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November 02, 2011

Takashi Murakami’s Christie’s Sale

By Rachel Wolff | Art

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© Takashi Murkami

Not even a month after its hyper successful Ben Stiller–helmed Artists for Haiti auction, which raised $13.7 million for various organizations, Christie’s is at it again with an equally star-studded charity sale. Japanese neo-Pop maestro Takashi Murakami has taken the reins this time, collecting standout artworks from friends and colleagues to be sold to benefit those impacted by last March’s Tohoku-Pacific earthquake and tsunami that devastated the artist’s homeland, as well as by the persisting Fukushima nuclear disaster. The pieces hitting the block range from blue-chip icons (a crumpled-foil tableaux by Anselm Reyle, expected to sell for $30,000; Damien Hirst’s Love-In, a heart-shaped painting studded with butterflies and priced at $600,000) to affecting renderings by fellow Japanese artists that seem to capture the chaos and horror of the event itself. Murakami has, of course, made several personal contributions, including New Day: Kaikai and Kiki, Faces All-Over, a 2011 acrylic-and-platinum leaf painting in which manga-esque faces of horror, bemusement and disdain rest atop a field of uniformly smiling flowers. It is expected to sell for about $500,000. Artists for Japan; viewing Nov. 4–8, auction Nov. 9 at 9:30 A.M. at 20 Rockefeller Plaza, New York; christies.com.

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