An approximately 7 feet tall and 11 feet wide cross-bar diptych painted by Jean-Michel Basquiat in 1983 is a headliner at Art Basel in Switzerland this week.
Reportedly priced around $40M (USD), Hardware Store is offered at the fair by New York’s Van de Weghe gallery on behalf of an anonymous client.
The blockbuster work is hitting the market for the first time, according to Hypebeast, although it has been widely exhibited, including at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1992-1993, in Paris at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in 2018-2019 and at Galerie Bruno Bischofberger in 2019. One side is painted yellow and the other blue with Basquiat's signature floating heads, skulls and the inscriptions "eel" and "estimated value."
Postponed in-person since June 2020, Art Basel will open in the Swiss city from September 24 to 26, limited to masked visitors with proof of vaccination (among the requirements), or the fair can be browsed online.
Other highlights from the 272 galleries in the 2021 edition include Urs Fischer's 16.4-foot-high installation made with 2,500 loaves of bread, Untitled (Bread House) (2004-2006) presented by Jeffrey Deitch, reportedly offered for around $3 million.
A gold-leaf sculptural work by Lynda Benglis, along with a strong selection of Sean Scully, Matthew Wong, Joan Mitchell, Louise Bourgeois, Alice Neel and others will be offered by Cheim & Read.
Among the many very large-scale works to be offered at this year's edition, one vibrant example is Isabel Nolan's 115 by 212-inch hand-tufted wool work When the sky above will not be named (2021), from Kerlin Gallery.
Preview Art Basel online (public opening is Sept. 23).