Jun 10, 2014 - Sale 2353

Sale 2353 - Lot 75

Price Realized: $ 50,000
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 20,000 - $ 30,000
ROMARE BEARDEN (1911 - 1988)
Ritual Bayou.

Set of 6 editioned collages, color photo-lithograph mounted on finished plywood, as issued, 1971. Each approx. 394x508 mm; 15 1/2x20 inches. Each signed and numbered 18/75 in ink. Published by Sherwood Publishers, New York.

The individual titles are: Memories * Reunion * Ritual Bayou * Carolina Interior * Mississippi Monday * Byzantine Frieze.

Provenance: acquired directly from the artist; thence by descent to the current owner, private collection, New York.

This is a very scarce complete set from Romare Bearden's brief experimentation with editioned collages in the early 1970s. Each was made from photo-lithographs printed from collages Bearden had shown in the 1971 Musem of Modern Art, New York, exhibition, Romare Bearden: The Prevalence of Ritual and the 1975 Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, exhibition, Mysteries: Women in the Art of Romare Bearden.

However, it is not known, and very unlikely, that Bearden completed the intended edition of 75--it was an overwhelming project to match and collage the prints. Mary Lee Corlett in From Process to Print Graphic Works by Romare Bearden describes the overly ambitious production commissioned by Sam Shore, owner of Shorewood Atelier, New York. Shore was a major Bearden collector and donated The Block to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1978. Bearden and his publisher had originally selected 18 collages, and planned three different sets of six for the project. But the artist only made multiples from the first six collages. Swann Galleries sold the only other known complete set at auction on February 27, 2011. Corlett p. 13.