John Lennon’s Death 40 Years On – What Sold At Art Basel Miami Beach – Jeffrey Epstein’s $139m Christie’s and Sotheby’s Sales

John Lennon By Andy Warhol

John Lennon’s Death 40 Years On Marked

Forty years ago today, December 8th 1980, the musician, writer and visual artist John Lennon was shot dead in front of his wife, the Conceptual Artist Yoko Ono, by the entrance of their home in the Dakota building in New York. The murder caused international outrage and public mourning on a scale not seen since the assassination of John F Kennedy. An area in Central Park West near the building was even renamed Strawberry Fields in his honour. Forty years later, the shock of this brutal murder by a deranged fan, Mark David Chapman is still raw for a certain generation. Lennon left a huge legacy of songs, drawings and writings.

Born and raised in Liverpool, John Lennon began his music career by forming his first band, the Quarrymen, which evolved into The Beatles the worlds most popular band in the 1960s. Lennon attended the Liverpool Art Institute (1957-1960). and continued drawing for the rest of his life. Lennon’s mostly worked in line drawing, either in pen, pencil, or Japanese Sumi ink as a medium. He wrote and illustrated  three bestselling books: In His Own Write (1964), A Spaniard in the Works (1965) and Skywriting By Word of Mouth (1987).

Yoko Ono has marked the 40th anniversary of Lennon’s murder with a public call for gun control. “The death of a loved one is a hollowing experience,” tweeted the 87-year-old artist, who lives in the Dakota building in Manhattan where her husband was shot forty years ago. “After 40 years, Sean, Julian and I still miss him. ‘Imagine all the people living life in peace,'” she stated quoting the 1971 song Imagine which she co-wrote.

Art Basel Virtually Present
Art Basel Virtually Presents Edition 5 Online

What Sold At Art Basel Miami Beach – Online Highlights

Art Basel has just closed its fifth online viewing room. Buoyant sales were made all around, partly due to price transparency online. Here are some of the highlights of this unusual edition of this important event.


$2.2 million: George Condo, Distanced Figures painting (2020) at Hauser & Wirth

$1.2 million: Joan Mitchell’s Untitled (ca. 1956) at David Zwirner

$1.2 million: Bridget Riley, Intervals 4 (2019) at David Zwirner

$750,000: Alice Neel, Aaron Kramer (1958) at David Zwirner

$675,000: Rashid Johnson, Anxious Red Painting July 8th (2020) at Hauser & Wirth

$650,000: Alex Katz, Reflection (2020) at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac

$350,000: Oscar Murillo, (untitled) surge (2019–20) at David Zwirner

$300,000: David Salle, Thinking, Looking (2020) at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac

$225,000: Glenn Ligon, Study for Debris Field #29 (2018) at Regen Projects

$125,000: Mel Bochner, Sezanne Said (2016) at Peter Freeman, Inc.

$75,000–100,000: Alex Katz’s Sinead (2017) at Peter Blum Gallery

$55,000: Rose B. Simpson, The Remembering (2020) at San Francisco’s Jessica Silverman Gallery

$45,000: A painting by Daniel Crews-Chubb at Timothy Taylor

$30,000 each: Three new paintings by Mel Bochner at Peter Freeman, Inc.

$11,500: A painting by Hilary Pecis at Timothy Taylor


John Chamberlain, SUPERSTARMARTINI (1999). Courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth.

$1–2 million: El Anatsui’s Blood of Sweat (2015) at Edward Tyler Nahem

$1 million: John Chamberlain, SUPERSTARMARTINI (1999) at Hauser & Wirth

$750,000: A photographic installation by Roni Horn at Xavier Hufkens

$425,000: Glenn Brown, Olympus Mons (2020) at Galerie Max Hetzler

$400,000: Simone Leigh, Sphinx (2020) at Hauser & Wirth

$200,000: Jack Pierson, HERE AND NOW (2020) at Regen Projects

$180,000: Yinka Shinobare, CBE Water Kid (Girl), (2020) at James Cohan Gallery

$85,000: A Tracey Emin neon sculptures at Xavier Hufkens

$85,000: Bernar Venet, Indeterminate Line (2020) at Kasmin

$85,000: Ian Davenport, Purple and Blue Study (After Bonnard), (2020) at Kasmin

$55,000: A ceramic by Sterling Ruby at Xavier Hufkens


Walton Ford, MORGUNDÖGG, (2020) at Galerie Max Hetzler.

$1 million or more: Walton Ford, MORGUNDÖGG, (2020) at Galerie Max Hetzler

$450,000: Robert Rauschenberg, Untitled (1969) at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac

$200,000–300,000: Cy Twombly, Untitled (1969–71) at Susan Sheehan Gallery

$100,000–150,000: David Hockney’s ink on paper Gregory, Hot Spring Arkansas (1976) at New York’s Kasmin

$60,000: Spencer Finch’s Color Notes (Autumn) 2019 II (2020) at James Cohan Gallery

$52,000: Nicolas Party’s watercolour Trees (2020) at Karma

$38,000: Trenton Doyle Hancock’s Step and Screw: The Approach (2020) at James Cohan Gallery

$35,000: Martin Kippenberger, Untitled (1986) at Bergamin & Gomide

$4,000–12,000 each: Eight photographs by Kwame Brathwaite at Philip Martin Gallery.

Sales figures courtesy ArtNet News


Picasso Work on Paper BTW This is not the actual one in the Epstein collection

Christie’s and Sotheby’s Told They Must disclose Jeffrey Epstein $139m Art Sales

The US Virgin Island attorney general is investigating paintings by Cézanne and Picasso belonging to the convicted paedophile Jeffery Epstein that were handled by two of the world’s leading auction houses.

The works valued at $139m may be part of civil forfeiture cases involving over 70 women and dating back more than 20 years. Denise N. George, the attorney general of the US Virgin Islands, alleges that Epstein misled government officials to secure lucrative tax breaks for his businesses while engaging in sex trafficking and the abuse of underage girls. The women are reportedly now in line to receive money from a compensation fund set up from Epstein’s estate valued in excess of $600m, following his death last summer in custody while facing numerous charges. Epstein’s death was ruled as a suicide.

Court documents filed on 2 December, request Christie’s and Sotheby’s release “all documents reflecting or relating to inquiries, sales, bids, communications with or about Jeffrey E. Epstein”; any “financial information” relating to those inquiries, sales or bids; and all documents “reflecting or relating to the tax treatment or transfers to other entities for artwork or other objects” by Epstein or his agents including the executors of his estate, Darren Indyke and Richard Khan.  The request was heavily redacted, the Art Newspaper reported. Both Christie’s and Sotheby’s have declined to comment.

Top Photo: Portrait of John Lennon by Andy Warhol

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