The Allure of Atsuko Tanaka

Brooke Friedman

I could not be more excited to have an outstanding piece by female, Japanese avant-garde artist, Atsuko Tanaka, headline our December 14th auction.

A member of the highly acclaimed Gutai Art Association (click here for more information on the Gutai Art Association) she was best known for her Neo-Dada Electric Dress (1956) a dress constructed of hundreds of light-bulbs painted in primary colors.  From the late 1950s onwards, Tanaka painted a series of works made by placing the canvas on the floor and working around it in the style of Jackson Pollack.  She repeatedly painted colorful circles and amorphous forms joined by sinuous lines reminiscent of Electric Dress.   Lot 1005, Untitled Abstract, 1963, is a perfect example of this stage of the artist’s career.  In addition, the piece has had one owner, an art patron in Baltimore, and was previously exhibited in the Minami Gallery in Tokyo. It is beyond exceptional.

Electric Dress, 1956
Photographic documentation of performance

Following her death in 2005 at the age of 74, Tanaka has received more well deserved  acclaim, but she remains relatively unknown in the United States.  Her work can be found in a number of important collections including the Museum of Modern Art in New York City and she had several exhibits in both Japan and abroad including the Kyoto National Museum of Modern Art, and New York galleries, Paula Cooper and Grey Art Gallery.  In line with current collecting and acquisition trends, Alex Cooper looks forward to continuing to showcase the work of noteworthy female artists.

For more information on lot 1005 from the December 14th Gallery Auction, click here. To see the all of the phenomenal lots from the December 14th Gallery Auction, click here.

Kathleen Hamill
Director, Modern & Contemporary Art
410.828.4838 x 108

Discovery Art Auction

Our online-only art discovery auction commences Friday, April 14 at 3:00 pm, and closes Monday, April 24 at 7:00 pm.  The auction includes assorted paintings, prints, watercolors and drawings from an array of different artists. With all pieces starting at just $20.00 this sale has something for everyone, from the first time buyer or the […]

April 18, 2017