A Look Inside The Private Art Collection Of Lehman Brothers

Want an ironic trophy of the financial crisis? Now’s your chance.

On November 1st, Philadelphia auction house Freeman’s is holding the first of two sales of nearly 700 pieces from Lehman Brothers’ private art collection.

See the for-sale Lehman art work here>

Much of the art work is modest, going for under $1,000. But there are some gems — A Roy Lichtenstein print, “I Love Liberty;” 10 Berenice Abbott photographs of New York City; and a set of nine Walker Evans photographs of the Brooklyn Bridge, all for modest prices.

A second sale February 12th will feature more “fine art, prints, paintings and drawings that will all be sold without reserve,” Anne Henry of Freeman’s tells us.

But don’t expect the art sale to assuage Lehman’s long line of investors looking for money in bankruptcy proceedings — Freeman’s estimates both Lehman auctions will raise between $780,000 to $1.18 million.

And don’t think you’ll find any of Dick Fuld’s personal art. As Fortune reports, the Fuld family’s private collection isn’t included as the Fulds sold a group of 16 artworks through Christie’s last November for around $13.5 million, below the $20 million the auction house guaranteed the couple.

Maybe some other big banks bailed out by their governments should take note and sell some of their massive collections. According to a report from Breaking Views, Deutsche Bank is believed to own the largest corporate collection in the world, with some 60,000 pieces of contemporary art. UBS owns 40,000 pieces, and JPMorgan Chase 30,000.

SEE WHAT TO BUY FROM THE LEHMAN BROTHERS ART COLLECTION>>>
Image: wallstcheatsheet.com

A modern sculpture

Estimate $20,000-30,000

BERNAR VENET (french, b. 1941)

'97.5° ARC X 14'

2003, stamped bottom right with the artist's initials and numbered 'BV 6/25' (there were also 5 artist's proofs), stamped with title verso; William Shearburn Gallery, St. Louis, MO and Jim Kempner Fine Art, New York, co-publishers. Rolled and welded steel with black patina

As visible in catalogue and online images, the sculpture is in very good overall condition. There are no apparent breaks, losses or repairs. There are some variations in surface hue and appearance, as is commmon with the medium and intended by the artist. Underneath the sculpture there are some localised areas with pale borwnish discoloration, and on top of the sculpture, there are some similarly coloured scattered pale brown spots--including a cluster of such spots on one of the curved sections. One of the sections has two small areas with apparent brownish rust and oxidation.

A Lichtenstein -- nice

Estimate $15,000-25,000

ROY LICHTENSTEIN (american, 1923-1997)

'I LOVE LIBERTY'

1982, signed and dated in pencil, numbered 37/250 (there were also 73 artist's proofs), with full margins; the Artist and People for the American Way, Washington, D.C, co-publishers. colour screenprint on Arches 88 wove paper.

Overall in very good to excellent condition. Condition issues described here are only visible when examined out of the frame in raking light: and are nearly all confined to margins or reverse.

A very faint 3/4-in. vertical rubbed line in the black at lower right , a minor 1-in. horizontal soft abrasion in the lower margin (a few inches to the left of signature); a few very slightly raised areas in the upper margin, lower margin and left margins that appear to be the result of moisture but with no attendant discoloration (areas range approx. 1/2-in to 2 1/2in. square areas) and are very difficult to see unless held under raking light; the palest moisture stain at the lower right sheet corner ( 1x1 in. approx) and another at the bottom sheet edge at left (approx .1/2 x 2 in.), a few short creases at the extreme upper left sheet edge (approx 2 x .1/4 in.); a few traces of surface soiling the margins, the palest time staining, old tape remains in places at the reverse of the sheet edges.

colourful

Estimate $10,000-15,000

RYAN MCGINNESS (american, b. 1971)

'BLACK HOLES' complete set of four prints

2006, all signed, dated and three numbered 33/33 in pencil, monoprint numbered 1/1 (there were also 6 artist's proofs), full sheets; World House Editions, Middlebury, Connecticut and Edition Copenhagen, co-publishers. colour lithographs and one unique colour monoprint with three .22 calibre bullet holes, with the hand-made linen-covered portfolio case with colophon/justification page.

All works in this suite in apparently excellent, original condition. Floated in light-wood frames, all edges visible.

Poetry?

