Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 20 October 2020

Farhad Moshiri’s intricate beadwork piece expected to fetch more than Dh1m at auction

The work is part of Christie's new season of online auctions, to take place from October to November

Christie’s Middle East is hosting its annual Middle Eastern Modern and Contemporary art auction online this year, with Farhad Moshiri’s Once Upon a Time leading the sale.

The work by the Iranian artist was last shown in public at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh in 2018 and is expected to sell for $285,000 to $360,000.

Produced in 2011, it features intricate beadwork inspired by images from used postcards distributed during festive seasons. In creating Once Upon a Time, Moshiri used an old frosting set to apply the paint, as seen in its decorative frosted borders.

The work is part of a series commissioned by Louis Vuitton, which made the artist one of the first in the region to create work for the luxury brand. Employing the help of Iranian women artisans to execute the beadwork, Moshiri weaves traditional Eastern practices into Western consumer culture.

Detail of Farhad Moshiri's 'Once Upon a Time'. Courtesy Christie's 
Detail of Farhad Moshiri's 'Once Upon a Time'. Courtesy Christie's

The auction, the bidding for which will take place online from Wednesday, November 11, to Tuesday, November 24, is among four that Christie’s will present in the autumn season. A total of 50 works will be included in the sale, including pieces by Samia Halaby, Mohamed Melehi and Hayv Kahraman.

An untitled work by Melehi, estimated between $70,000 to $94,000, features a cresting wave against the a midnight blue backdrop, while Kahraman’s The Interpreter depicts the Iraqi artist’s signature female figure on painted wood.

This year, Christie’s is introducing a design section with 10 pieces assembled by architect Viktor Udzenija. Its three other sales include a charity auction for Beirut named We Are All Beirut, aimed at helping the cultural scene recover following the devastating blast in the Lebanese capital in August. Details on the artists and works available have yet to be announced, and will be held in late October.

Other upcoming auctions are Watches Online: The Dubai Edit, which will offer collectible items, including one expected to sell for more than $4 million, and a guest-curated art auction titled Matters of Material. The latter is curated by art advisor Dina Nasser-Khadivi, who will focus on artists from the Middle East, Latin America and Africa that are working with recycled materials and turning them into art pieces.

Christie’s auction calendar begins on Saturday, October 10, with the viewing period for the watch sale, followed by a bidding period until the end of the month. The artworks will be on view beginning Wednesday, November 4, with bidding to begin on November 11.

More information can be found on christies.com

Updated: October 4, 2020 11:21 AM

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