Frank Stella’s ‘Abra I’ to Lead at Christie’s Post-War to Present Sale
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Frank Stella’s ‘Abra I’ to Lead at Christie’s Post-War to Present Sale

By Casey Farmer
Fri, Sep 29, 2023 8:36amGrey Clock 2 min

More than 280 modern and contemporary artworks will be up for sale Friday at Christie’s Post-War to Present auction in New York.

The live sale, which will be held at Christie’s Rockefeller Center sale room, has a low estimate of more than US$27 million and will be led by Frank Stella’s Abra I, 1968, which is estimated to fetch between US$1.2 million and US$1.8 million, according to a news release from Christie’s.

Abra I is a fantastic example by Stella, a large-scale canvas from the protractor series,” says head of sale Julian Ehrlich. “It engages so many crucial aspects of his practice, including scale, geometry and colour, and has appeal to established post-war collectors and others who are just coming to historical art.”

Ehrlich, who has overseen the semiannual Post-War to Present sale since its first March 2022 auction, says his goal in curating the sale was to “assemble a thoughtful and dynamic auction” with works from both popular and lesser-known artists.

“With Post-War to Present, we really have a unique opportunity to share new artistic narratives at auction. It’s a joy to highlight new artists or artists who have been overlooked historically and be a part of that conversation in a larger art world context,” he says.

Joe Overstreet’s ‘Untitled’, 1970
Christie’s

Works from a number of female artists who were pioneers of post-war abstract painting, including Helen Frankenthaler, Lynne Drexler, and Hedda Sterne, will be included. The auction will also include pieces from a group of Black artists from the 1960s to present day, including Noah Purifoy, Jack Whitten, and David Hammons, in addition to a Christie’s debut from Joe Overstreet (Untitled, 1970) and an auction debut from Rick Lowe (Untitled, 2021).

“The story of art is necessarily diverse,” Ehrlich says. “The sale itself is broad, with more than 280 works this season, and it has been fun to think through artists inside and outside of the canon that we can put forward as highlights of the auction.”

In addition to Abra I, other top lots include Tom Wesselmann’s Seascape #29, 1967, (with an estimate between US$800,000 and US$1.2 million); Keith Haring’s Andy Mouse, 1986, (also with an estimate between US$800,000 and US$1.2 million); and Jack Whitten’s Garden in Bessemer, 1986 (with an estimate between US$700,000 andUS$1 million).

“I think of the Post-War to Present sale as being especially dynamic … in the best case, even for someone deeply embedded in the market, there should be works which surprise and delight and are unexpected, as well as celebrated market-darlings and art-historical greats,” Ehrlich says.



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The Top 10 highest paid CEOs of the ASX 200 revealed

Along with pay rates, the latest report from the ACSI shows bonuses are no longer based on exceptional results

By Bronwyn Allen
Tue, Jul 23, 2024 2 min

The CEOs of the ASX 200 were paid a little less in FY23 compared to the year before, but bonuses appear to have become the norm rather than a reward for outstanding results, according to the Australia Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI). ACSI has released its 23rd annual report documenting the CEOs’ realised pay, which combines base salaries, bonuses and other incentives.

The highest-paid CEO among Australian-domiciled ASX 200 companies in FY23 was Greg Goodman of Goodman Group, with realised pay of $27.34 million. Goodman Group is the ASX 200’s largest real estate investment trust (REIT) with a global portfolio of $80.5 billion in assets. The highest-paid CEO among foreign-domiciled ASX 200 companies was Mick Farrell of ResMed with realised pay of $47.58 million. ResMed manufactures CPAP machines to treat sleep apnoea.

The realised pay for the CEOs of the largest 100 companies by market capitalisation fell marginally from a median of $3.93 million in FY22 to $3.87 million in FY23. This is the lowest median in the 10 years since ACSI began basing its report on realised pay data. The median realised pay for the CEOs of the next largest 100 companies also fell from $2.1million to $1.95 million.

However, 192 of the ASX 200 CEOs took home a bonus, and Ed John, ACSI’s executive manager of stewardship, is concerned that bonuses are becoming “a given”.

“At a time when companies are focused on productivity and performance, it is critical that bonuses are only paid for exceptional outcomes,” Mr John said. He added that boards should set performance thresholds for CEO bonuses at appropriate levels.

ACSI said the slightly lower median realised pay of ASX 200 CEOs indicated greater scrutiny from shareholders was having an impact. There was a record 41 strike votes against executive pay at ASX 300 annual general meetings (AGMs) in 2023. This indicated an increasing number of shareholders were feeling unhappy with the executive pay levels at the companies in which they were invested.

A strike vote means 25 percent or more of shareholders voted against a company’s remuneration report. If a second strike vote is recorded at the next AGM, shareholders can vote to force the directors to stand for re-election.

10 highest-paid ASX 200 CEOs in FY23

1. Mick Farrell, ResMed, $47.58 million*
2. Robert Thomson, News Corporation, $41.53 million*
3. Greg Goodman, Goodman Group, $27.34 million
4. Shemara Wikramanayake, Macquarie Group, $25.32 million
5. Mike Henry, BHP Group, $19.68 million
6. Matt Comyn, Commonwealth Bank, $10.52 million
7. Jakob Stausholm, Rio Tinto, $10.47 million
8. Rob Scott, Wesfarmers, $9.57 million
9. Ron Delia, Amcor, $9.33 million*
10. Colin Goldschmidt, Sonic Healthcare, $8.35 million

Source: ACSI. Foreign-domiciled ASX 200 companies*

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11 ACRES ROAD, KELLYVILLE, NSW

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