Christie’s to donate late Gerald Fineberg’s $270 million art collection

The late Gerald Fineberg’s art collection will be offered for an estimated US$270 million in a series of sales at Christie’s starting in May.

Fineberg, known as Jerry to his friends, was the founder of the eponymous Boston-based real estate company and a patron of the arts. He began collecting in the 1980s, inspired by his encounter with Jean-Michel Basquiat at a gallery opening in New York and his visits to Andy Warhol’s factory in the months leading up to the death of the artist. artist, according to Christie’s.

Beginning with a painting by Man Ray of Kiki de Montparnasse, a French model and actress, in 1923, “the collection spans 100 years of art, exploring the most important art historical movements of the 20th century,” says Sara Friedlander, Vice President of Christie’s. of 20th and 21st century art.

The collection also includes works by artists of color, women artists and previously underappreciated designers such as Barkley Hendricks, Beauford Delaney, Ruth Asawa, Alma Thomas and Alice Neel, she said.

“He was a collector who was really into figuration at a time when people weren’t buying that kind of work,” she says, referring to depictions of people and the real world. “He also loved abstraction and he was interested in looking at artists that no one else was looking at.”

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Fineberg died in December at the age of 88. During his lifetime, he was deeply devoted to art institutions in Massachusetts, serving on the boards of the Rose Art Museum and the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston.

The majority of the works in the Fineberg collection will be offered in May in New York in two-part sales. A rich selection of photographs will be offered in the fall, while some works will be sold at Christie’s in London.

Highlights include Bathersa 1967 figurative masterpiece by Gerhard Richter, and Christopher Wool of Untitled, one of only two paintings with multicolored texts by the artist. These paintings are expected to sell for $15-20 million each.

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Another highlight is a portrait of Pablo Picasso, Bust of a laureate manfrom 1969, estimated to sell for US$9–12 million.

Among Friedlander’s personal favorites is The DeVegh Twinsa 1975 painting by Neel, who was best known for her portraits using line and color to convey the psychological and emotional state of the sitter.

“The portrait, hanging in Jerry’s bedroom, again represents that really interesting historical moment when the artist explored figuration when all of his contemporaries were interested in abstraction,” says Friedlander.

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The painting has a presale estimate between $1.2 million and $1.8 million.

Another portrait of Neel, Betty Homitzky pregnantfrom 1968, will be offered in the region of US$1.5-2 million.

Highlights of the collection will be worldwide traveling exhibitions, starting in London Thursday-Monday, then traveling to Hong Kong April 3-6 before returning to the United States for exhibitions in San Francisco April 12-15, in Palm Beach starting in April. from April 14 to 19 and in Los Angeles from April 17 to 20.

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