Press releases 2020

Berlin, 8 December 2020: Top prices at Grisebach: The results from the Autumn Auctions in Berlin

The premium lot from the Selected Works auction goes to modern art: Max Liebermann’s 1920 painting Die “Große Seestrasse in Wannsee mit Spaziergängern” went to a private collection in Germany, reaching the peak price of 745,000 EUR*. Georg Tappert’s spirited “Geisha-Revue” swept us to another high point of the evening. The competition for the 1911/13 painting was led by an American museum against bidders from Germany and beyond (709,000 EUR*). The brilliant, small-format gouache from René Magritte went to a North American collection for 500,000 EUR*. Georg Kolbe’s “Sklavin” tripled its estimated price and, after a long bidding war, found a new owner in North Rhine-Westphalia for 300,000 EUR*. Our Summer Auctions revealed distinctive interest, and lots of success, for the art of New Objectivity, and that trend continues at Grisebach. Rudolf Schlichter’s “Speedy als Madonna” from 1934 went to a collection in northern Germany for 262,500 EUR*. Curt Querner’s striking self-portrait from 1934 and Jeanne Mammen’s “Vor der Komödie am Kudamm, nachts” were acquired for 87,500 EUR* and 112,500 EUR*, respectively. The enthusiasm for New Objectivity is shared by our American audience as well. After long, competitive biddings, American collectors took Hans Grundig’s “Mädchen mit rosa Hut” from 1925 (337,500 EUR*), Franz Lenk’s “Altes Wehr” from 1930 (100,000 EUR*), and Albert Birkle’s “Kreuztragung (Friedrichstraße)” from 1924 (275,000 EUR*).

Two world records made in the Selected Works auction revealed that Contemporary Art is just as beloved as the Modern Classics. A long, international bidding war for Arnulf Rainer’s 1959 Untitled (Rotes Bild) ended with a 400,000 EUR* bid and went to a private collection in Germany. And Joseph Beuys’ “Filzanzug” from 1970 was sold for 137,500 EUR*, the highest price it has ever sold for at auction.  

The Contemporary Art Auction took place on Friday evening, alongside the Modern Art Auction. Its compelling and diverse selection was embraced by many and showed splendid returns. Per Kirkeby’s large-format landscape from 2006, “Untitled”, went to Great Britain for 375,000 EUR*. From the Thomas and Raffaela von Salis collection, an Arnulf Rainer work, entitled “Monte” (1962), achieved another premium for 212,500 EUR*. Norbert Schwontkowski’s 2007 work “Im Park” sold for 112,500 EUR*, a sensational price for the artist. Other works displayed increasing value as well, such as Robert Mangold’s 1986 Untitled #5 (estimate EUR 25,000 / result EUR 100,000*) and Georg Herold’s “Kleiner Bernhardiner” from his 1985 series Deutschsprachige Gipfel (estimate EUR 6,000 / result 40,000*).

We are proud of the enormous success made by the Special Auction, which featured the Mario Calábria collection. The former Brazilian Ambassador to Germany’s collection sold nearly 100% of its lots and doubled its estimate. Spirits were high in the auction hall and on the telephones thanks to top hammer prices for works from the likes of Woty Werner (“Entspannung” 1953, estimate EUR 1,000 / result EUR 26,250*), A.R. Penck (Untitled. Before 1980, estimate EUR 30,000 / result EUR 131,250*), and Mavignier (Untitled (K.B. 47) 1961, estimate 50,000 / result 100,000 EUR*). This impressive collection will continue its offerings early next year with an Online Only Sale.  

The Autumn Auction for Photography took place on December 2nd, where an unknown photographer lent the autumn atmosphere to us all. Their pictorialist work, “Herbststimmung”, attracted a lot of attention and found a new home in the United States for 50,000 EUR*. A Swiss collection took both the auction’s cover lot, Mitch Epstein’s “Flag” from 2000, for 31,250 EUR* and Saul Leiter’s “Wet Window” for 10,000 EUR* (estimate 4,000 EUR).

