Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

This June at Clars Auctions we are thrilled to present a sale that is bursting with exceptional artwork from iconic creators. One of the most exciting pieces in this month’s Important Summer Fine Art Sale is a never-before-sold oil on canvas painting by world-renowned Spanish Surrealist, Salvador Dalí.


Over the course of the early to mid-twentieth century, Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics. The painting in this month’s sale is titled Portrait of Mrs. Luther Greene and dates to 1942 — the year of the artist’s first retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.


Salvador Dalí (Spanish, 1904–1989), Portrait of Mrs. Luther Greene, 1942, oil on canvas, signed and dated right center, 24″ x 20″ (61 x 50.8 cm). Accompanied by preliminary study sketches of Mrs. Greene by Dalí from 1942 (charcoal/ink on paper). Provenance: Private collection (by descent); Mrs. Luther Greene (Ellen Chamberlain), New York. Catalog reference: Fundació Gala - Salvador Dalí: Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings by Salvador Dalí (cat. no. P 565). © Fundació Gala - Salvador Dalí
Salvador Dalí (Spanish, 1904–1989), Portrait of Mrs. Luther Greene, 1942, oil on canvas, signed and dated right center, 24″ x 20″ (61 cm x 50.8 cm). Accompanied by preliminary study sketches of Mrs. Greene by Dalí from 1942 (charcoal/ink on paper). Provenance: Private collection (by descent); Mrs. Luther Greene (Ellen Chamberlain), New York. Catalog reference: Fundació Gala – Salvador Dalí: Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings by Salvador Dalí (cat. no. P 565). © Fundació Gala – Salvador Dalí
Estimate: $700,000–$1,000,000

The portrait depicts the patron seated in the foreground, wrapped in a wine-red sheet, with her dark hair juxtaposed against olive skin. Behind her is a classic Dalíesque landscape, an otherworldly desert with smooth orange sand under a gradient green and blue sky. Two figures stand in the distance, one presenting as a partially skeletonized angel of sorts — with one wing intact and both arms cut at the shoulder — recalling antique marbles, such as the Venus de Milo. An amorphous hill on the far right is dotted with buildings, resembling a forgotten ghost town in desolate terrain, and a small boat sits beached by the shore on the far left. This exemplary piece of Dalí’s catalog is accompanied by the preliminary sketches done by the artist in preparation for the painting.

In addition to the aforementioned work, we are also pleased to offer abstract sculptures by Claire Falkenstein, a life-size bronze gown by Karen LaMonte, a suite of six bullfighting paintings by LeRoy Neiman, an abstract expressionist oil by Tancredi Parmeggiani, and much more in our Important Summer Fine Art Sale on June 20th.

Read More

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Hernando Ruiz Ocampo

Ocampo developed a singular style that expressed the Filipino experience through emotive color, form, and abstraction.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Matt Gondek

Gondek is known for colorful canvases with thick, bold lines depicting cartoon and comic book characters from the late 20th century.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

A noteworthy piece in our Important Summer Fine Art Sale is a serigraph by American Pop art pioneer, Roy Lichtenstein. Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures to come out of the Pop Art movement and is most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.


The print featured in the June sale is titled Reverie and dates to 1965. Pictured is a young woman with blonde hair and a melancholy expression, holding a microphone while a speech bubble over her head reads the lyrics, “The melody haunts my reverie.” This lyric — taken from the song Stardust by Tin Pan Alley musicians Hoagy Carmichael and Mitchell Parish — was written in 1927 and popularized during the 1930s big band era. The retro feel of the imagery is characteristic of Lichtenstein’s work, as is the comic-style dot work, bold color, and thick, black lines. Reverie was created for a portfolio, titled 11 Pop Artists published by Original Editions, that included 2 other prints by the artist as well as prints by Andy Warhol, Tom Wesselman, and other major names in the Pop Art movement.


