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A flea market find may mean a big payout for a Texas man. Ray Riley believes that the canvas he picked up for a mere $90 earlier this year is an authentic Sigmar Polke painting.

Polke has had a resurgence over the past few years, with a retrospective of his work at MoMA this past year and a new record for his work set at auction in May this year when it sold for $27.1 million at Sotheby's New York (prior to that, the record was $9.2 million, set in 2011).

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Thursday, 13 November 2014 11:17

German Bank Decides Not to Sell Sigmar Polke Works

The state bank of Germany's North Rhine-Westphalia has decided against selling two Sigmar Polke works of art following a countrywide controversy over the deaccessioning of two Andy Warhol works of art - reported by "Monopol."

The German casino conglomerate Westspiel, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the bank, announced the decision to sell the pair of works, estimated at €100 million or £78 million, in September. The works will be up at auction at Christie's New York and have generated considerable controversy in Germany, the story has even graced the front pages of German newspapers. The bank has now subsequently dropped plans to sell the pair of Polke works, in a move, which some have seen as an effort by the state to avoid yet further criticism from the public.

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Entire artistic careers might be made from small aspects of Sigmar Polke’s multifarious art, which now fills 14 rooms at Tate Modern. The third Tate show devoted to Polke in 20 years, "Alibis" is a compendious and at times bewildering romp through a career that began in the early 1960s and ended with Polke’s death in 2010.

Dealing with Polke’s legacy has only just begun. There is a lot of messy unfinished business, and much of it is here. As well as paintings, there are films of early performances and games with potatoes, weirdly exposed and manipulated photographs, a slide-show room of photocopy experiments, tables of sketchbook drawings reproduced and flicked-through on iPad tablets.

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The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York is working with the Park Hyatt luxury brand on a collaboration that will mutually benefit guests and members of both global organizations. The collaboration coincides with MoMA’s Sigmar Polke retrospective, “Alibis: Sigmar Polke 1963-2010,” which was sponsored by Park Hyatt.

The Hyatt recently purchased “Siberian Meteorites,” an original work by the postwar German artist and it will be displayed at Park Hyatt Chicago later this year. The work will eventually replace Robert Rauschenberg’s “Tropicana/Channel,” which currently hangs in the hotel’s lobby. The Rauschenberg work is on loan from Hyatt’s Executive Chairman Tom Pritzker.

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Today, May 13, 2013 marked the end of the second-ever Frieze New York. One of the most highly anticipated art fairs, Frieze’s New York iteration took place at Randall’s Island Park and featured approximately 180 of the heaviest hitting contemporary art galleries from around the globe.

Along with its primary offerings, Frieze New York included two separate sections, Frame and Focus, which were dedicated to promising up-and-coming galleries. This year’s fair also featured seven site-specific commissions, a sculpture park, and a series of panel discussions and conversations led by high-profile artists, writers, and cultural commentators.

Frieze New York kicked off with a VIP opening on Thursday, May 9, which attracted throngs of the art world’s most elite collectors. Top sales that day included Sigmar Polke’s (1941-2010) Nachtkappel (1986) which was sold by Paris’ Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac for $4 million; an Anish Kapoor (b. 1954) sculpture sold by London’s Lisson Gallery for $764,500; and a painting of a flying tiger titled Tri Thong Minh, which was sold by New York’s Paul Kasmin gallery for $950,000.

The sister fair of Frieze London, which launched in 2001, the 2013 edition of Frieze New York was the largest stateside version of the show to date.

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