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SF21: The Lenkiewicz Foundation Collection

Robert O Lenkiewicz [1941-2002] - The Masterpiece; Plymouth Mourning Over Its Unfortunates, 1974,

Auction Lot SF21/44

Robert O Lenkiewicz [1941-2002] - The Masterpiece; Plymouth Mourning over its Unfortunates, 1974,- Project 6. Diogenes Con Show & the Masterpiece Museum oil on canvas, 211 x 274cm Exhibited. The Painter with Women (Retrospective Section), ICC Birmingham, 1994. Plymouth City Museum Retrospective, 1997. Wolverhampton Art Gallery, A Retrospective, 1998. Plymouth City Museum & Art Gallery, 2009. Royal West of England Academy, Bristol 2011. Royal William Yard, Plymouth, 2012. Spinnerei, Leipzig, and Nuremberg, Germany, 2013. Lenkiewicz would have witnessed similar scenes in many of the 'dosses' or disused warehouses he commandeered to house vagrants in the late 60s and early 70s, who called them 'The Cowboys' Holiday Inns'. The town crier or 'bellman', seen in traditional garb, was also a city's official ale taster, who would certify the brew as fit for consumption Throughout his life Lenkiewicz criticised the attitudes of breweries and city officials who licensed innumerable premises in Plymouth's historic Barbican area. in one famous spat with the council, Lenkiewicz erected street signs in the narrow lane next to his gallery which was frequently used by Barbican drinkers as an open-air toilet. When the council objected to the phrase 'Piss and Puke Lane', Lenkiewicz switched to a variety of other languages, both ancient and modern. The artist took great pleasure in exposing the hypocrisy of a city galvanised by fear of causing public offense by the scholarly use of language but apparently incapable of action to prevent fouling of the lane. The centrepiece of the so-called 'The Masterpiece Museum', part of the ironic Project Paintings Designed to Make Money, it was shown in 1975, alongside the Diogenes Con Show. The exhibition notes claim the work is by a deceased painter and state: 'The Masterpiece; or, Plymouth mourning over its unfortunates. Value? Priceless. This complex work conceals a large amount of allegorical symbol; suffice it to say that what is known of its underlying meaning covers the following associations: the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus; the Studio, by Gustave Courbet; social art at its worst; the mythology of sleep, etc.'.

Robert O Lenkiewicz [1941-2002] - The Masterpiece; Plymouth Mourning Over Its Unfortunates, 1974, (SF21/44) offered in our Specialist Fine Art Auction starting on 11th September 2018 at our salerooms in Exeter, Devon.

Lot Description

Robert O Lenkiewicz [1941-2002] - The Masterpiece; Plymouth Mourning over its Unfortunates, 1974,- Project 6. Diogenes Con Show & the Masterpiece Museum oil on canvas, 211 x 274cm Exhibited. The Painter with Women (Retrospective Section), ICC Birmingham, 1994. Plymouth City Museum Retrospective, 1997. Wolverhampton Art Gallery, A Retrospective, 1998. Plymouth City Museum & Art Gallery, 2009. Royal West of England Academy, Bristol 2011. Royal William Yard, Plymouth, 2012. Spinnerei, Leipzig, and Nuremberg, Germany, 2013. Lenkiewicz would have witnessed similar scenes in many of the 'dosses' or disused warehouses he commandeered to house vagrants in the late 60s and early 70s, who called them 'The Cowboys' Holiday Inns'. The town crier or 'bellman', seen in traditional garb, was also a city's official ale taster, who would certify the brew as fit for consumption Throughout his life Lenkiewicz criticised the attitudes of breweries and city officials who licensed innumerable premises in Plymouth's historic Barbican area. in one famous spat with the council, Lenkiewicz erected street signs in the narrow lane next to his gallery which was frequently used by Barbican drinkers as an open-air toilet. When the council objected to the phrase 'Piss and Puke Lane', Lenkiewicz switched to a variety of other languages, both ancient and modern. The artist took great pleasure in exposing the hypocrisy of a city galvanised by fear of causing public offense by the scholarly use of language but apparently incapable of action to prevent fouling of the lane. The centrepiece of the so-called 'The Masterpiece Museum', part of the ironic Project Paintings Designed to Make Money, it was shown in 1975, alongside the Diogenes Con Show. The exhibition notes claim the work is by a deceased painter and state: 'The Masterpiece; or, Plymouth mourning over its unfortunates. Value? Priceless. This complex work conceals a large amount of allegorical symbol; suffice it to say that what is known of its underlying meaning covers the following associations: the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus; the Studio, by Gustave Courbet; social art at its worst; the mythology of sleep, etc.'.

This lot is subject to Droit de Suite.

Estimate

£15,000 - £20,000

Department

Pictures

Sale Information

SF21: The Lenkiewicz Foundation Collection
Tuesday, 11th September 2018
Okehampton Street, Exeter

Contact

For more information about this particular auction lot, please contact:-

Daniel GoddardDaniel Goddard


Martin ScadgellMartin Scadgell


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