104 East 25th Street, New York, NY 10010  | 
(212) 254-4710  |  Mon - Fri, 10AM - 6PM
Follow Us:
  • We are happy to call you during the auction and place bids on your behalf. To arrange phone bidding, please call Swann's bid department during business hours.

    (212) 254-4710 ext. 0
    Mon - Fri 10AM - 6PM


    Or, e-mail a list of lots with the sale number and your contact information to phonebids@swanngalleries.com. Be sure to include a phone number where we can reach you.

    Bids may also be submitted via fax. Send a list of lots with the sale number and your contact information to (212) 979-1017. You will receive a confirmation before the sale.

    Sale 2460 | Lot 309
    Price Realized: $55,000With Buyer's Premium
    Show Hammer Price
    • Click Image To Enlarge

    • Sale 2460 Lot 309

      Relics (Speakeasy Corner).

      Drypoint, 1928. 302x252 mm; 11 7/8x9 7/8 inches, full margins. Edition of 111. Signed in pencil, lower right. A brilliant, luminous impression of this important print with richly-inked, velvety burr.

      According to McCarron, the location of this scene is at the intersection of Charles Street and West Fourth Street in Greenwich Village. The location of the speakeasy alluded to in Lewis's title was on the ground floor of the building across the street in the upper left, a space that was later occupied by Camilla's Village Garden restaurant. Kennedy Galleries, the artist's Mew York representative for most of his career, changed Lewis's title to Relics, probably in an attempt to tone down the subject.

      Among Lewis's most masterful prints are those depicting scenes of New York City life. These prints have historical interest, as the imagery captures the architecture and urban scenery of the time, while simultaneously incorporating ephemeral moments. The time of day, the weather, the lighting, the viewpoint--each aspect was important and added to the atmosphere of the scene. Lewis's use of shadows and light to create mood, life and movement is most powerful in his New York prints. Relics is his most celebrated etching, incorporating all of the aspects that make his prints such cherished glimpses into New York's bustling yester-year, while simultaneously capturing the timelessness of city life.

      This was Lewis's most popular print during his lifetime too. He sold out the entire intended edition of 100 soon after its completion, and it remains one of his most sought after prints today. McCarron 74.

      Estimate $40,000 - 60,000

      Price Realized (with Buyer's Premium) $55,000