Robert Mapplethorpe, ‘Shell and Crystal’, 1986-printed 1990, Phillips

Photographs from the Collection of Jeffrey M. Kaplan, Washington, D.C.

From the Catalogue:
About the Collector:
With a life-long passion for collecting, spurred by an intense, intellectual curiosity for art, Jeffrey M. Kaplan’s collection transcends classification and speaks to his devotion to all things cultural. Driven by an innate interest in learning about different cultures and ways of life, the photographs in his collection illustrate key moments and movements throughout the history of the medium, unified by the overarching theme of one man’s collecting journey.

The photographs on offer, lots 271-286, include works by leaders in the field, thus demonstrating Kaplan’s deep knowledge and keen awareness of the medium. From Alfred Stieglitz, and his selections for Camera Work, to Ansel Adams and Berenice Abbott, the classic is balanced by the contemporary with an equally impressive selection of works by Robert Mapplethorpe, Alec Soth and Robert Polidori. Kaplan’s particular affinity for Mapplethorpe is evident in the six lots on offer which show the photographer’s incredible depth and include the stunning dye transfer print, Flowers in Vase; the iconic photograph of Thomas that was selected by Patti Smith to grace the cover of Robert Mapplethorpe, her 1987 book on the photographer; and Wheat, a still-life that shows a masterful range of tonality.

This diverse selection reflects Kaplan’s constant interest in acquiring works that peaked his intellect, while offering the thrill that drives the most devoted of collectors.
Courtesy of Phillips

Signature: Signed, dated by Michael Ward Stout, Executor, in ink, titled, dated and numbered 7/10 in an unidentified hand in ink, Estate copyright credit reproduction limitation stamp on the reverse of the flush-mount.

Weinstein Gallery, Minneapolis

About Robert Mapplethorpe

In the 1970s, Robert Mapplethorpe and musician, poet, and artist Patti Smith lived together in New York’s infamous Chelsea Hotel where he started shooting Polaroids to use in his collages. Drawn to photography, Mapplethorpe got a Hasselblad medium-format camera and began taking pictures of his friends and acquaintances—artists, musicians, socialites, pornographic film stars, and members of the gay S & M underground. Despite his shocking content, Mapplethorpe was a formalist, interested in composition, color, texture, balance, and, most of all, beauty. In the 1980s, he concentrated on studio photography, specifically nudes, flowers, and formal portraits that are considerably more refined than his earlier work. After Mapplethorpe died from an AIDS-related illness, his work precipitated national controversy when it was included in “The Perfect Moment,” a traveling exhibition funded by the National Endowment for the Arts.

American, 1946-1989, Queens, New York, based in New York, New York