Press Office Event


Modern Art Council Presents Biennial Fund-Raiser in April

Released: January 26, 2011 ·

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will hold its biennial Art Auction at the museum on April 6, 2011. This highly anticipated fund-raising event organized by the Modern Art Council (MAC) will feature more than 70 lots representing an exceptional range of work by celebrated artists with strong ties to the museum. Auction items will include photographs, paintings, and works on paper donated by local and national galleries and artists. Proceeds from Art Auction 2011 will benefit SFMOMA’s world-class collection and educational programs.

The event will include both live and silent auctions during the course of the night. The live auction will feature some 20 works by such important artists as John Baldesarri, Mel Bochner, Mark Bradford, Vija Celmins, Chuck Close, Olafur Eliasson, Mark Grotjahn, Marilyn Minter, Dave Muller, and Richard Serra, just to name a few. This year’s auction will highlight works by artists who have had long-standing relationships with SFMOMA—artists who have contributed significantly to the history and stature of the museum.

The silent auction will feature some 50 works by artists who have been featured in SFMOMA’s New Work and SECA programs as well as artists included in the museum’s renowned photography collection, such as Tauba Auerbach, Leslie Shows, and R. H. Quaytman.

“The art auction is a moment to bring together key elements—artists, supporters, and outstanding art—that are so integral to the daily life of SFMOMA. With the dynamic combination this year of established and up-and-coming artists, the evening promises to offer new and exciting works of interest to collectors at all levels. We have very high expectations for Art Auction 2011,” says Art Auction Co-chair Annie Robinson Woods.

One highlight of the live auction will be Richard Serra’s drawing Track’s #30 (2007), which is estimated at $200,000. A native of San Francisco, Serra grew up visiting the Marine shipyards where his father worked as a pipe fitter. Although mostly known for his sculptures, Serra’s drawings have been crucial to his work for more than 40 years. The exhibition Richard Serra Drawing: A Retrospective will be on view at SFMOMA in fall 2011.

Another highlight is the work Starfield (2010) by Vija Celmins, estimated at $20,000 to $25,000. Throughout her career, Celmins has painted or drawn a selective repertoire of images: airplanes, the night sky, oceans, deserts, spider webs, and the surface of the moon. In these works she laboriously translates photographic details into paintings, drawings, and prints. Currently, SFMOMA has seven works by Celmins in the collection.

Untitled (2010), from the series Kinetics, by artist Ranjani Shettar is on the block estimated at $25,000. Shettar, based in Bangalore, India, has already received much international exposure, participating in biennials in Lyon, France; Sharjah, the United Arab Emirates; and Sydney, Australia—as well as at the Carnegie International. Exhibitions devoted to Shettar’s work have been presented by the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) in Boston and by the Museum of Modern Art of Fort Worth. SFMOMA showcased the exhibition New Work: Ranjani Shettar in 2009, which was the artists’ first exhibition on the West Coast. Her work Me, no, not me, buy me, eat me, wear me, have me, me, no, not me, (2006–07) was featured in the inaugural exhibition in SFMOMA’s Rooftop Garden, which opened in May 2009.

Mel Bochner’s oil on velvet painting Ha, Ha, Ha (2010), estimated at $20,000 to $30,000, is sure to be a crowd favorite, as is a pencil-on-paper drawing by British artist Ewan Gibbs titled San Francisco (2010), estimated at $10,000. Gibbs’ pencil drawings are entirely composed of knitting pattern symbols—miniscule slashes or circles—on paper marked with a faint grid. Working from a photograph, Gibbs translates the image into delicate, discrete pencil strokes. The result is an image that is almost recognizable from a distance, yet significantly more abstract—almost invisible—at close range. A baseball fan at heart, the subject of this work is AT&T Park, in honor of the Giants’ 2010 World Series win. SFMOMA commissioned 18 works by Gibbs for an exhibition titled Ewan Gibbs: San Francisco in honor of the museum’s seventy-fifth anniversary.

Art Auction 2011 will begin at 5 p.m. for Benefactor and Patron-level supporters, featuring hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, and early access to the silent auction items. At 6 p.m., general ticket holders will be welcomed for cocktails, tantalizing passed hors d’oeuvres, and gourmet food stations by McCall Associates. The live auction will commence at 7 p.m.