Roy Lichtenstein (American, 1923–1997), Reverie, from 11 Pop Artists, Volume II, 1965, screenprint in colors, 27″ x 23″.
Roy Lichtenstein (American, 1923–1997), Reverie, from 11 Pop Artists, Volume II, 1965, screenprint in colors, 27″ x 23″.
Estimate: $70,000–$100,000

In addition to the aforementioned work, we are also pleased to offer abstract sculptures by Claire Falkenstein, a life-size bronze gown by Karen LaMonte, a suite of six bullfighting paintings by LeRoy Neiman, an abstract expressionist oil by Tancredi Parmeggiani, and much more in our Important Summer Fine Art Sale on June 20th.

Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artists to Watch: California

With this inaugural auction, we take great pride in introducing ten esteemed artists who persistently enrich the tapestry of California art.

  • Auction
  • Modern + Contemporary

Spring Modern + Contemporary Art Highlights

This March we are excited to present several very special works in our Spring Modern + Contemporary Art + Design Auction.

  • Auction
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

A striking highlight in our Important Summer Fine Art Sale is an oil on canvas painting by key Harlem Renaissance figure, Aaron Douglas. Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations.


These locations included several Historically Black Colleges and Universities, the Harlem YMCA, and one of his most acclaimed works, Aspects of Negro Life, at the New York Public Library in Harlem. Douglas worked with writers Alain Locke and W.E.B. Du Bois, and had illustrations included in publications like Vanity Fair, the NAACP journal The Crisis, and Opportunity: A Journal of Negro Life among others. Douglas developed a distinctive, graphic style that combined the aesthetic exploration of modernism with more traditional African subject matter. He often used bold color and evocative light sources with leafy foliage and human figures in silhouette. These figures are at times depicted in an African village or tribal setting, dancing, holding spears, or traversing a jungle-like landscape.


Aaron Douglas (American, 1899–1979), Untitled, circa 1955, oil on canvas, signed lower left, 22″ x 44″.
Aaron Douglas (American, 1899–1979), Untitled, circa 1955, oil on canvas, signed lower left, 22″ x 44″.
Estimate: $10,000–$20,000

In other instances, figures are shown in American cityscapes, holding industrial tools with skyscrapers looming in the distance, or playing brass instruments in bands. The work in our June sale shows three silhouetted human figures holding spears and chasing five bison-like animals through an abstracted environment that uses the interplay between color and light to mimic an earthly landscape while remaining nonobjective. Douglas’s approach marries the celebratory aspects of Harlem Renaissance figuration with an Orphism-inspired understanding of color theory that creates a composition in which movement and light become as intrinsic to the material as paint and canvas.

In addition to the aforementioned work, we are also pleased to offer abstract sculptures by Claire Falkenstein, a life-size bronze gown by Karen LaMonte, a suite of six bullfighting paintings by LeRoy Neiman, an abstract expressionist oil by Tancredi Parmeggiani, and much more in our Important Summer Fine Art Sale on June 20th.

Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Hernando Ruiz Ocampo

Ocampo developed a singular style that expressed the Filipino experience through emotive color, form, and abstraction.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Matt Gondek

Gondek is known for colorful canvases with thick, bold lines depicting cartoon and comic book characters from the late 20th century.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

This May at Clars we are proud to present a collection of works by master caricaturist — Albert Hirschfeld — who is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.


Hirschfeld was born in 1903 and was raised in New York City, where he studied at the Art Students League and the National Academy of Design. Hirschfeld furthered his artistic studies in Europe, and upon returning to the United States he was commissioned by the New York Herald Tribune to create cartoons to accompany their articles. This early exposure led to a long career of illustration in publications, including The New York Times, TV Guide, American Mercury, and Life Magazine.


Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Harry Truman: I'm Sitting on Top of the World, 1954, gouache and ink on paper, published for the cover of Colliers Magazine January 20, 1954, 15″ x 12.5″.
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Harry Truman: I’m Sitting on Top of the World, 1954, gouache and ink on paper, published for the cover of Colliers Magazine January 20, 1954, 15″ x 12.5″.
Estimate: $3,000–$5,000

Perhaps Hirschfeld’s most well-known work is his illustrations of theater and film actors, often featured on Broadway playbills. Some of Hirschfeld’s credits include playbills for productions of Annie Get Your Gun, My Fair Lady, and Hello, Dolly!. Hirschfeld’s most famous actor portraits include those of Marilyn Monroe, Groucho Marx, Liza Minelli, and Barbara Streisand. In 2023, Clars offered the collection of iconic performer Rita Moreno, which included personalized illustrations by Hirschfeld of the actress in the films West Side Story and The Ritz. Hirschfeld also drew many popular musicians of the mid-twentieth century, including Ella Fitzgerald, Jerry Garcia, The Beatles, and Elvis Presley.


Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), <em>Joseph McCarthy Extinguishes Flame on the Statue of Liberty</em>, 1950, gouache on paper, published by <em>Collier</em> July 15, 1950, 13.25″ x 12.5″.
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Joseph McCarthy Extinguishes Flame on the Statue of Liberty, 1950, gouache on paper, published by Collier July 15, 1950, 13.25″ x 12.5″.
Estimate: $2,000–$4,000
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Harry Truman and Bernard Baruch, He'd Rather Write than Be President, circa 1945, watercolor and ink on paper, 16″ x 13″.
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Harry Truman and Bernard Baruch, He’d Rather Write than Be President, circa 1945, watercolor and ink on paper, 16″ x 13″.
Estimate: $1,500–$2,000

Hirschfeld was known for his sense of humor and the playfulness in his art. With the birth of his daughter Nina in 1945, he started including her name hidden in many of his highly circulated drawings. After he decided to stop what he called the “harmless insanity” of camouflaging her name is his cartoons, The New York Times was inundated with letters demanding he continue the practice, and it became a pop culture phenomenon in itself. In the 1999 animated Disney film Fantasia 2000, a segment inspired by Hirschfeld’s work includes a hidden “NINA” in a tube of toothpaste.


Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Joseph Stalin, 1946, pencil and gouache on paper, published for the cover of The American Mercury Magazine January 1946, 15.5″ x 11″.
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Joseph Stalin, 1946, pencil and gouache on paper, published for the cover of The American Mercury Magazine January 1946, 15.5″ x 11″.
Estimate: $2,000–$4,000
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), General Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1945, gouache, pencil, and ink on paper, published for the cover of The American Mercury Magazine, July 1, 1945, 15.25″ x 10.75″.
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), General Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1945, gouache, pencil, and ink on paper, published for the cover of The American Mercury Magazine, July 1, 1945, 15.25″ x 10.75″.
Estimate: $2,000–$4,000

He was commissioned to design the 1991 USPS stamp collection featuring American comedians, including a favorite subject of his, the comic pair Laurel and Hardy. This month’s collection includes a lithograph depicting the duo, as well as a number of other prints, ink drawings, and rare gouache portrayals of political figures. The gouaches were created as cover illustrations for Colliers and American Mercury Magazine, and the figures include Dwight Eisenhower, Josef Stalin, Harry Truman, Joseph McCarthy, and others. Join us on May 17th to bid on these exclusive pieces.


Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), <em>Laurel and Hardy</em>, lithograph in colors, 25″ x 18.5″.
Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Laurel and Hardy, lithograph in colors, 25″ x 18.5″.
Estimate: $500–$700
(lot of 2) Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), <em>Great American Songwriters</em> and <em>Great American Singers</em>, lithographs, (each): 18.75″ x 18.5″.
(lot of 2) Al Hirschfeld (American, 1903–2003), Great American Songwriters and Great American Singers, lithographs, each: 18.75″ x 18.5″.
Estimate: $600–$900

Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Important Summer Fine Art Sale Highlights

Clars is excited to present our Important Summer Fine Art Sale bursting with exceptional artwork from iconic creators on June 20th.

