Sep 19, 2019 - Sale 2516

Sale 2516 - Lot 142

Price Realized: $ 37,500
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 30,000 - $ 50,000
Dempsey and Firpo.

Lithograph on cream wove paper, 1923-24. 459x568 mm; 18x22 3/8 inches, wide margins. Edition of 103. Signed and titled in pencil, lower margin, and signed by the printer, Bolton Brown, in pencil, lower left. A superb impression of this large, important lithograph.

On September 14, 1923, Jack Dempsey, known as the "Manassa Mauler," and Luis Firpo, the "Bull of the Pampas," fought at the Polo Grounds in New York. During the first round, Firpo, after already having been knocked down seven times, finally knocked his rival out of the ring and into the press box. Dempsey was boosted back into the ring and then later won the fight, knocking Firpo out in the second round.

This monumental lithograph depicts that pivotal moment when Dempsey is sent through the ropes. The shocked crowd below supports Dempsey's falling body. Bellows (1882-1925) depicted himself as the balding spectator at the extreme left of the composition; he was at the match covering the event for the New York Evening Journal. The oil after which this lithograph was made is now in the collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. Mason 181.