Supplied, 10 November 2023

With auctioneer Anita Archer on the podium in front of a packed audience in Cooee Art Leven’s Redfern Showroom, it took only two hours to sell 100% of the lots by number (129% by value) with a total sale value $2,250,000 (incl. BP).

Top price at the Cooee Art auction of the Rod Menzies Estate’s Indigenous Art Collection Part I in Sydney on 8 November 2023 was achieved by the cover lot Emily Kame Kngwarreye’s Earth’s Creation II (Lot 29 ), which sold for $700,000.


The cover lot, Emily Kame Kngwarreye’s Earth’s Creation II (Lot 29 ), a magnificent maelstrom in swirling blue, white and burgundy, was painted during the same workshop as Earth’s Creation I which still holds the highest record for a work by Australian female artist at public auction, having sold at Cooee Art for $2.1 million in 2017. Though less than half the size of that monumental masterpiece, Earth’s Creation II achieved $700,000.

Other highlights of the sale included three additional works painted by Kngwarreye in 1994: a black and white version of her Bush Yam series (Lot 31 ), $80,000;, a brooding depiction of her country Alhakere $55,000 (Lot 47 ); and a lovely cascade of gold and white linear dotting simply entitled My Country $110,000 (Lot 40 ). Maggie Napangardi Watson’s masterpiece Digging Stick Dreaming, (Lot 28 ), sold for $100,000; while two works by the founder of the East Kimberley painting movement Rover Thomas also sold well. Cyclone Tracy- Willy Willy, (Lot 39 ) achieved $55,000, and Bullock Hide Story, (Lot 35 ), sold for $70,000.

Cooee Art will sell Part II of the Indigenous Art Collection from the Rod Menzies Estate, in March 2024.

All prices shown are hammer prices, unless otherwise indicated.

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