• First Open | Post-War and Cont auction at Christies

    Sale 12724

    First Open | Post-War and Contemporary Art | London

    29 September 2016, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 35

    Ugo Rondinone (B. 1964)

    No. 239 dritterjanuarzweitausendundeins

    Price Realised  

    Ugo Rondinone (B. 1964)
    No. 239 dritterjanuarzweitausendundeins

    acrylic on glass reinforced plastic with Plexiglas
    59 x 157 ½in. (150 x 400cm.)
    Executed in 2000


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    With its carefully-measured horizontal bands of flat colour spanning four metres in width, Ugo Rondinone’s Dreissigsterjunizweitausendundnull is a monumental work from his series of striped abstract panoramas. Closely related to the artist’s celebrated ‘target’ paintings, these works occupy a central position in Rondinone’s diverse multimedia practice. Casting a hypnotic spell over the viewer, their mesmerizing surfaces exemplify the explorations of subjective experience that, since the 1990s, have propelled the artist to critical acclaim. Created largely during the early 2000s, they operate in dialogue with the transcendental aspirations of the so-called ‘abstract sublime’ as espoused by the 1960s Colour Field painters: whilst their trance-like bands of colour initially seem to invoke a state of meditative calm, their flat surfaces and clinical application of paint ultimately resist any promise of spiritual fulfilment. In addition, by titling each work after the date of its completion, Rondinone grounds his work in the banality of daily existence: his creations are not vehicles for sublimation, but rather objects that testify to the quotidian passage of time. As the artist explains, ‘I understand art as essentially static, which creates its own artificial gravity system, where the work states its own void or abyss’ (U. Rondinone, quoted in Ugo Rondinone: How Does It Feel?, exh. cat., Le Centquatre, Paris, 2009, p. 52). Drawing the viewer into its depths, only to repel their gaze, Dreissigsterjunizweitausendundnull bears witness to this very condition.

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    Provenance

    Galerie Almine Rech, Paris.
    Acquired from the above by the present owner.


    Pre-Lot Text

    Property of a Distinguished Collector


    Literature

    JRP-Ringier (ed.), Zero build a nest in my navel, exh.cat., Whitechapel Gallery, London, Zurich 2005 (illustrated in colour, p. 190).


    Post Lot Text

    Please note that this work is accompanied by a Plexiglas caption.