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    Sale 11798

    Post-War and Contemporary Art Day Auction

    30 June 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 103

    Michel Majerus (1967-2002)

    (i) 255, (ii) 262, (iii) 555, (iv) 564, (v) 641,
    (vi) 645, (vii) 646, (viii) 654, (ix) 669

    Price Realised  


    Michel Majerus (1967-2002)
    (i) 255, (ii) 262, (iii) 555, (iv) 564, (v) 641,
    (vi) 645, (vii) 646, (viii) 654, (ix) 669
    each signed, titled and dated (on the reverse)
    (i) ‘Majerus 98 255’, (ii) ‘Majerus 98 262’,
    (iii) ‘Majerus 00 555’, (iv) ‘Majerus 00 564’,
    (v) ‘Majerus 00 641’, (vi) ‘Majerus 00 645’,
    (vii) ‘Majerus 00 646’, (viii) ‘Majerus 00 654’,
    (ix) ‘Majerus 00 669’,
    each: acrylic on canvas
    each: 23 5/8 x 23 5/8in. (60 x 60cm.)
    Painted in 1998-2000

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    (i) 255; (ii) 262; (iii) 555; (iv) 564; (v) 641; (vi) 645; (vii) 646; (viii) 654; (ix) 669, 1998-2000 is a compelling and visually striking collection by Belgian artist Michel Majerus. Comprising nine individual paintings assembled together by the artist, the overall composition combines expressive brush strokes, bold text and images taken from magazines and billboards. Rising to fame in the late nineties before his life was tragically cut short in a 2002 plane crash, Majerus was voracious in his appetite for art-historical quotation and Pop- and sub-culture reference, plundering Ruscha, Basquiat, Warhol, Twombly, Richter, Donkey Kong and Pokémon alike. His works questioned the role of the artist as mediator, jarring found media with painterly intrusions in an often disorienting postmodern tableau. With his keen iconographic eye in the age of emergent Internet, Majerus made permeable the boundaries between reality and the constructed environments of the information age. His primary game, however, was an investigation into the role of painting in these new pictorial and simulated spaces. The present work is an electric example of Majerus’ visual vocabulary, a world made of infinite possibility, of fun and openness, remix and appropriation that allow endless cross-fertilising of genre and form. As curator Daniel Birnbaum has said, ‘what’s interesting in Majerus’ work is the radical sense of presence it conveys, and its complete lack of sentimentality. It’s ugly, it’s spectacular, it’s superficial, but there is no reason to moralize or indulge in melancholic reflections upon the loss of authenticity. Majerus does not mourn the death of painting, but instead celebrates the abundance of imagery accumulated throughout the history of art, and generated today with increasing speed by the media and new information technologies’ (D. Birnbaum, “The Power of Now”, in Frieze, Issue 34, May 1997). Majerus treads the new frontiers of paint, positing a medium that will never die but will prove forever fertile and wickedly adaptable to the shifting sands of modern media, corporate design and mass entertainment.

    Special Notice

    Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.


    neugerrimschneider, Berlin.
    Acquired from the above by the present owner.