Estimate $10,000-15,000

POURAN JINCHI (iranian, b. 1959)

'UNTITLED (POETRY #96-3)'

Signed and dated 'Jinchi 1996' in yellow lower left, mixed media on canvas

Tundra?

Estimate $10,000-15,000

FRIEDEL DZUBAS (german/american, 1915-1994)

'TUNDRA II'

Signed, titled, dated 'Dzubas / 'Tundra' II/62' verso upper left corner, oil on canvas

Smudge at bottom left, two small (under 1/2 in) depressions in canvas at lower left . White liquid stain noted at upper centre, but it is unclear if it is damage to the artwork or left intentially by artist.

Scenic, if smudgy

Estimate $10,000-15,000

BERNARD CATHELIN (french, 1919-2004)

'LA FERME DE LA PLAINE, MONTELEGER'

Signed and dated 'Cathelin 60' bottom right, titled and dated 'La ferme de la Plaine MONTELEGER' verso dated 'Septembre 60,' oil on canvas

Unrestored original condition, not lined, under uv light some varinish inconsistencies visible. At lower centre right, a localised area where some of paint is 'lifting' from the painted ground- it has not flaked off, nor does it appear to be unstable in this area.

Blue and white

Estimate $10,000-15,000

ARTURO HERRERA (venezuelan, b. 1959)

'MINE'

2007, signed with initials and dated 'AH 07' in pencil, numbered 5/23 (there were also 5 artist's proofs), the full sheet; Dieu Donné, New York, publisher. Pigmented abaca watermark on pigmented cotton base sheet with hand-cut collaged pulp-painting.

'Mine' was published in 2007 by Dieu Donné, a non-profit artist workspace located in New York City.
The abstract shapes of the present work echo the artist's unique felt work wall paintings in which cut-out fabric shapes pinned to the wall hang like the tangled forms of a Jackson Pollock painting. These immense, colourful, and often high contrast works in paper blend a wide range of techniques, fusing collage, watercolor, cut-paper, drawing, and more. Arturo Herrera has had solo exhibitions at Centre d'Art Contemporain, Geneva; Dia centre for the Arts, New York; Centro Galego de Arte Contemporánea, Santiago de Compostela; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; and P.S. 1 Contemporary Art centre, New York, among others. His work appeared in the Whitney Biennial (2002)

In excellent, original condition. All edges visible, floated in whitewashed wood frame.

Green and white

Estimate $8,000-12,000

HERBERT BRANDL (austrian, b. 1959)

'OHNE TITEL'

Signed and dated verso 'BRANDL 2007' in pencil, oil on canvas.

Winter scene

Estimate $8,000-12,000

GEORGES MANZANA PISSARRO (french, 1871-1961)

'POULE BLANCHES'

Signed 'G. Manzana' bottom left, also with Parisian preparer's stencil verso, oil on canvas

Poker chips?

Estimate $7,000-10,000

LOUISE BOURGEOIS (french/american, b. 1911)

'THE SONG OF THE BLACKS AND THE BLUES'

1989-1996, signed in crayon, numbered 'PP I' (printer's proof, the edition was 40 plus 17 artist's proofs), the full sheet; SOLO Impression, Inc., New York and Parasol Press, Ltd., New York, co-publishers. colour woodcut and lithograph with handcoloring on Rives BFK Roll paper.

Simple flowers

Estimate $7,000-10,000

DAVID HOCKNEY (british, b. 1937)

'GODETIA'

1973, signed and dated in pencil, numbered 2/100 (there were also 23 artist's proofs), with full margins; Petersburg Press, New York and London publisher. colour etching and aquatint on Arches mould-made paper.

A few extremely soft handling creases visible only when inspected out of the frame under raking light: one just to the left of the purple and red flowers at left, one in the white within the plate at lower right, two at right near the centre right plate edge, two in the margins at lower left, two smaller ones at lower right. Overall in very good condition. Floated against white mat in whitewashed wood frame.

Another French river scene

Estimate $7,000-10,000

GEORGES MANZANA PISSARRO (french, 1871-1961)

'QUAI HENRI VI PARIS- SOLEIL COUCHANT'

Signed and dated 'manzana 33' bottom right, oil on board

Fine original condition, no evidence of restoration.

