Artists Cobern, Rizzi, and Friedberg Reach Success at Kaminski Auctions
With over six hundred lots, Kaminski's September 20th Century Modern Auction saw the successful sale of a wide variety of fine art, sculpture and furnishings.
The top lot of the day was an abstract painting by the American artist Ralph Coburn, which fetched $9,000 against an original estimate of $1,500 to $2,500. The painting captures well Cobern's characteristic use of simple colors and dynamic geometric compositions. Coburn himself is an important figure in the development of Modern art in Boston. Trained at MIT and at the Museum School at the MFA, Cobern has been featured in exhibits at both the Cape Ann Art Museum and the Museum of Fine Arts Boston.
Paintings from contemporary New England artist Scott Prior and American Pop artist James Rizzi also performed well. Sold as lot 8100, Prior's hyper-realistic scene of a New England landscape behind a house, entitled "Backyard Barbeque," sold well above its high estimate for $4,600. James Rizzi's colorful work, "One Man's Floor is Another Man's Ceiling" also attracted many absentee and phone bidders, and represents the kind of work for which Rizzi is most famous. The multi-layered print of anthropomorphic city buildings was hammered down at $2,300 and sold to an online bidder.
A Freideberg cat clock also attracted many bidders' interest. In Pedro Friedeberg's work, one sees the sensibilities of a surrealist artist translated into furniture and decorative items. The cat clock features an feline torso supported by two hominid feet. The torso, in turn, backs a clock face with each hour designated by a hand displaying the appropriate number of fingers. In this way, the cat clock captures the same absurd and playful combination of body parts seen in Friedeberg's most famous piece, "Hand Foot Chair." Originally estimated at $3,000 to $5,000, the clock sold for $4,250.