‘Irrsinin’ triggers auction fever

Auction 1223 - Evening Sale Modern and Contemporary Art on 6 June 2023

A captivating work by Albert Birkle from 1925 was the star of the exceptionally successful Evening Sale on 6 June 2023 at Kunsthaus Lempertz. With Old-Masterly precision, the 63.5cm x 57.5 cm canvas ‘Irrsinn’ (lot 29) gives a very special example of a memento mori in which a man with eyes widened in horror is clasped from behind by a greenish shimmering skeleton. Along with ‘Der Letzte Kavalier’, now in the Salzburg Museum, the painter created a modern interpretation of a dance of death. After the starting call of 36,000 euro, a gripping bidding fight broke out which was finally won by a Rhenish collector against competitors from Germany and abroad. The result of 900,000 euro marks a new auction record for a work by Albert Birkle.

The bids for ‘Eidechse’ (lot 42) by Heinrich Campendonk also developed spectacularly. The reverse glass painting was formerly in the collection of Stefan Waetzold, the later Director General of the State Museums (Prussian Cultural Heritage) and subsequently in the famous Galerie Rosen, which revived the art trade in West Berlin after the war. Instead of the estimated 40,000 euro, the work achieved a result of 352,800 euro.

Strong interest also ensured some six-figure results for a series of works of maritime motifs on paper by Lyonel Feininger. The works are from the collection of the Düsseldorf architect Walter Brune. ‘Zwei Frauen’ (lot 31), a pastel and charcoal on paper by Ernst Ludwig Kirchnerfetched 504,000, as did ‘Zinnien’ (lot 24) by Lovis Corinth. The 170 x 170 cm canvas ‘Linien Nr. 235’ (Lot 19) by Zdeněk Sýkora also rose above the half-million mark with a result of 541,800 euro.

The auction of ‘Selbstbildnis, liegend’ by Hermann Max Pechstein from 1909 - a key work of his career and Expressionism – has been postponed until the Autumn. In preparation for the catalogue, extensive research was conducted in all directions by Kunsthaus Lempertz. Museums and collectors were interested in this important work. On the day of the planned auction, however, it was entered into the Lost Art database without consultation and apparently without further research. A fair and amicable solution has already been found with the heirs. In order once again to reasonably communicate the integrity of ‘Selbstbildnis, Liegend’, the auction has been postponed.

Auction Dates

Auction 1223 - Evening Sale - Contemporary Art

Photography Post War & Contemporary Art Modern Art
Tuesday 06. 06. 2023, 06:00 pm
Lot 1 - 97
Auction 1223
Auction
Cologne
Tuesday, June 6
6 pm: Lot 1 – 97
Preview
Cologne
Thursday/Friday, 1/2 June, 10 am - 5.30 pm
Saturday, June 3, 10 am - 4 pm
Sunday, June 4, 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Monday, June 5, 10 a.m. - 5.30 p.m.
Vernissage
Wednesday, May 31, 6 pm

Berlin, Poststr. 22 (a selection)
Tuesday, May 23, 10 am - 9 pm
Wednesday, 24 May 10 am - 5 pm
Vernissage
Tuesday, May 23, 6 pm
Catalogue
PDF-Catalogue

Auction 1223 - Evening Sale - Modern Art

Photography Post War & Contemporary Art Modern Art
Tuesday 06. 06. 2023, 06:00 pm
Lot 1 - 97
Auction 1223
Auction
Cologne
Tuesday, June 6
6 pm: Lot 1 – 97
Preview
Cologne
Thursday/Friday, 1/2 June, 10 am - 5.30 pm
Saturday, June 3, 10 am - 4 pm
Sunday, June 4, 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Monday, June 5, 10 a.m. - 5.30 p.m.
Vernissage
Wednesday, May 31, 6 pm

Berlin, Poststr. 22 (a selection)
Tuesday, May 23, 10 am - 9 pm
Wednesday, 24 May 10 am - 5 pm
Vernissage
Tuesday, May 23, 6 pm
Catalogue
PDF-Catalogue

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at 0221/92 57 29–30.

Contact

Jan Bykowski
Press and public relations
info@lempertz.com