Sotheby’s, 34-35 New Bond Street, London W1,
Exhibition open 1–10 November 2016
Auctions 10 & 11 November 2016
Wow! Such a simple word sums up my first and lasting impression of these pieces being auctioned from Bowie’s personal art collection. Personal is the key word in describing everything because they were his choice – he responded at some level to each of these works whether they were 20th Century British Masters, Contemporary African Art or examples of German Expressionism. Scottish artists and Contemporary artists feature too, including the spin painting created jointly with Damien Hirst. There is even a Tintoretto.
Then there is the large group of Memphis Milano pieces whose designs perfectly resounded with Bowie. Colour, even if minimal, certainly appears to be a unifying factor across the whole collection. He said that he was attracted to “those who transgressed the norm, who defied convention, whether in painting or in music or anything”. This is certainly obvious and it underlines perfectly the fact that he was a serious and knowledgeable collector and that his taste like his music is both thought-provoking and highly enjoyable.