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Harry Callahan

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Snap Up A Polaroid

Last week, Sotheby’s sold 1,200 works from the Polaroid Collection of Photography in what had become a very controversial auction.  Up for bid were images by legendary artists and photographers (Ansel Adams, David Hockney, Andy Warhol to name a few) going back to the 1940’s.

Luigi Ghirri - "Still Life" (Flowers)

Luigi Ghirri - "Still Life" (Flowers)

The sale, part of Polaroid’s bankruptcy court order, raised $12 million, surpassing Sotheby’s high estimate of $10.7 million, even when nine lots were pulled at the last minute over concerns about the company’s right to sell the pictures.  Some artists felt they had loaned the works to Polaroid in exchange for film and cameras while others, like Chuck Close, thought that the work would end up in a museum and not at auction.

Ansel Adams - Pine Branches, Yosemite Valley

Ansel Adams - Pine Branches, Yosemite Valley

Regardless of the controversy, we would have loved to have seen the entire Sotheby’s building taken over by photographs – imagine over 400 Ansel Adams landscapes decorating the walls!  And though the images ranged from the traditional to the downright strange, we did find some favorites with a botanical twist.

Imogen Cunningham - "Leaves"

Imogen Cunningham - "Leaves"

Paul Caponigro - "Selected Nature Studies"

Paul Caponigro - "Selected Nature Studies"

Harry Callahan - 'Trees and Mist' (Chicago, Trees in Snow)

Harry Callahan - 'Trees and Mist' (Chicago, Trees in Snow)

Gyorgy Kepes - 'Selected Still Life Studies'

Gyorgy Kepes - 'Selected Still Life Studies'

Photos from Sotheby’s