  • Auction
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Hernando Ruiz Ocampo

Ocampo developed a singular style that expressed the Filipino experience through emotive color, form, and abstraction.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

One of our featured artists this April is German-born American sculptor, Adolph Alexander Weinman. Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.


Weinman immigrated to the United States at age 14 and studied art at Cooper Union and the Art Students League of New York — where he was influenced by the work of Augustus Saint-Gaudens. Weinman later assisted several notable sculptors in their studios, including Daniel Chester French, the sculptor of the Lincoln Memorial monument in Washington, D.C. French’s impact on Weinman’s style is apparent in many of his public works, including his own statue of Lincoln at the Kentucky State Capitol, and in Neo-Classical decorative sculptures like Fountain of the Centaurs, located at the Missouri State Capitol.


Adolph Alexander Weinman (American, 1870–1952), Untitled (Nude Dancer with Hoop), 1922, bronze sculpture, 19″h.
Adolph Alexander Weinman (American, 1870–1952), Untitled (Nude Dancer with Hoop), 1922, bronze sculpture, 19″h.
Estimate: $15,000–$20,000

Weinman is also known for his architectural sculptures, some of which grace the facades of the most prominent buildings in Washington, D.C. Weinman designed and sculpted the pediment scenes on both the National Archives Building and the Jefferson Memorial, with the latter featuring an iconic portrayal of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Weinman is remembered as a celebrated medalist as well. His designs on the Mercury dime and Walking Liberty half dollar circulated in the early 20th century and were later used on commemorative coins. Weinman’s skill in metallurgy can be seen in the bronze sculpture in the April sale, a nude female figure dancing with a hoop. The hoop motif was popular for bronze statuettes during the Art Deco period, but Weinman added his own Neo-Classical touch by making the figure nude — with great concentration on anatomy — as opposed to the flapper-like depictions of the era.

Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Important Summer Fine Art Sale Highlights

Clars is excited to present our Important Summer Fine Art Sale bursting with exceptional artwork from iconic creators on June 20th.

  • Auction
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Hernando Ruiz Ocampo

Ocampo developed a singular style that expressed the Filipino experience through emotive color, form, and abstraction.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Hernando Ruiz Ocampo

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

This March at Clars, we are privileged and honored to present a very important work by 1991 National Artist of the Philippines, Hernando Ruiz Ocampo.


Ocampo stands as an iconic artist in the Philippines, being a leader of modernist painting in the country during the first half of the twentieth century. As a painter who ushered in an era of creative exploration in the country, Ocampo developed a singular style that expressed the Filipino experience through emotive color, form, and abstraction.


Hernando Ruiz Ocampo (Filipino, 1911–1978), Mga Kiti, 1978, acrylic on tetoron, 35.5″ x 354.25″.
Hernando Ruiz Ocampo (Filipino, 1911–1978), Mga Kiti, 1978, acrylic on Tetoron, 35.5″ x 354.25″ (detail shot).
Estimate: $700,000–$1,000,000

Ocampo was born and raised in greater Manila in 1911 and studied both law and writing — becoming an accomplished poet and fiction writer before approaching the visual arts. His early painting career is marked by experimentation with modes of expression, including a series titled Luetica, for which his visceral depictions of human mortality earned him strong reactions upon exhibition.

After the devastation of World War II in the Philippines, progressive artists worked to reflect the hardships and realities of life. Ocampo and his colleagues, including fellow National Artists Vicente S. Manansala and Cesar Legaspi, inaugurated a movement of distinctly Filipino Neo-Realism, combining modernist abstraction with figurative subject matter.

Neo-Realists took their inspiration from the struggles of workers, family life, poverty, and the local landscape. Although one can detect the influence of prior and concurrent movements in Europe and the United States — including Cubism and Vorticism as well as Social Realism — the Neo-Realists’ work was categorically unique in its blend of the Filipino experience with modernist aesthetics. Out of the many talented artists in his circle, Ocampo favored the freedom that abstraction afforded him in his work; and as he gained confidence in his practice, it became more symbolic and less objective in nature.

