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

    Sale 12123

    First Open | Post-War and Contemporary Art | NY

    28 September 2016, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 245

    Mel Bochner (b. 1940)


    Estimate

    Mel Bochner (b. 1940)

    Mel Bochner (b. 1940)
    Untitled
    signed and dated 'Bochner 1972' (lower right)
    gelatin silver print
    5 x 7 1/2 in. (12.7 x 19 cm.)
    Executed in 1972.

    Provenance
    The Estate of Ileana Sonnabend, acquired directly from the artist
    By descent to the present owner

    Mel Bochner (b. 1940)
    Untitled
    signed and dated 'Bochner 1978' (lower right)
    gelatin silver print
    6 x 8 3/4 in. (15.2 x 22.2 cm.)
    Executed in 1978.

    Provenance
    The Estate of Ileana Sonnabend, acquired directly from the artist
    By descent to the present owner

    Mel Bochner (b. 1940)
    Untitled
    signed and dated 'Bochner 1972' (lower right)
    gelatin silver print
    5 x 7 1/2 in. (12.7 x 19 cm.)
    Executed in 1972.

    Provenance
    The Estate of Ileana Sonnabend, acquired directly from the artist
    By descent to the present owner


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    As a pioneer of American Conceptualism in the 1960s and 1970s, artist, critic, theorist, and Wittgenstein aficionado Mel Bochner posed paradigm-shifting questions about whether art was necessarily an object and about what remained when the art object vanished or was removed. Alongside a new generation of artists including Eva Hesse, Donald Judd, and Robert Smithson, Bochner developed a cool aesthetic approach that countered the impassioned effusiveness of Abstract Expressionism. His 1966 exhibit “Working Drawings And Other Visible Things On Paper Not Necessarily Meant to Be Viewed As Art,” in which he photocopied the working drawings of friends including Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt, John Cage, and Dan Flavin and inserted the copies into binders on pedestals, is widely considered to be the first Conceptual art exhibition. Other major contributions by Bochner include his groundbreaking conceptual photography and his insertion of language into the space of the visual in his text portraits and later thesaurus paintings. One-man exhibitions of Bochner’s work have been held at The Jewish Museum, The National Gallery in Washington DC, and the Art Institute of Chicago, among others.

    Pre-Lot Text

    WORKS FROM THE COLLECTION OF ILEANA SONNABEND AND THE ESTATE OF NINA CASTELLI SUNDELL