Following on from the successful first edition last year, on the 15th February, Coco de Mer and Sotheby’s staged their second erotic auction – Passion & Desire.
Artists throughout history have been drawn to the human form. In the second edition of Sotheby’s Erotic: Passion & Desire sale, Pre-Columbian sculpture will be paired with Picasso works on paper; masters of photography from Man Ray to Rankin will be set against 19th century marbles and antique reliefs; Gustav Klimt’s sensual eroticism will jostle with Keith Vaughn’s unrestricted erotic fantasies; each work charting the history of the subject from antiquity to modern day.
The exhibition in Sotheby’s New Bond Street galleries, on public view from 7 – 15 February, takes viewers on an art historical journey. Comprising 90 lots from Man Ray to Joè Descamps, Robert Mapplethorpe to Tracy Emin and many others with a combined pre-sale low estimate of £3.8 million, this year’s auction will be accompanied by an online sale, presenting an even wider range across continents and centuries. Erotic Art Online will be open for bidding from 2 – 16 February and includes prints, photographs, paintings, sculpture, drawings, Asian works of art and film posters.
This year, Coco de Mer introduces artist and fashion photographer Rankin, who is synonymous with portraiture, fashion and the depiction of popular culture: he is widely held to be one of the most renowned fashion and portrait photographers in the world. He’s particularly well known for his work on the human form and three of his evocative portraits will appear in the auctions. These are: And God Created Eva II, 2003, Pin Me Up, 2012 and Stefani Reclining, 2016.
Coinciding with London Fashion Week, the auction was also an occasion to showcase a film created by The Full Service, together with the iconic Coco de Mer. The Full Service, Rankin’s one-stop-shop creative agency, and Coco de Mer’s long standing collaboration continues, after many previous projects like Christmas content, films, stills, a project with the V&A; they even worked with Pamela Anderson, who became the brand ambassador.
Coco de Mer CEO, Lucy Litwack:
The theme of Erotic: Passion and Desire seems custom made for us. It’s everything we work, design and create for, so we simply had to get involved. I’m thrilled with the result, it’s a work of art in itself!
The film is a nod to London Fashion Week and an artistic endeavor to salute the pieces on display. The Full Service team made sure that the real star of the show is the artwork. Throughout the film, one can spot some seminal pieces, teasingly placed in an abstract style to draw you in and make you look just that little bit closer.
Each piece in the auction has contributed to the erotic revolution, exposing the issues surrounding sex to encourage discussion and discovery. The
film has been made to honor this, touching on why erotic art is still prevalent today.