Ocampo continued to delve further into abstraction as his career progressed. His close peer, Cesar Legaspi, was quoted speaking about Ocampo’s creative evolution, stating, “I think the impact of those paintings was needed then as the controversy between the moderns and the conservatives was going full blast and we had to have some kind of exemplar as to how far and how powerful a new kind of art could be.”

While Ocampo did create paintings that used abstraction while still forming a recognizable scene, such as the landscape Reaching for the Moon and the mother and child figures in Break of Day, his most well-known pieces are those that allow for open interpretation and push viewers to investigate their own subconscious. Here, the painter relies on formal elements to create a sensory experience. The principles of color and shape were fundamental to Ocampo’s work in the later years of his career. One can identify his personal connection to the color orange in many of his works, and he uses amorphous and organic shapes like tiles to form imposing structures — painstakingly faceted with vivid tones to achieve depth and form.


Hernando Ruiz Ocampo (Filipino, 1911–1978), <em>Mga Kiti</em>, 1978, acrylic on Tetoron, 35.5″ x 354.25″ (zoomed in shot).
Hernando Ruiz Ocampo, Mga Kiti (zoomed in shot).

The monumental work by Ocampo in our March sale, one of only two made by the artist in this size, is titled Mga Kiti, which can be taken as a reference to either duck embryos or mosquito larvae. Dating to 1978, the scroll-like painting, done in acrylic paint on Tetoron fabric, showcases a repeating pattern of similar forms that echo human figures, the bodies of birds, lotus pods, and cellular structures. The background — painted a deep red that graduates into lighter crimson — recalls blood, with the small circles sprinkled throughout suggesting blood cells. Yellow linework traces throughout the length of the painting in a style reminiscent of batik, a medium originating in the neighboring country of Indonesia, and further separates the areas of red, black, and orange like cells dividing.

The lines and colors seem to undulate, expand, and contract — like compartments of breathing lungs. Like in much of his previous work, Ocampo utilizes color, specifically in the spectrum of orange, and creates a mosaic-like composition. Although the piece was commissioned by patron, Ginny Jacinto, the idea of regeneration may have been close to Ocampo’s own heart during its creation; the artist was in his late sixties and dealing with multiple health issues. Mga Kiti was Ocampo’s final painting before his death in December of 1978. Its themes of renewal, movement, and creation seem to be a summation of his work — the balance between figuration and abstraction, and a pure expression of life itself. Mga Kiti serves as a grand testament to Ocampo’s talents as a master of his craft both in formal composition, with his uncanny ability to evoke tactility and sensoriality, and as a translator of ideas, emotion, and the creative force from which all art originates.


Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artists to Watch: California

With this inaugural auction, we take great pride in introducing ten esteemed artists who persistently enrich the tapestry of California art.

  • Auction
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Matt Gondek

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

A standout piece in our March Modern + Contemporary sale is this large acrylic on canvas painting by Los Angeles-based artist, Matt Gondek.


Gondek is known for colorful canvases with thick, bold lines depicting cartoon and comic book characters from the late 20th century, often exploding, melting, or in some way deconstructed through a darkly humorous lens.


Matt Gondek (American, b 1982), Rugrats, acrylic on canvas, 47.5″ x 71.5″.
Matt Gondek (American, b 1982), Rugrats, acrylic on canvas, 47.5″ x 71.5″.
Estimate: $10,000–$15,000

The painting at Clars this month will look familiar to millennial collectors; the scene shows the characters from the Nickelodeon cartoon show Rugrats in a state of fragmentation. Followers of Clars will remember the Gondek painting in our November 2023 sale depicting 1990s Warner Brothers characters, Pinky and the Brain, which sold at auction for $12,600.


Matt Gondek (American, b. 1982), Pinky and the Brain, 2016, acrylic on canvas, 48″ x 72″.
Matt Gondek (American, b. 1982), Pinky and the Brain, 2016, acrylic on canvas, 48″ x 72″.
Sold: $12,600

Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artists to Watch: California

With this inaugural auction, we take great pride in introducing ten esteemed artists who persistently enrich the tapestry of California art.

