May 22, 2016


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Lot 88: Ed Moses

Lot 88: Ed Moses


Graphite, gouache, and felt-tip marker on paper cutout relief on illustration board in artist's frame
Signed "EMS" in graphite lower right composition; dated "63" lower right board; inscribed in graphite frame verso "Personally packaged + guaranteed/To keep dust in-in + dust out-out/by EMS/1966/P.S. however picture made in/1963 not to be confused./all this considered writing for/'Pat.'"
Composition: 6.25" x 6.875"; Board (vis.): 7.75" x 11.25"; Frame: 13.75" x 17.25"
LAMA would like to thank the artist for his assistance in cataloguing this work
Provenance: Private Collection, California (acquired directly from the artist, 1966)
Estimate: $7,000 - $10,000
Price Realized: $18,750
Inventory Id: 22087

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Ed Moses (b. 1926) has been a major figure in the Los Angeles art world for nearly sixty years. Along with Ed Ruscha, Billy Al Bengston, Ed Kienholz, Craig Kauffman, and others, Moses was a member of the group of artists known as the Cool School, whose exhibitions at the legendary Ferus Gallery in the late 1950s and early '60s virtually created the Los Angeles art scene.

Experimentation is the keynote of Moses's artistic career. Early on, he was drawn to abstract expressionism, but in the decades since he has explored semi-figurative paintings, patterns, color field techniques, geometric abstraction, and other devices. Moses describes his art as that of discovery, and his enduring concerns have been for the materials, surfaces, and process of art-making.

The untitled graphite and gouache on paper construction in this auction is part of a series inspired by Swedish pop-up greeting cards. The work stems from early in the artist's career, a period Moses spent working in abstracted floral forms. "I never know when that moment will happen when I realize that I have something special," Moses has said. "But when it does, it can come at me with such surprise—that is a beautiful thing."

Yau, John. Ed Moses: A Retrospective of the Paintings and Drawings, 1951-1996. Los Angeles: Museum of Contemporary Art, 1996. Print.