Art Auction 2011 is organized by the Modern Art Council, SFMOMA’s lead fund-raising auxiliary since 1934. In-kind sponsorship of Art Auction 2011 is provided by Bonhams and Butterfields, Napa Valley Vintners, the Painter’s Place Picture Framers, and Ship Art International.

Tickets for Art Auction 2011 are $1,000 Benefactor, $700 Patron, and $350 general, with a limited number of tables for six available at $7,500. For tickets or more information, please call 415.618.3263 or visit sfmoma.org/artauction.




John Baldessari   

Hand and/or Feet: Chair and Book / Plate and Egg, 2010       

12 and 7 color run lithographs on razor cut Sommerset paper (two panels)           

Edition size: 48, artist proofs: 10     

Estimate: $4,500


Mel Bochner        

Ha, Ha, Ha, 2010

Oil on velvet; 29 1/2 x 24 3/4 in.                                     

Estimate: $20,000–$25,000


Vija Celmins        

Starfield, 2010    

Mezzotint, edition of 30; 26 x 35 in.

Estimate: $20,000-$25,000


Chuck Close        

Roy II, 1996                              

Digital Ink Jett on Somerset Paper; 38 1/2 x 31 1/2 in.               

Estimate: $5,000-$10,000


Olafur Eliasson   

Thirteen red to green negative movie, 2010 

Watercolor and pencil on paper; 2 1/4 x 16 1/8 in.

Estimate: $12,500         


Teresita Fernandez             

Nocturnal (Horizontal), 2009          

Solid graphite and pencil on wooden panel; 12 x 72 x 3 in.       

Estimate: $35,000-$45,000


Ewan Gibbs       

San Francisco, 2010        

Pencil on paper; 11 5/8 x 8 1/4 in.                            

Estimate: $10,000-$15,000


Marilyn Minter

Nail Biter, 2009                  

Chromogenix Print, ed. of 15; 24 1/4 x 20 1/4 in.                                

Estimate: $9,000


Richard Serra      

Tracks #30, 2007

Paintstick on handmade paper; 40 x 40 in.    

Estimate: $175,000-$225,000


Ranjani Shettar

Untitled (from the series Kinetics), 2010

Unique; 3 x 3 x 45 1/4 in.

Estimate: $25,000


Dave Muller         

Sprig Forward, 2010

Acrylic on paper; 11 x 8 1/2 in.

Estimate: $8,000 


SFMOMA Art Auction 2011 Special Events


Art Auction 2011 Collectors’ Preview Party

February 2, 2011; 6–8 p.m.

A special cocktail reception and opportunity to view the private collection of Stuart and Gina Peterson at ARTIS Capital Management and preview artworks included in the SFMOMA Art Auction. Open to Art Auction 2011 Benefactors and Patrons.


The Launch Party

March 9, 2011; 6–8 p.m.

Enjoy a cocktail reception at Wilkes Bashford while shopping for the bidding-appropriate Art Auction 2011 outfit. A portion of the sales that night will benefit the museum. Open to all Art Auction 2011 ticket holders.


VIP Preview Reception

April 6, 2011; 5–6 p.m.

Exclusive opportunity for Benefactors, Patrons, and Auction VIPs to preview the art and consult with experts prior to general admission.


Stonescape Private Art Tour

August 27, 2011; time TBD

Art Auction 2011 Benefactors will get to tour this premiere art collection and winery with SFMOMA Trustees Norah and Norman Stone located in the Napa Valley.


SFMOMA Art Auction 2011 Committee

Event Co-Chairs: Annie Robinson Woods and Ariane Maclean Trimuschat

MAC President: Jill G. Barnett

Committee Chairs: Alka Agrawal, Joni Binder-Shwarts, Marilyn Hayes, Nathalie Delrue-McGuire, Cecilie Starin, and Victoria Yeager Sawyer

Jill Lynch 415.357.4172 jilynch@sfmoma.org
Clara Hatcher Baruth 415.357.4177 chatcher@sfmoma.org
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