The top lot at the 19th Century Art Auction was Carl Gustav Carus’ “Schiffsmühle auf der Elbe bei Dresden”. The artwork, dated 1826, climbed to a staggering 137,500 EUR* and will return to its native Saxony. Karl Wilhelm Diefenbach’s painting from 1901, “Frage an die Sterne”, was met with great interest and went for 50,000 EUR* (estimate 10,000 EUR). We were thrilled to see value increases for high quality oil studies. A view of Naples by the French artist André Groux exceeded its estimate sixfold (22,500 EUR*). Anna Dorothea Therbusch’s “Selbstbildnes als Flora” (circa 1765/1768) went to a private collection in Germany for 56,240 EUR*.

Grisebach is delighted that such enthusiasm and engagement from German and international museums was present at all auctions.

With an overall result of 17,2 mil.* Grisebach can look back at a very successful autumn season.

Micaela Kapitzky

* All results incl. premium


Berlin, 30 October 2020: From Beuys to Liebermann. Museum quality: “Selected Works” at Grisebach

It’s rare to come across an object that can so brilliantly bring a historical figure to life. An absolute treasure and one of European porcelain art’s most compelling creations will be offered at auction – a flute case made in Meissen in 1761 for the personal use of Frederick the Great (EUR 250,000–350,000).

Upcoming highlights in the Modern Art department include Georg Tappert’s vibrant “Geisha-Revue” from 1911/13, an evocative embodiment of pre-1914 exoticism and an incunabulum of German Expressionism (EUR 350,000–450,000), and Otto Dix’s “Zirkusscene” from 1923 (EUR 200,000–300,000), a metaphorically charged depiction of life in the 1920s with an impressive exhibition history. Especially noteworthy is Alexej von Jawlensky’s gripping interplay of figuration and abstraction in “Abstrakter Kopf: Komposition Nr.9” from 1924, which displays Jawlensky’s pursuit in creating an archetype of the human face in intense and luminous colouring (EUR 250,000-350,000). Following the world record for Hans Grundig at the previous spring auction (EUR 462,500 for “Schüler mit roter Mütze”), we have “Mädchen mit rosa Hut” from 1925, another iconic piece of Dresdener New Objectivity and one of the artist’s last early paintings on the art market (EUR 100,000-150,000). “Cammin” from 1934 displays exciting colour contrasts between turquoise, yellow and brown, making it a wonderful example of Lyonel Feininger’s prismatically broken cubism (EUR 500,000-700,000). The painting is a testimony to Feininger’s summers spent on the Pomeranian coast of the Baltic Sea. A gauche will be offered in our evening sale from the master of mystery, René Magritte. “Le domaine enchanté” is a 1953 study on the mural cycle inside a casino in Knokke-Heist, a Belgian coastal town, and serves as a deconstruction of their allegedly impregnable security, it’s estimated at EUR 400,000–600,000.

The highlight of Contemporary Art featured in the “Selected Works” is a large format from the master of fascinating realism, Karin Kneffel’s “Untitled” from 2003, another museum quality painting from the Thomas and Raffaela von Salis Collection (EUR 100,000–120,000). A major discovery is Catsuit - after William Morris (EUR 100,000-120,000) and its companion piece Victoria (EUR 100,000–120,000) by South African artist Marlene Dumas in collaboration with Dutch artist Bert Boogaard. The works combine two artistic worlds, Dumas’ watercolour female figures are superimposed with Boogaard’s optically transparent ornamentation.

The multidisciplinary range of evening offerings will be enriched by a rarity from the realm of photography. The most important portrait photographer of his time joins forces with one of the most important modern artists in “Porträt Wassily Kandisky” by Hugo Erfurth in 1925 (EUR 10,000–15,000). The vintage print is from the estate of László Moholy-Nagy and was exhibited in the legendary 1938 Bauhaus premiere exhibition at the New York Museum of Modern Art.

A special auction with its own separate catalogue will be dedicated to the Calábria Collection on December 4th. The auction will feature the collection from the former Brazilian ambassador, Mário Calábria, who cultivated a large network of artist friends in East Berlin. His passion for collecting was primarily devoted to abstract and concrete art, which is exemplified by the major works from Hermann Glöckner, Almir da Silva Mavignier, among others. Calábria established his collection not only out of passion, but also because he felt a social responsibility to support artists, both materially and ideationally.