  • Auction
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Joan Brown

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

“How do I know when I’ve finished a painting? It’s when that element of surprise is there” (Joan Brown). This March at Clars we are proud to feature a work on paper and a print by one of the most well-loved modern artists of Bay Area origin.


Joan Brown (American, 1938–1990), Running at Ocean Beach, 1976, pencil and gouache on paper, 17.75″ x 24″.
Joan Brown (American, 1938–1990), Running at Ocean Beach, 1976, pencil and gouache on paper, 17.75″ x 24″.
Estimate: $10,000–$15,000

Joan Brown was born in San Francisco in 1938 and continued to work in the area for her entire life, creating paintings, sculptures, and works on paper that celebrated the city of San Francisco and its surroundings. Brown began her art education at the California School of Fine Arts (now the San Francisco Art Institute) where she began working with her mentor — fellow Bay Area icon, Elmer Bischoff — who she credited with encouraging her to focus on her own creative instincts and less on academic rules.

During her prolific career, Brown evolved stylistically from abstract expressionism to folk art-inspired figurative painting and became involved in the highly influential Bay Area Figurative Movement. Brown was married for a period to a fellow member of the movement, Manuel Neri, with whom she had a son who inspired much of her work during the 1960s. Brown also taught at several California universities during the 1960s, including the California School of Fine Arts, Mills College, and UC Berkeley.


Cucumber and Lemon
Joan Brown (American, 1938–1990), Cucumber and Lemon, 1965, oil on plywood board, 16.25″ x 15″.
Sold: $31,250

As she matured in her practiced, Brown included more symbolism in her paintings, including spiritual and New Age ideas. This interest led her to travel the world and gather inspiration from various religions and cultures — installing mosaic obelisks honoring these new influences. Brown tragically passed away while installing one of these obelisks at Sai Baba’s Eternal Heritage Museum in Puttaparthi, India. The works included in the March auction are a gouache and pencil on paper piece, titled Running at Ocean Beach, which depicts the artist jogging at the famous San Francisco seaside, and a woodcut/lithograph, titled Golden Gate, depicting the renowned bridge at sunset with a swimmer and boater in the blue bay waters.


Joan Brown (American, 1938–1990), <em>Golden Gate</em>, 1987, woodcut and lithograph, 37.5″ x 27″.
Joan Brown (American, 1938–1990), Golden Gate, 1987, woodcut and lithograph, 37.5″ x 27″.
Sold: $9,450

Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artists to Watch: California

With this inaugural auction, we take great pride in introducing ten esteemed artists who persistently enrich the tapestry of California art.

  • Auction
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Paul Sawyier

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

This January at Clars we are pleased to offer two paintings by American Impressionist, Paul Sawyier.


Sawyier was born in Ohio in 1865 and raised in Frankfort, Kentucky. He traveled first to The McMicken School of Design (now the Art Academy of Cincinnati) to study under Frank Duveneck, and later to New York to study under William Merritt Chase at the Arts Students League of New York.


Paul Sawyier (American, 1865–1917), Garden with Fountain, oil on panel, signed. Panel: 20″ x 24″. Provenance: Estate of Philip F. Schaefer/Fleishmann (New York).
Paul Sawyier (American, 1865–1917), Garden with Fountain, oil on panel, signed. Panel: 20″ x 24″. Provenance: Estate of Philip F. Schaefer/Fleishmann (New York).
Sold: $49,125

Early in his career, Sawyier excelled in portraiture, painting the likenesses of well-known figures in his community. Although he sometimes included figures in his subsequent paintings, they mostly focused on rural landscapes. Known primarily for his watercolor depictions of scenery in Kentucky and New York, Sawyier gained enough recognition in art circles to exhibit work at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893.


