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Estimate: $ 30,000 - $ 40,000
ERNIE BARNES (1938 - 2009) In the Beginning.
Acrylic on cotton canvas, with artist built frame, circa 1970. 457x610 mm; 18x24 inches (canvas); 635x762 mm; 25x30 (with frame). Signed in acrylic, lower right recto. With the artist's ink copyright stamps, verso.
Provenance: acquired directly from the artist, Los Angeles; private collection, California.
In the Beginning is one of the artist's best known paintings and an iconic basketball image. It was also reproduced in an edition of 750 signed color lithographs.
Ernie Barnes framed his early paintings with the distressed wood from a weathered picket fence in honor of his late father - inspired by the fenced backyard of his childhood home in Durham, NC. In his autobiography, Barnes wrote, "I placed a painting against the fence and stood away and had a look. I was startled at the marriage between the old wood fence and the painting. It was perfect. In tribute...Daddy's fence would hug all my paintings in a prestigious New York gallery." Courtesy of the artist's estate.