Photography - Many top lots, high quality

This year's s pring auction presents an internationally and thematically wide ranging, high carat spectrum of 19th and 20th century photography.

Photography │ 31 May 2019

This year's s pring auction presents an internationally and thematically wide ranging, high carat spectrum of 19th and 20th century photography. The auction starts with a highlight from the early day s of photography, a daguerreotype from 1845 showing the six founding fathers of the " Physikalischen Gesellschaft zu Berlin" shortly after the association was founded a particular rarity. The fact that all the figures depicted are famous physicists and th at the origins of the recording are precisely documented on an accompanying autograph, makes this unique photograph scientifically important. The photograph was taken by the physicist and miner a logist Gustav Karsten (1820 1900) who, thanks to the long expo sure time, was able to immortalise himself with his colleagues in the picture (lot 1, € 6/8,000). Also worth mentioning is a selection of outstanding album e n prints by Wilhelm von Gloeden, Guglielmo Plüschow and Vincenzo Galdi. In exceptionally good condit ion, the portraits and open air studies of young men, partly in antique style nakedness, partly in contemporary costume, were taken before or around 1900 and are mostly from an Italian private collection (lots 6 17, € 1000 1,200).

For the fourth successiv e time, Lempertz is offering a selection of outstanding fine prints by Heinrich Kühn , the master of pictorial photography. The large format gum dichromate print "In Bacino di San Marco, Venezia", taken in around 1898, is one of the highlights of the auctio n with its atmospheric conception, reminsiscent of 19th century veduta paintings (lot 18, € 20/30,000). The portrait of his photographic colleague Edward Steichen, presented here as a platinum print on Japan paper, is impressive evidence of Kühn's skill in dealing with extreme tonal values (lot 23, € 20/ A portfolio by Willy Zielke gathers a selection of twelve still lifes from the years 1929 35.

Characteristic for Zielke's particular photographic style are the carefully arranged compositions of t he photographs and the close up perspective characteristic of New Objectivity photography. Elaborately designed by Klaus Wittkugel, only a few copies of the portfolio were made and has never before been offered at auction (lot 59, € 6/8,000). Also offered is a rare " b rûlages" by Raoul Ubac (lot 75, € 8/10,000). This is a surrealistic alienation process developed by Ubac in which the previously exposed glass negative is exposed to great heat setting a process of deformation in motion. Ubac used this process for only a few years making the b rûlage offered here a rarity.

Robert Maplethorpe's "Snakeman" belongs to those portraits in which the photographer depicts his models with antique attributes. The unidentified young man wears a black satyr mask reminiscent of fetish objects, whilst the snake winding around his shoulders, a phallic symbol, shows him as a seducer as well as the seduced (lot 156, € 8/12,000). The colour photographs of Saul Leiter have so far been rarely offered in German speaking auctions. The chromogenic print with the title "Snow" shows a view through a misty window onto a snowy street with dark, shadowy silhoue ttes of passers by (lot 147, € 5/7,000). The shot "Antartica" is from Sebastião Salgado's famous "Genesis" series, depicting a mountain range stretching to the horizon and populated by an army of penguins (lot 182, € 8,000).

Auction 1133 │ Contemporary Ar t + Photography │ 1 June 2019

One highlight from the "Contemporary Art" is a large format work by Marina Abramović , a film still from the video installation "Balk a n Erotic Epic" showing the artist herself posing as the god dess of fertility as seen in trad itional Balkan folk culture (lot 625, € 25/30,000). A further work of interest is the black and white photograph "Tatooed Fuck" by Nobuyoshi Araki , a coveted motif from his "Tokyo Comedy" series (lot 647, € 20/ Further highlights of the auction co Further highlights of the auction come from the photographers of the "Düsseldorf School", including me from the photographers of the "Düsseldorf School", including Axel Hütte with a poetic shot of an Iwith a poetic shot of an Icecelandic waterfall as a largelandic waterfall as a large--format format chromogenic chromogenic print (lot 903, € print (lot 903, € 15/20,000). 15/20,000). Thomas Ruff is present with a screenprint from his series "Anderes Portrait"is present with a screenprint from his series "Anderes Portrait" (lot 850, € (lot 850, € 9,000), and 9,000), and Elger Esser with one of his characteristic bright, oldwith one of his characteristic bright, old--masterly river landscapes (lot 905, € masterly river landscapes (lot 905, € 8/12,000). 8/12,000).

Auction 1133 Photography 31 May 2019, 2 pm

Auction 1135 Contemporary Art and Photography 1 June, 2 pm

Preview Cologne 25 - 30 May