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Spring Shows Highlight Duane Hanson Realist Sculptures

Manhattan dealer Christophe Van de Weghe, who has represented the estate of hyperrealist sculptor Duane Hanson (1925–96) since early 2006, is exhibiting seven works by the artist—five in his Chelsea gallery and two in his Madison Avenue gallery—through May 22, at prices averaging $1.2 million per piece.

NEW YORK—Manhattan dealer Christophe Van de Weghe, who has represented the estate of hyperrealist sculptor Duane Hanson (1925–96) since early 2006, is exhibiting seven works by the artist—five in his Chelsea gallery and two in his Madison Avenue gallery—through May 22, at prices averaging $1.2 million per piece. Other sculptures from the Hanson estate start at $550,000/650,000. Van de Weghe told ARTnewsletter that primary-market prices for the artist’s work are higher than those at auction.

The top price for a work by the artist at auction is $343,500, paid for the sculpture Housewife (Homemaker), 1969–70, at Christie’s in May 2003 (estimate: $300,000/400,000). Other top prices include $336,000, paid for the six-foot-tall polychromed bronze Policeman, 1993, at Christie’s in May 2007 (estimate: $180,000/220,000), and $314,000, paid for the life-size bronze Security Guard, 1990, at Christie’s in November 2001 (estimate: $150,000/200,000).

The estate has a limited number of artworks, comprising 35 sculptures as well as a small number of paintings and preparatory photographs Hanson took of his models. A selection of Hanson’s sculptures and photographs were on view at the Boca Raton Museum of Art through the 26th of this month. Five years ago, the Laurence Miller Gallery, New York, exhibited 40 Polaroid photographs that Hanson took as studies for his sculptures. According to gallery director Vicki Harris, at that time the price range for the photographs was $6,000/18,000. Van de Weghe said he does not work with the artist’s paintings or photographs.

Hanson’s work has drawn international interest as well. Shortly after the artist’s death, in 1996, British collector Charles Saatchi purchased 15 works by Hanson, both through dealers and directly from Hanson’s family, and they have been exhibited in his London gallery ever since.

Van de Weghe told ARTnewsletter he acquired seven of those pieces—most of which were from the “Tourist” series from Saatchi. These are included in the works now offered for sale.

Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin, Paris, will be showing seven sculptures by Hanson, dating from the late 1980s to the mid-1990s, in an exhibition titled “Lost Illusions” May 23–July 11. Prices for the pieces in the show range from $425,000 to $1.6 million, according to gallery exhibition manager Carole Wagemans.

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