John Chamberlain, "Le First". Estimate: 1 600 000 – 1 800 000 SEK
John Chamberlain is widely known as the artist who transferred the style of abstract expressionism from the two dimensional painting to three dimensional sculptural objects. His key words while creating was ”fit” and ”choice” – two parameters which, together with Chamberlain’s fingerspitzengefühl, was important to the process in which metal car parts became pioneering works of art.
It was towards the end of the 1950’s when Chamberlain started working with sheet metal and car parts, materials that were both plentiful and inexpensive in the US during the 1950’s and 60’s. In 1960, Chamberlain had his first proper exhibition at the legendary Martha Jackson Gallery. Although he barely sold anything, he won critical acclaim and the following year Chamberlain was included in the exhibition The Art of Assemblage at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Chamberlain’s feeling for detail, the composition (choice) and the combination (fit) of selected sheet metal and car parts gave way to sculptures combining movement and strength, raw edges and glossy surfaces. They are intuitive and expressionistic objects that, despite their weight, possess a high degree of elegance.
During the 1980’s, when ”Le First” was created, Chamberlain mainly worked with upward and vertical lines, which can also be seen in this sculpture. Here, the artist has succeeded in transforming the essence of abstract painting into soft folds and round shapes.
John Chamberlain is today regarded as one of the most important post-war artists. He revolutionised sculpture as a genre and his significance for artists of the younger generation can hardly be overstated. Chamberlain’s art provokes and inspires, even to this day!
John Chamberlain, "Le First".
Estimate: 1 600 000 – 1 800 000 SEK
Contemporary Art & Design
Viewing: 7–11 November at Berzelii Park in Stockholm, Sweden
Auction: 12 November at Arsenalsgatan 2 i Stockholm, Sweden