May 24, 2017 - 18:36 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - At Sotheby’s New York, all-American favorite Norman Rockwell commanded the top price of American Art week for the second season running. Painted at the height of his career and exemplifying his ability to depict everyday life with a dose of humor, Two Plumbers was eagerly pursued by two telephone bidders, who battled for over seven minutes before the work sold for $14,975,000. The work has remained in the same private collection since its purchase at Sotheby’s in May 1996 for $882,500 – a world auction record at the time, though surpassed just three lots later in the same sale by Rockwell’s The Watchmaker, sold for $937,500, Art Daily said.
In addition to Rockwell, works by 20th Century American icons such as Thomas Hart Benton, Maxfield Parrish, Georgia O’Keeffe, Marsden Hartley and Rockwell Kent helped raise the annual spring sale of American Art to a $33.1 million total.
Liz Sterling, Head of Sotheby’s American Art Department, commented: “We are thrilled with the price achieved by Two Plumbers, which now ranks amongst the top four auction prices for Norman Rockwell. In addition to strong results for some of the most recognizable names in the world of American Art, we were delighted to see Grace Hartigan, Carroll Cloar and Stephen Greene achieve new auction records, as well as for a new record for a work on paper by Robert Riggs. This afternoon also saw the auction debut for George Howorth, whose portrait of Alexander Hamilton sold for nearly three times its high estimate.”
AMERICAN ART ONLINE Sotheby's first dedicated online-only sale of American Art is open for bidding now through tomorrow, 24 May, at 4pm. Featuring paintings from the 19th and 20th centuries, paintings by artists including Otis Kaye, Charles Demuth and Antonio Jacobsen are available at accessible price points.