Ripley Auctions

Lot 132

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Description: Nancy Graves
(American, 1940-1995)
Fracture I, 1982
oil on linen canvas
signed and titled verso.

Provenance: M. Knoedler Zurich AG.

Biography from the archives of AskArt:
A sculptor of animals and American Indian shamanistic objects, filmmaker, and painter, Nancy Graves had a highly successful and varied career, primarily in New York City. In her abstract work, she united her interest in anthropology, totemic objects, cartography, and biomorphic shapes.

She was born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and became a graduate of Vassar College in 1961 and then Yale University's School of Art and Architecture. Graves won a Fulbright-Hayes Fellowship for painting, allowing her to spend a year in Paris in 1964-65. In the next few years, she traveled in North Africa and the Near East and lived and worked in Florence, Italy where she did her first signature work, which was sculptures of life-size Bactrian camels.

In 1966, she moved to New York City and further experimented with ways to produced these sculptures by building wood and steel armatures, covering them with skins of animal embryos, stuffing the skins with polyurethane to form humps, and tinting the skins with oil paints.

In 1968, she had her first New York one-woman show at the Graham Gallery followed by her second one-woman show at the Whitney Museum in 1969. Both exhibitions featured her camels.

In 1972 at the Philadelphia Institute of Contemporary Art, she made sculpture suggestive of Indian objects such as bones, skins, and feathers and added also steel rods to this motif for other exhibitions.

As a filmmaker, she has had showings in film festivals in London, New York, and Boston.

Charlotte Rubinstein, "American Women Artists"

36 1/2" x 20" (image), 37 1/2"H x 21 1/4"W (frame).

  • Dimensions: 36 1/2" x 20" (image), 37 1/2"H x 21 1/4"W (frame).
  • Artist Name: Nancy Graves
  • Medium: oil on linen canvas

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September 26, 2020, 11:00 AM EST

Indianapolis, IN, US

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