Mark Rothko’s “Untitled (Rust, Blacks on Plum)” is headed to auction next month and could fetch as much as $45 million.
Architect Francois de Menil, an heir to the Schlumberger oil fortune, and his wife Susan, are the sellers. The painting will be among the stars of Christie’s evening sale of postwar and contemporary art on Nov. 15, joining a parade of trophies that include the late “Si” Newhouse’s Francis Bacon and Joe Lewis’s David Hockney, estimated at $80 million.
Rothko painted the dark 5-by-5-foot square in 1962, following his Seagram murals and before the Rothko Chapel commission. It depicts two black rectangles and a reddish one on an electric-purple background.
“There are good Rothkos and there are great Rothkos,” said Alex Rotter, Christie’s chairman of postwar and contemporary art. “This Rothko floats.”
Read more starting at ‘Francois de Menil is a grandson of Conrad Schlumberger,’ at…
Schlumberger Heir Is Selling a Rothko That’s So Good It ‘Floats’