The Contemporary Art department will proudly present a compelling and varied selection. From approximately 180 lots, the highlight is Per Kirkeby’s impressive oil painting “Untitled” from 2006, estimated at EUR 300,000–400,000. The monumental, abstract landscape was exhibited at the extensive retrospective honouring the artist’s 70th birthday at the Louisiana Museum of Art. Martin Kippenberger’s “Young Beach believe Us. Young Beachbelievers” from 1986, shows a typical, ironic collage, with mixed media like differing cotton fabrics, silicone, and latex. This quirky and pop-esque sujet, while uncharacteristic from the artist, is from the Blake Byrne Collection, Paris/Los Angeles (EUR 50,000–70,000).

The Thomas and Raffaela von Salis Collection has been eclectically developed for more than three decades, and serves as a testament to the art dealer duo’s keen eye and distinguished taste. Grisebach is thrilled to include individual works from their collection in the upcoming Autumn Auctions. The collector’s refined sensibility and lifelong passion for art is reflected in fascinating juxtapositions of artists such as Arnulf Rainer, Robert Mangold, Clement Meadmore, Lucio Fontana and Mario Giacomelli, amongst others.

The highlight lot of the 19th Century Art auction is Carl Gustav Carus’ oil painting Schiffsmühle auf der Elbe bei Dresden from around 1826, a precious jewel from the likes of Dresdener Romanticism – the resemblance to Caspar David Friedrich is indisputable – the work is estimated at EUR 100,000–150,000. Peder Balke was also inspired by Friedrich, and his fellow Scandinavian Johan Christian Dahl, as seen in his artwork Kliff an der nord-norwegischen Küste (around 1845, EUR 30,000–40,000). The “Turner of Scandinavia” was an exceptional artist whose spectacular studies can be seen on display at the National Museum in Oslo as well as in the Louvre. The glowing sunset in Carl Rottmann’s Aegina mit dem ApollotempelI (circa 1835, EUR 18,000–24,000) transforms the piece into a brilliant celebration of colour. The study is from his famous Grecian cycle and serves as a prelude to his artistic leitmotif of the 1840s.

175 lots for modern and contemporary photography alone will be offered at the Autumn Auctions at Grisebach. Special collector’s pieces include the cover lot entitled Flag by the American photographer Mitch Epstein from the year 2000 (EUR 25,000–30,000), as well as Parlour Games’ Munich from 1991 by one of the most famous photographers of the 20th century: Helmut Newton (EUR 20,000–30,000).

In total, nearly 900 works of art will be offered in our auctions taking place from December 2nd to 4th, with a lower estimated price of 15.5 million Euros. The preview in Berlin will take place at three different locations on Fasanenstraße (25, 27, 73) beginning November 20th until December 1st.

Micaela Kapitzky


Berlin, 4 September 2020: Juergen Teller “If You Pay Attention” and “Araki Teller, Leben und Tod”

Grisebach is thrilled to present two exhibitions with German photographer, Juergen Teller, opening on September 12th: “If You Pay Attention” and “Araki Teller, Leben und Tod”.

“If You Pay Attention” was completed in collaboration with Dovile Drizyte, and features a series of photographs that were taken at the end of 2019 to the beginning of 2020, on an adventurous, heavenly, yet life-threatening journey through Iran and will be exhibited for the very first time.

Drizyte, Teller’s partner, wore a chador during a part of their trip and consequently discovered a new identity whilst following this dress code. Teller recalled how:

“I didn’t just want to take tourist pictures, I wanted to put something of myself or us into the pictures of Iran, but I didn’t know what or how in the beginning. At the same time, I haven’t yet quite found a way of photographing Dovile, my girlfriend. Sometimes it is difficult with people who are very close to you. It took me years to photograph my Mother.”

Next door, at Villa Grisebach, Teller will be presenting his new book, “Araki Teller, Leben und Tod” which was made in collaboration with the Japanese photographer, Nobuyoshi Araki. “Leben und Tod” is the culmination of their joint exhibition at artspace AM, Tokyo held at the end of 2019 and is published by Steidl.

This deeply personal project centres on Teller’s “Leben und Tod” (Life and Death) series, in which he reflects upon the death of his uncle and stepfather Artur. Teller juxtaposes photographs of his mother and their hometown in Bubenreuth, Bavaria with images from his journey in Bhutan with his partner, Dovile Drizyte that epitomize life and fertility.