Paul Sawyier (American, 1865–1917), Fountain and Rose Garden, oil on panel, signed. Panel: 24″ x 20″. Provenance: Estate of Philip F. Schaefer/Fleishmann (New York).
Paul Sawyier (American, 1865–1917), Fountain and Rose Garden, oil on panel, signed. Panel: 24″ x 20″. Provenance: Estate of Philip F. Schaefer/Fleishmann (New York).
Sold: $28,820

After his professional painting career ended, Sawyier retired to a houseboat in the New York Catskills. He was known to paint in the area en plein air, both in oils and watercolor. Sawyier is notable not only for being one of the only painters from Kentucky working in the Impressionist style during the turn of the century, but also for his ability to capture the atmosphere and tranquility of his surroundings. Although distinctly impressionistic, Sawyier’s work does retain aspects of Realism and Romanticism, perhaps preserved from his years studying in arts academies. Sawyier remains one of Kentucky’s most celebrated artists, and his work is collected in several large museums nationwide.


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Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Important Summer Fine Art Sale Highlights

Clars is excited to present our Important Summer Fine Art Sale bursting with exceptional artwork from iconic creators on June 20th.

  • Auction
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: William T. Wiley

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

A notable work in our October Collections Auction is a large print by funk artist, William T. Wiley. Wiley began his artistic studies at the California School of Fine Arts (now the San Francisco Art Institute), and later taught at U.C. Davis alongside artists Roy DeForest and Robert Arneson.


As an associate of the Funk Art movement, Wiley was a purveyor of using unconventional materials, eschewing the Minimalist trend and embracing chaos. He often described himself as a sort of spiritual descendent of Marcel Duchamp, building upon the Dadaist tradition of absurdity. One of Wiley’s graduate students was Bruce Nauman, who would go on to become one of the biggest names in American Conceptual art. Nauman remembered Wiley as keeping his studio open at all hours for students. In doing this, young artists could practice their craft and work through creative blocks.


William T. Wiley, (American, 1937–2021), Mr. Bones, 1989, woodcut with hand coloring, 74&#8243 x 23&#8243.
William T. Wiley, (American, 1937–2021), Mr. Bones, 1989, woodcut with hand coloring, 74″ x 23″.
Estimate: $3,000–$5,000

Wiley’s work has been the subject of major exhibitions, including showings at the 1980 Venice Biennial, the de Young Museum, and a retrospective at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C. The monumental woodcut print featured this month is titled Mr. Bones, and features hand coloring by the artist.

The piece demonstrates Wiley’s eclectic visual style, including sketchy, movement-heavy lines and text interspersed throughout, with a humorous, surrealist-inspired subject. Wiley was known for wearing blue jeans and cowboy boots around his Marin County home, a look that is replicated on the aforementioned character of Mr. Bones. His peers and neighbors lovingly referred to the artist as a frontiersman for his choices in wardrobe, but within the artistic community of the San Francisco Bay Area he was exactly that — a pioneer of experimentation.


Read More

Artist Spotlight: Salvador Dalí

Dalí established himself as perhaps the most celebrated of the Surrealist painters, famous for both his instantly recognizable visual style and for his eccentric personality and antics.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Roy Lichtenstein

Lichtenstein was one of the most prominent figures of the Pop Art movement — most known for his comic strip-inspired paintings, prints, and sculptures.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern + Contemporary

Artist Spotlight: Aaron Douglas

Douglas is widely known for the murals he was commissioned to paint in several high-profile locations, including several Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Modern Art

Artist Spotlight: Albert Hirschfeld

Albert Hirschfeld — a master caricaturist — is known for his depictions of twentieth-century pop culture icons.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artist Spotlight: Adolph Alexander Weinman

Weinman’s work embraces both the storied past of his influences and predecessors as well as the developing aesthetic of the modern era.

  • Artist Spotlight
  • Fine Art

Artists to Watch: California

With this inaugural auction, we take great pride in introducing ten esteemed artists who persistently enrich the tapestry of California art.

  • Auction
  • Modern + Contemporary