jean-Claude fraternized with other artists and in some cases became very close friends. And like most artists, they also acquired and surrounded themselves with artworks they particularly liked. Christo and Jeanne Claude together acquired some exceptional pieces during their lives including works by Andy WARHOL, Marcel DUCHAMP, Lucio FONTANA and Yves Klein. Sotheby’s is about to disperse their entire collection on 17 February in Paris (Part I) and online from 8 to 18 February (Part II). The sale, which was prepared over a year ago but postponed due to the pandemic, will include some 400 lots.

Of these 400 or so works, 107 have been earmarked for the sale on 17 February, with estimates ranging from 3,000 to 1 million euros. The most prestigious work is a Jackie by Andy Warhol dated 1964 and acquired from David Bourdon in New York. Then comes an austere but no less superb Concetto Spaziale, Attesa by Lucio Fontana, a single slit on a raw canvas for which Sotheby’s is expecting between 300,000 and 500,000 euros. Fontana was one of the first to acquire Christo’s works long before the artists met in Milan in 1963, precisely the creation year of this work “affectionately” dedicated to Jeanne-Claude.

There will also be a number of important works by the Christo duo… works linked to some of their outstanding projects such as Umbrellas (Japan, United States) and L’Empaquetage du Pont Neuf in Paris and carrying estimates between 200,000 and 300,000 euros.

Gerrit Thomas RIETVELD, Hoge Stoel (1919)

Gerrit Thomas RIETVELD, Hoge Stoel (1919)

Moving down the price ladder to around 100,000 euros, there is a small blue Monochrome by Yves KLEIN (21.5 x 17.5 cm), a ‘baton’ by André CADERE (1934-1978), a Hoge armchair by Gerrit Thomas RIETVELD and even a bronze sculpture by Joan MIRO. Other interesting pieces by Nam June PAIK, Gordon MATTA-CLARK and Marcel Duchamp are being offered in a 15,000 to 30,000 euros price range… still in the Part I sale on 17 February.

For smaller budgets, the online sale is offering a wide choice over five days and a large number of affordable works between 200 and 1,500 euros. It’s a perfect opportunity to acquire a small work by Joseph BEUYS or by ARMAN, for example, while paying tribute to the memory of this mythical Contemporary art duo (Christo & Jean-Claude). Indeed, profits from the two sales will go to the artists’ beneficiaries who are planning to create a foundation.