Inspired by this series, Araki asked to photograph Teller’s “childhood memory objects”, items that carry special emotional significance to both him and his parents. Teller eagerly collected these personal treasures, gathering toys, a porcelain figurine, and bridges created in the family’s string instruments’ bridge-making workshop. Araki’s resulting images are haunting, yet playful, creating a spellbinding tale once paired with Teller’s original story.

Juergen Teller (1964, Erlangen, Germany) studied at the Bavarian State College for Photography in Munich before moving to London in 1986. Successful in both the art world and commercial photography, he has photographed campaigns for brands such as Celine, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs and Vivienne Westwood and authored editorials for magazines such as Arena Homme Plus, Pop, Purple, System and W. In 2003 Teller was awarded the Citibank Prize for Photography and in 2018 the Special Presentation ICP Infinity Award. Major solo exhibitions of his work took place at the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, Moscow (2018); Fotomuseum, Winterthur (2018); Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin (2017); Bundeskunsthalle, Bonn (2016); DESTE Foundation, Athens (2014); Institute of Contemporary Art, London (2013); Daelim Museum, Seoul (2011); Dallas Contemporary, Texas (2011); Le Consortium, Dijon (2010) and Fondation Cartier pour l’art Contemporain, Paris (2006). In 2007 he was invited to represent Ukraine as one of five artists at the 52nd Venice Biennale. Teller’s work has been acquired by numerous international collections, including the Center Pompidou, Paris, the Fondation Cartier pour l’art Contemporain, Paris, the International Center for Photography, New York, the National Portrait Gallery, London. Teller has published over 50 books and exhibition catalogues.

Press contact
Sarah Buschor
T +49 (0)30 885915 65

Saturday, 12th September 2020, 11am to 6pm
Grisebach, Fasanenstrasse 25 and 27, 10719 Berlin

Juergen Teller & Dovile Drizyte “If You Pay Attention”
Fasanenstrasse 27, 10719 Berlin
Exhibition until 7th November 2020
Mon to Fri 10am to 6pm, Sat 11am to 4pm

Juergen Teller “Araki Teller, Leben und Tod”
Fasanenstrasse 25, 10719 Berlin
Book launch and exhibition until 24th October 2020
Mon to Fri 10am to 6pm, Sat 11am to 4pm
Berlin, 4th September 2020


Berlin, 13 July 2020: One Evening – Five World Records. The results of the Summer Auctions in Berlin

After a long and international bidding war a spectacular EUR 537,500* was garnered for Albrecht Dürer’s iconic piece of art history, his copperplate engraving “Adam und Eva”. With that, the engraving made itself a new world record at Grisebach, and it is also the fifth highest-priced graphic from Dürer ever sold. Yet another iconic artwork by the most important German Renaissance artist, “Melencolia I”, sold for EUR 318,750* and went to the same British private collection.

The Collectors once again held Modern Art in the highest esteem. Emil Nolde’s masterpiece of Expressionism, “Südsee Landschaft II” from 1915, was offered on the auction market for the first time and swiftly became the top lot of the “Selected Works” auction, finding a new owner in Northern Germany for EUR 949,000*. Another museum masterpiece, “Pommersche Bauern” by fellow Brücke artist Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, was sold for EUR 500,000*. Grisebach set a world record for a truly extraordinary discovery in the realm of New Objectivity. The painting “Schüler mit roter Mütze” by Dresden artist Hans Grundig, is arguably one of the artist’s most important works and was sold for EUR 462,500* to a private collection in Southern Germany. Wolfgang Paalen’s painting “Avertissement I (Peinture)”, yet another fascinating work of Modern Art, also set a new world record (EUR 387,500*, private collection Austria).

Günther Uecker’s “Bewegtes Feld” was found at the forefront of the Contemporary Art auction. The ZERO artist’s striking nail artwork found a new owner for EUR 525,000* (estimate: 200,000–300,000). The second-highest figure was obtained by Sigmar Polke’s 1993 untitled work (EUR 400,000*). The greatly anticipated carpet by Rudolf Stingel (“Untitled”. 2012) proved to be a sensation and sold for EUR 93,750* to a private collection in the United States. Norbert Bisky’s “SCHWARZMALER II” (EUR 137,500*) also achieved another top result and world record.

