Art collection of Arthur and Anita Kahn comes to Christies

Spo Brig

Spo Brig

2015-08-17 10:31:30

The renowned art collection of Arthur and Anita Kahn, including more than 80 works by Alexander Calder, is set to be offered by Christie's.

The remarkable collection, which filled the couple's home on Manhattan's Upper West Side, is expected to realize more than $50 million across sales in New York, London and Paris.

“We are thrilled to be honoring the legacy of Arthur and Anita Kahn with this exceptional preliminary preview of works from their collection of Modern, Post-War and Contemporary Art, they thoughtfully acquired over the course of several decades," said Paul Provost Deputy Chairman, Christie’s Americas.

"The Kahns were great patrons, champions and friends of artists such as Alexander Calder, David Smith, Richard Pousette-Dart, Ibram Lassaw and Dorothy Dehner. Their apartment in the Upper West Side of Manhattan was dedicated to the art they loved, the art that could not be hung was propped against the walls, and eventually took over the entire apartment."

The collection includes the most significant grouping of Calder works ever offered at auction, with more than 80 pieces set to cross the block. “I would often get up in the middle of the night to listen to the Calders move through the air, and watch the shadows they created," remembered the couple's daughter Karen Kahn. "It was an experience like none other, and such a privilege to be surrounded by such beauty."

Notable Calder works will include The Aeroplane-Tower with Six Leaves and a Dot, dating from 1951 and estimated at $1.8-$2.5 million,  and Vertical out of Horizontal, estimated at $2-$3 million.

“The appearance of such a sizable group of works by Alexander Calder on the market is a rare event," said Jonathan Laib, Senior Specialist, Post-War & Contemporary Art. "This collection of hanging mobiles, standing mobiles, stabiles, gouaches, drawings, and jewelry offers an exciting glimpse into Calder’s considerable genius, showing off his remarkable prowess in understanding the construction of weight and balance, light and shadow, elegance and harmony.

A selection of the works from the Kahn's collection will be on display at Christie's Rockefeller Center headquarters for two weeks, beginning August 14, before heading to auction in November.

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