Hanover Square

Estimate $6,000-8,000

LOUIS LOZOWICK (russian/american, 1892-1973)

'HANOVER SQUARE'

1929, signed, dated and numbered 14/25 in pencil, with wide margins. Lithograph on wove paper, watermark 'FRANCE.'

Pale mat staining, minor surface soiling in the margins, two soft creases at the uppr right margin, glue stains at the extreme upper right sheet edge (horizontal, approx. .1/4 x 2in. Along sheet edge), the right sheet edge slightly unevenly trimmed, otherwise in very good condition, framed

New York In The 30's

Estimate $6,000-10,000

BERENICE ABBOTT (american, 1898-1991)

'NEW YORK IN THE 30'S' 10 prints

1979, all signed in pencil bottom right, nine numbered 20/60 and one numbered 9/60 on the support (there were also 5 artist's proofs for all lettered A-D); Parasol Press, Ltd. Portland, Oregon publisher. Gelatin silver prints mounted on wove board (lacking two prints). (10). 'Exchange Place,' 'The Flat Iron Building;' 'Hoboken Ferry;' 'Lyric Theatre;' 'Hardware Store;' 'Fifth Avenue and Eighth Street;' 'Butcher Shop;' 'Yuban Warehouse;' 'El at Battery;' and 'Pine and Henry Street'

Two examined out of the frames: Lackwana Railroad/Ferry image: Photo: 10 1/2 x 13 1/2 in. Board: 16 x 20 in. In excellent original condition. Japanese tabs at corners with linen corners over it, in acid free overmats in dark metal frames. Flatiron Building: Image: 13 1/2 X 10 1/2 in. (Board: 20 x 16 in.) Also excellent condition, framed in same way, others from this lot are presumably in same condition as were purchased at once and immediately framed.

Now, some real bargains

Estimate $500-800

* DAVIS (american, 20th c.)

'STOCK MARKET'

1959, signed, dated, and titled in pencil, numbered 'AP', with wide margins. colour lithograph with gold leaf on Japan paper.

Sheet size: 36 5/8 x 61 in. Pale light-staining (more evident in the lower left area of the mat opening), soft creasing along the bottom left sheet edge, otherwise in very good condition. Overmatted, in wood frame.

Pretty standard

Estimate $1,200-1,800

YVONNE JACQUETTE (american, b. 1934)

'MIDTOWN COMPOSITE'

1997, signed and dated in white pencil, numbered 50/50 (there were also 7 artist's proofs), the full sheet; Mary Ryan Gallery, New York, publisher. Woodcut on Okawara paper.

Scenic tug-boat frame

Estimate $4,000-6,000

GEORGES SCHREIBER (american, 1904-1977)

'BROOKLYN BRIDGE'

Signed and dated 'Schreiber 45' upper right, oil on canvas

Very good overall condition apart from minor scattered retouching, including a few spots in the sky and at part of bridge at far right. Painting does appear to be lined (we have not removed the protective plastic covering used to back the painting). The painting is NOT laid down to this plastic protective backing.

Men not building derivatives

Estimate $1,200-1,800

JAMES E. ALLEN (american 1894-1964)

'STANDING PIPE'

1937, signed in pencil, from the edition of 20, with wide margins. Lithograph on wove paper.

Matted, framed, with each corner of sheet set into plastic canted tabs. The (apparently) full sheet, with margins on all sides. Image itself in very good condition; a clean impression. SHeet has pale mount staining. Two very minor (apparently removable) tape piece fragments at top edge of sheet, recto. In parts of some margins, apparent stray printer's ink (specks).

New York industrial scene

Estimate $400-600

MAX ARTHUR COHN (american, 1903-1998)

'COAL TOWER, EAST RIVER'

Signed 'MAX ARTHUR COHN' bottom left in ink, watercolor on paper. Executed in 1932.

Excellent original condition. Old brown hinge remains verso margin corners.

Bland city

Estimate $400-600

MAX ARTHUR COHN (american, 1903-1998)

'STUYVESANT PARK'

Signed bottom right 'MAX ARTHUR COHN', watercolor on paper. Executed in 1937.

Excellent original condition. Old brown hinge remains verso margin corners.