The highlight of the Photography department, “Elephant and Kilimanjaro” (1984/2005) by Peter Beard, was offered in the Selected Works auction and sold for EUR 150,000*. Other exceptional photographs were honoured with high prices as well. Werner Mantz’ “Haus der Kölnischen Zeitung auf der Internationalen Presse-Ausstellung ‘Pressa’ bei Nacht, Köln” was sold for EUR 47,500* (estimate: 4,000–6,000), Otto Steinert’s “Aggression II” from 1966 went to a Swiss private collection for EUR 32,500* (estimate: 3,500–5,500) and Karl Blossfeldt’s iconic portfolio “Urformen der Kunst” from 1915/25 found a new owner for EUR 46,250*.

Grisebach’s first Online Only auction took place from June 19th to July 5th 2020 and can proudly report high bidding rates: Out of 120 works offered, 108 were sold, meaning 90% of the lots. With a total result of EUR 270,000 including premium, Grisebach can look back on a very successful online premiere. The concept of a digital auction platform with high quality works of art will be continued with our second Online Only auction from 31st July to 9th August (estimates up to EUR 3,000).

With four auctions on two days (including Online Only), the summer auctions generated a total of 16 million euros.

Micaela Kapitzky
Berlin, 13 July 2020
* All results incl. premium


Berlin, 9 June 2020: A journey through the history of art with the curated evening auction at GRISEBACH: From Dürer over Jawlensky to Balkenhol

Our upcoming evening auction spans a sweeping historical range over five centuries long – featuring works from Albrecht Dürer, over Alexej Jawlensky, to Stephan Balkenhol.

The journey begins with two copperplate engravings by Albrecht Dürer, the most important German Renaissance artist. The two iconic works were produced during the artist’s lifetime, “Adam und Eva” in 1504 and “Melencolia I” in 1514 (both EUR 80,000–120,000) and will be sold at auction in Berlin on 9 July. An impressive excursion into the Baroque will follow, as well as the large format, extravagant still life “Großer Blumenstrauß mit Kaiserkrone im Holzbottich”, which Jan Brueghel the Younger painted around 1625/30 (EUR 800,000–1,200,000) and is sure to be a highlight of the evening.

From there, we’ll take a large leap into the modern era of 1909 with a masterpiece from Alexej von Jawlensky´s most important artistic period. Using extraordinarily vibrant colours, he formulated a new concept of landscape painting with his “Landschaft mit Bäumen” (EUR 300,000–400,000). A special discovery awaits with Mela Muter´s “Kindergruppe” from 1913. This work, created by an artist who has been unjustifiably almost forgotten, depicts a striking group portrait with immense humanity and depth (estimate EUR 180,000–240,000). That same year Emil Nolde took a trip to the South Seas, and in 1915 he painted “Südsee Landschaft II” (EUR 800,000–1,200,000), a chef d’oeuvre of Expressionism, which Grisebach has the pleasure of offering for the first time on the auction market. Another masterpiece, from fellow Die Brücke artist Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, will be called for with “Pommersche Bauern”, an oil painting with two characteristically angular heads carved out of wood (1924), estimated at EUR 400,000–600,000. Around 1925/28 Hans Grundig, the icon of Dresdener New Objectivity, created “Schüler mit roter Mütze” – a pivotal artwork with an impressive exhibition history (EUR 150,000–200,000).

We are pleased to offer a significant work by the renowned ZERO artist Günther Uecker, from one of his most important creative phases, “Bewegtes Feld” from 1971 (EUR 200,000–300,000). Another work with international museum quality and top-class provenance is “Ohne Titel” (1993) by Sigmar Polke, which is estimated at EUR 300,000 and will also be offered in our evening auction. An oil painting by Neo Rauch will make its debut on the German art market, “Leitung” is an exemplary work from 1997, during the Leipzig artist’s powerful early phase (estimate EUR 80,000–120,000). Finally, we will round off our summer evening auction´s diverse collection covering more than 500 years of art with Rudolf Stingel’s carpet (“Untitled” from 2012), a testimony to an ephemeral exhibition experience (estimate EUR 50,000-70,000).

