ANN CRAVEN (B. 1967)
ANN CRAVEN (B. 1967)
ANN CRAVEN (B. 1967)
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This lot has been imported from outside of the UK … Read more
ANN CRAVEN (B. 1967)

Stepping Out With Cherries, 2011

ANN CRAVEN (B. 1967)
Stepping Out With Cherries, 2011
signed, titled and dated twice 'Ann Craven 2011 "Stepping Out With Cherries" 2011' (on the overlap)
oil on canvas
60 x 48in. (152.4 x 121.9cm.)
Painted in 2011
Maccarone, New York.
Private Collection.
Anon. sale, Phillips New York, 14 November 2018, lot 304.
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner.
Helsinki, Galerie Forsblom, Ann Craven, 2011.
Paris, Galerie Perrotin, Souvenir, 2013.
Special notice
This lot has been imported from outside of the UK for sale and placed under the Temporary Admission regime. Import VAT is payable at 5% on the hammer price. VAT at 20% will be added to the buyer’s premium but will not be shown separately on our invoice.

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Lot Essay

Spanning a metre and a half in height, Stepping Out With Cherries (2011) is a sumptuous example of Ann Craven’s iconic bird paintings. Against a velvety dark backdrop, the creature is illuminated in soft pink, seated upon a curved branch. Clusters of cherries are suspended behind it, their glistening red forms creating a near-abstract pattern against the night sky. Alongside moons and flowers, the bird stands among Craven’s most beloved subjects, having first entered her practice during the 1990s. Inspired by colour-plates found in vintage ornithology books belonging to her Italian grandmother, her winged subjects function like actors in an opera or play, each serving as a conduit for human situations and emotions. They are talismans for memory, recurring serially throughout Craven’s oeuvre as if having momentarily landed from another world. Here, veiled in surreal colours like a moment in a dream, the bird turns its head to space beyond the canvas, one eye fixed upon the viewer’s own gaze.

Based between New York City and her home in Cushing, Maine, Craven completed her MFA at Columbia University in 1993. Represented in major collections including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, she has mounted solo exhibitions at institutions including Le Confort Moderne, Poitiers (2014) and the Centre for Maine Contemporary Art (2019), as well as featuring in this year’s New England Triennial. Working from an extensive archive of photographs, magazine scans, film stills and internet screenshots, she plays both with Pop Art’s aesthetics of reproduction and with the mechanics of recollection, creating works shrouded in nostalgia and déjà-vu. Each inscribed with the date and time of making like diary entries, her paintings spring from ‘the moment just past’; her avian characters are captured in a state of afterthought, contemplating events unseen (A. Craven, quoted at In Stepping Out With Cherries, the quotidian is rendered strange and alluring, life’s cyclical passage suspended in an enchanted spell.

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