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Thursday, May 17, 2007

A Monkey Of Some Different Colors

If you think that it was nuts that Coolmore paid $16 million for The Green Monkey, take a look at this.

This baby, entitled "White Center (Yellow, Pink and Lavender on Rose)," sold for $72.8 million dollars at Sotheby's on Tuesday night, the highest price ever for a work of art produced after World War II. It's a Mark Rothko, and it was sold by David Rockefeller, who bought the painting for less than $10,000 in 1960. The auction house, which collects a 20% commission on the first $500,000, and 12% on the rest (the price includes commission), did some heavy marketing of the piece - they even let prospective buyers hang it in their homes to try it on. Kinda like the under tack shows, I guess.

I very much enjoy seeing art, but I personally prefer my paintings to include people, places, or things. Slop some colors on the canvas, and I just don't get it. I probably wouldn't have bought this if I saw it for ten bucks at a yard sale. And what the hell is the buyer going to do with this anyway? Other than re-sell it for twice as much in 10 years? At least you could ride The Green Monkey, feed him carrots, and, I dunno, maybe just have a friend....or maybe even more....

Anyway, if things don't work out with The Green Monkey, here's a way they can get their money back. They can stuff him, stick him up on a canvas, and slop some paint on him. Then he can be "White Stockings (Yellow, Pink and Lavender Monkey on Horse)." They should be able to get at least $16 million for that.


Valerie Grash said...

Ah, once again an artistic gem of an idea already taken…Robert Rauschenberg stuffed and mounted a goat on his mixed media piece “Monogram” (1955), but you gotta go to Sweden to see it (or look here:

The Dadist appeal of a horse called The Green Monkey is fabulous, however! :)

Alan Mann said...

Valerie - Ha ha, that's awesome, thanks for the link!

Anonymous said...

That's awesome, Alan. It gives me hope that a similar painting in our house that we paid $2500 for will some day enable us to retire!