The top lot of the Contemporary Art auction is Katharina Grosse’s exceptionally powerful and luminous painting, a work that exhibits her typical gesture with fresh dynamics (“Ohne Titel”, 2000, EUR 200,000–300,000). German Minimal Art’s most important protagonist Imi Knoebel will also be present. His sculpture “Frauenstück” was created in 1989 and is estimated at  EUR 70,000–90,000. André Butzer’s “Pluton” from 2002 confronts us with a mysterious, pastose painted figure that appears to have sprung from a comic strip (EUR 50,000–70,000).

Naturally, there will be special collector’s items to discover in the medium of photography. Artists such as Gustave Le Gray, one of the most sought-after photographers of the 19th century will be included. His impressive city panorama “Pont du Carrousel, vue du Pont Royal, Paris”, was created around 1859 (EUR 10,000–15,000). Another highlight will be offered in our Selected Works auction by the recently departed American photographer Peter Beard, “Elephant and Kilimanjaro” from 1984/2005 (EUR 100,000–150,000). Our Photography auction will also feature two other eye-catching trouvailles. The “Givenchy Hat for ´Jardin des Modes´” (Paris 1958) by Frank Horvart combines fashion history with the spirit of the epoch (EUR 12,000-15,000). And we are pleased to offer an artwork from one of the most important German photographers in history, Germaine Krull’s “Daretha [Dorothea] Albu. Kostümentwurf: Lotte Pritzel” from around 1925 (EUR 3,000–5,000).

A total of 666 artworks will be offered in 4 catalogues at Grisebach on two auction days with an average total estimate of 15 million.

The preview will take place in Berlin from 17 June to 8 July at Fasanenstraße 25, 27 and 73.

Micaela Kapitzky


Berlin, 28 February 2020: Hilma af Klint‘s wild drawing

17 March to 11 April 2020
Opening: Tuesday, 17 March 2020, 6p.m.
Grisebach shows works by Hilma af Klint and spiritual drawings from her surroundings

Stockholm, November 1906: Swedish artist Hilma af Klint is 44 years old when she turns her life upside down. She turns away from the academic painting in which she was trained and begins to work abstractly – in ever larger formats. In the following months she creates numerous series, including the cycle “The Ten Greatest”, whose paintings measure more than three meters in height. Kandinsky’s, Malevich’s, or Mondrian’s experiments with non-representational painting were still a long way off when Hilma af Klint wrote in her notebook: “The attempts I have made [...] will astonish mankind”. Her prediction came true in 2018, when the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York opened a major retrospective of her work: The show attracted more than 600,000 visitors and became the most successful exhibition in the museum’s history.

Grisebach is pleased to present Julia Voss’ biography “Die Menschheit in Erstaunen versetzen: Hilma af Klint, Leben und Werk” (S. Fischer Verlag) a selection of works by the Swedish painter, together with drawings and documents from the Monica von Rosen/EWF Private Archive.

For the first time in Germany, the only surviving self-portrait that Hilma af Klint painted of herself is being shown: In the undated painting, the artist presents herself against a blue background, wearing a long white robe. This painting is supplemented by ten other works by the painter that have never been shown in public before: hand-coloured photographs that reproduce the series “The Ten Greatest” in miniature format. Hilma af Klint probably edited these photographs in the early 1920s, when she was striving to make her work, which she herself described as “groundbreaking”, accessible to a wider public. Subsequently, she had all 193 works taken between 1906 and 1915 photographed. In a second step, she coloured these photographs or reproduced them in additional watercolours and glued them into bound albums. With this life’s work en miniature, she created a “museum in a suitcase” with which she travelled to Dornach, Amsterdam and London.

At the same time, the exhibition takes a look at the history and surroundings of Hilma af Klint’s work: She took part in her first seances at the age of seventeen. Among the sponsors of the young Hilma af Klint was Bertha Valerius (1824-1895), a painter and photographer who held spiritual sessions as a medium in Stockholm. As a young artist Hilma af Klint was part of the social circle of Huldine Beamish (1836-1892), whose guests included the writer August Strindberg.

The old orders were suspended during these séances: the living meet the dead, women become men and vice versa, past and future are pushed into the present, and the styles of drawing with pencil on paper explode.

The exhibition opening and book presentation with a conversation between Daniel Birnbaum and Julia Voss will take place on 17 March 2020 at 6p.m. at Fasanenstrasse 25.

The exhibition was curated by Julia Voss and Anna Ballestrem.