Apr 04, 2019 - Sale 2504

Sale 2504 - Lot 79

Price Realized: $ 75,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 75,000 - $ 100,000
HALE WOODRUFF (1900 - 1980)
Celestial Door.

Oil on linen canvas, circa 1967. 1016x1270 mm; 40 1/2x30 1/2 inches. Signed in oil, lower right recto. Signed (twice) and titled in ink on the upper stretcher bar verso.

Provenance: acquired directly from the artist; private collection, New York.

This striking canvas is an excellent example of Hale Woodruff's Celestial Gate series, one of his most significant contributions to postwar painting. Woodruff incorporated symbols from African art into the idiom of Abstract Expressionism, creating abstract shapes based on the forms of Ashanti gold weights and Dogon dwelling doors from Mali. Not seen publicly in fifty years, this significant canvas shows Woodruff's continued evolution as an abstract painter through the 1960s. Other examples from this series are in the collections of the Kenkeleba Gallery, New York, and the Spelman College Museum of Fine Arts, Atlanta.