For every art student, enthusiast and collector alike, Williem de Kooning is a name that widely represents fine-art prestige. With domestic and international painting exhibitions from 1948 to 2012, this European artist created a legacy during his 92-year life span. And while you can easily find de Kooning’s public collections in countless museums from the U.S.A to Germany, it takes a (really) pretty-penny to purchase one of his works. At 1stDibs.com, a website called “the world’s leading online marketplace for the most beautiful things on earth,” one de Kooning painting is priced at just under one million dollars.
Going for exactly $885,000, with global shipping available, 1stDibs.com says de Kooning’s Untitled Circa 1978 is in “excellent” condition. The site also remarks that the piece’s style is to be considered “contemporary”, with a medium of oil paint on paper. Interestingly enough, the piece was originally purchased from the artist “by his dentist,” — probably at a huge fraction of its current cost — who owned it until 2008. Bearing de Kooning’s signature at the lower right, Untitled 1978 is a mass of shapes, lines, and brushworks in a rather soft color-palette. At first glance of the abstract work, there seems to be at least one or two bodies present: one appearing to be female. The balance de Kooning created (via the shapes appearing at top right and bottom left corners, as well as the play of negative space scattered throughout the composition) make for a painting that seems simple yet engaging in structure.
Being born in the Netherlands, the Willem de Kooning Foundation’s official website says the young man moved to America by ship in 1926 and soon established himself as a commercial artist. Also known for hanging with a high-status crowd, de Kooning was in close quarters with artists like “Stuart Davis and Arshile Gorky”: not to mention other creative celebrities like Mark Rothko and the ever famous Jackson Pollok. As a part of their creative identity, this group, “became notorious for rejecting the accepted stylistic norms… using paint to create emotive, abstract gestures,” the website remarks. By being rebellious by nature, de Kooning and friends forever changed the landscape of American art.
And as for our nearly one-million-dollar Untitled Circa 1978 piece, 1stDibs affirms its price-point by saying, “Untitled (Circa 1978) embodies the unrestrained, visceral execution of de Kooning’s greatest works.” And, “By 1936 de Kooning’s work was hanging in the Museum of Modern Art in New York and he soon joined… as a leader of America’s first great modern art movement: Abstract Expressionism.”
Think this piece of American art history is worth nearly one million dollars? Click here to make an offer or purchase the piece!