Saturday, July 4, 2015

Saul Steinberg: Thirteen Colonies

Saul Steinberg's 1967 lithograph Thirteen Colonies takes icons of American patriotism and poses them as ancient Egyptian monuments. The American bald eagle is perched atop a truncated pyramid surrounded by eyes in triangles like those on the back of the dollar bill, which took these in turn from the Great Seal. Uncle Sam presides as the Sphinx. The Statue of Liberty standing in New York Harbor may be seen on the base.

Saul Steinberg, Thirteen Colonies, 1967, Artist's Proof aside from the edition of 100

Swann Auction Galleries, May 13, 2014
Sale 2350, Lot 246
Hammer Price $1,900

A numbered example of this print was also sold at Swann ten years earlier. Once again, the print was sold by the Museum of Modern Art.
Saul Steinberg, Thirteen Colonies, 1967, 65/100

Swann Auction Galleries, November 19, 2004
Sale 2024, Lot 222
Hammer Price $1,100

Another 1967 Steinberg lithograph, Annuit Coeptis, was formerly referred to by Swann as Sam's Art. It was published in a larger edition than Thirteen Colonies, but it can be considered a variation on the same American theme.
Saul Steinberg, Annuit Coeptis, 1967, 90/225

Swann Galleries, March 6, 2008
Sale 2138, Lot 735
Hamer Price $850

Note:  Three cheers for the red, white, and blue. Patriotic posts for Independence Day are here to assist you in the pursuit of happiness. There are also a few posts about America's adopted son Saul Steinberg.


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