RELEASE: PARKETT: FIRST FIFTY Editions 1984–1997 - SOUTH kENSINGTON, 26 September 2013

South Kensington - Christie’s is pleased to present a private collection of the complete editions from the first 50 volumes published by Parkett, the Swiss based journal of Contemporary Art, which will be offered in the Parkett: First Fifty Editions 1984-1997 (Vol. 1-50/51) auction on Thursday, 26 September 2013. The fascinating collection, produced from 1984 to 1997 offers 95 works, spanning an extraordinary range of formats, schools and generations, from prints, objects and installations to unique works of art. Almost all the editions offered in this sale have been sold out by the publisher, presenting a unique opportunity for established and new collectors around the world to acquire these works. The works featured in the collection are by many of today’s most eminent contemporary artists, including Gerhard Richter, Andy Warhol, Félix González-Torres to name but a few.

Since 1984, the journal Parkett has explored the work of contemporary artists through a unique publishing model: in collaboration with editors and designers, artists create works for the magazine in editions offered along with the texts and essays of each volume. This fusion of shared ideas produces exciting and explorative content, with the list of contributors reading like a who’s who of the art world.

Parkett’s catalogue has continued to grow since 1997 and has been exhibited around the world at many established cultural institutions including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Whitechapel Gallery, London; the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan and more recently the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, and the Taipei Fine Arts Museum. 

GERHARD RICHTERGreen-Blue-Red (Parkett 35)

In this series Gerhard Richter applies paint directly from the tube along the border of his canvas, pulling the pigments across the surface of his work with a squeegee. Layering blue on red over a base green, the pigments dissipate as they are spread thinly across each preceding layer. These stripes and grids were to dominate during the 1990s. Five further paintings were created in addition to the Parkett series, which the artist held aside as gifts to each of the authors who contributed to the Richter issue. Each work from the 115 produced for the Parkett edition is unique. Green-Blue-Red is expected to realise between £150,000 and £250,000.

ANDY WARHOL Photo Edition for Parkett (Parkett 12)

Andy Warhol’s machine-sewn series of photographs of skeletons appear like a patchwork of macabre figures at a party, their duplicate format mirroring the repetition of his celebrated screenprinted portraits. Warhol’s interest in photography began early in his career and was foundational to his art as an alternative to the sketchbook and diary. This edition is particularly haunting as it was one of Warhol’s last works, arriving at Parkett just a few days after he died in 1987. Photo Edition for Parkett is expected to realise between £7,000 and £10,000.

FÉLIX GONZÁLEZ-TORRES Untitled (Parkett 39)

Félix González-Torres’ monumental billboard depicts footsteps in the sand and turns an advertising format more readily associated with brash taglines and commercial slogans into something much more contemplative, a contemporary memento mori. González-Torres likened art to the trace of footsteps, saying ‘It leaves a mark. It leaves a statement that you were here, that perhaps it is possible to have a different view of life.’  The immersive scale and absence of text suggests layers of meaning and interpretation — a journey, the passing of time, the absence of human presence, the inevitability of death. The accompanying certificate gives the owner the right to install, however this can only be done once, as installation is an integral part of the finished work.  Untitled is expected to realise between £5,000 and £7,000.

There is an astounding breadth to the collection, including Sigmar Polke’s unique photographs (he later collaborated twice more); Meret Oppenheim’s hand-stitched, silkscreened leather gloves; Fischli/Weiss’s rubber record and carved bucket; Martin Kippenberger’s unique books; Hiroshi Sugimoto’s miniature seascapes; Louise Bourgeois’s collaged and embroidered fabrication Reparation; David Hammons’s photograph Money Tree; Rachel Whiteread’s Switch; Damien Hirst’s floating ping pong ball; Cady Noland’s large, sprayed cardboard pillory; and Gabriel Orozco’s Light through Leaves, to name just a few of the many highlights.

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