Ink spill

Estimate $600-800

CLAES OLDENBURG (american, b. 1929)

'THROWING INK BOTTLE WITH FLY AND DROPPED QUILL'

1991, signed in pencil, numbered 45/75 (there were also 18 artist's proofs), with full margins; the artist and Gemini G.E.L., Los Angeles, co-publishers, and with both of their blindstamps. colour lithograph on Arches.

Money quilt?

Estimate $400-600

ALFRED JENSEN (american, 1903-1981)

'PORTFOLIO I-IV' - two prints

1973, both signed and dated in pencil, numbered 137/150 and 148/150 respectively (there were also 20 artist's proofs for each), with wide margins; Pace Editions, New York, publisher. colour screenprints on Arches.

Snail map

Estimate $400-600

AGNES DENES (hungarian/american, b. 1938)

'MAP PROJECTION: THE SNAIL '

1976, signed, titled and dated in pencil, numbered 34/50 (there were also 20 artist's proofs), with margins; Pace Editions, New York, publisher. colour lithograph on BFK Rives.

On wove paper watermark MBM France; Sheet size: 29 x 36 in. Extremely pale time staining, otherwise in excellent original condition. Overmatted, in whitewashed wood frame/plexi.

A nest

Estimate $400-600

NEIL WELLIVER (american, 1929-2005)

'OSPREY'S NEST'

'1979-80, signed in pencil, numbered 11/80 (there were also 15 artist's proofs), with wide margins; Brooke Alexander Editions, New York, publisher. colour woodcut on Kizuki Sarashi Hanga paper.

Sheet size: 34 3/4 x 36 1/2 in. Very minor rippling throughout, overall in excellent original condition. Overmatted, in reddish/brown wood frame/plexiglas.

In the woods

Estimate $400-600

NEIL WELLIVER (american, 1929-2005)

'DUCK TRAP'

1973, signed 'Welliver' in pencil, numbered 100/144, with wide margins, from a suite of 6 images. H.K.L. Ltd., publisher. colour screenprint on Buckeye 80lb Cover.

Sheet size: 40 x 40 in.A thin very faint line of apparent graphite pencil along the centre of all four margins (presumably rubbed off from overmat during framing), the palest mat staining, very soft occasional handling creases, otherwise in excellent original condition. Overmatted, in reddish/brown wood frame/plexi.

The Big Tuna

Estimate $1,000-1,500

WILLIAM ALLAN (american, b. 1936)

'ALBACORE'

Signed bottom right 'William Allan' in graphite, watercolor on Arches paper. Executed in 1973

One tiny foxmark four inches from the fish's mouth and another at upper right, with a .1/4-in. wide strip of brown tape neatly adhered along all sheet edges, otherwise in excellent original condition. Sheet size: 24 1/4 x 38 3/4 in. Overmatted, in white-washed wood frame.

Peanuts

Estimate $600-1,000

DON NICE (american, b. 1932)

'PEANUTS'

Signed bottom right 'nice', titled 'peanuts' bottom left, dated '75' in pencil bottom centre, watercolor on wove paper.

Sheet size: 21 x 38 1/2 in. On Arches, with the palest time staining, a few traces of minute skinning at the extreme sheet edges, otherwise in excellent original condition. Overmatted, framed in whitewashed wood frame.

Modern city scene

Estimate $800-1,200

DANIEL MORPER (american, b. 1937)

'COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE WEST'

Gouache on paper. Executed in 1977.

On artist's board, Signed, titled and dated verso in black ink, 'Receiving Communications From the West Daniel Morper 1997', minor skinning in the margins (presumably a result of artist's process), overall in excellent original condition, overmatted, in black wood frame/plexi.

January In The Snow

Estimate $800-1,200

ADELE ALSOP (american, b. 1948)

'JANUARY IN THE SNOW'

Signed 'A ALSOP' bottom left, oil on canvas - Executed in 1984.

In very good original condition, framed

Not too many of these left at Lehman

Estimate $400-600

TONY KING (american, b. 1944)

'FRANKLIN 100'

1983, signed 'T. King '83' and numbered 31/100 in pencil, with margins. colour screenprint with gold leaf.

Sheet size: 23 3/4 x 46 1/2 in. With the palest mat staining, a minute 2mm. Abrasion above the numbering, faintly rubbed in two small 1/4-in. areas in the lower margin, otherwise in excellent original condition. Overmatted and framed in white-washed wood framed.

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