Art collection of Ron and Diane Disney Miller to hit the auction block

Diebenkorn’s ‘Ocean Park #108’, Thiebaud’s ‘Mickey Mouse,’ and Wyeth’s ‘Oliver’s Cap’ are some of the highlights of the Ron and Diane Disney Miller Collection. — Images courtesy of Christie’s
Diebenkorn’s ‘Ocean Park #108’, Thiebaud’s ‘Mickey Mouse,’ and Wyeth’s ‘Oliver’s Cap’ are some of the highlights of the Ron and Diane Disney Miller Collection. — Images courtesy of Christie’s

NEW YORK, Oct 3 ― The collection of Ron and Diane Disney Miller, daughter of Walt Disney, will be offered across a series of sales at Christie’s in November.

Although the auction house did not disclose how many lots will be auctioned, the Ron and Diane Disney Miller Collection includes a group of paintings, drawings, works on paper and sculpture.

Among them are pieces by artists such as Richard Diebenkorn, Milton Avery and Wayne Thiebaud, who were associated with the Walt Disney Company.

In the late 1940s, Thiebaud, who is widely known for his colourful still lifes of food and cosmetics, apprenticed at Walt Disney Studios as an animator drawing characters such as Goofy, Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket.

In addition, Diebenkorn worked in cartography alongside Walt Disney-trained animators during World War II, where he learned to translate three-dimensional imagery onto a two-dimensional plane.

This experience played a significant role in his own practice, as he explained years later.

“One thing I know has influenced me a lot is looking at landscape from the air... Of course, the Earth’s skin itself had ‘presence’ ― I mean, it was all like a flat design ― and everything was usually in the form of an irregular grid,” he said.

Among the highlights of the Ron and Diane Disney Miller Collection is Diebenkorn’s “Ocean Park #108”. This canvas belongs to a series of “Ocean Park” paintings that the artist made in his studio in the Ocean Park neighbourhood of Santa Monica over 20 years.

It is expected to sell for between US$7 million (RM29.3 million) and US$9 million at Christie’s Post-War & Contemporary Art evening sale on November 14.

Andrew Wyeth’s “Oliver’s Cap,” which is estimated between US$3 million and US$5 million, is another standout piece from the Ron and Diane Disney Miller Collection.

The enigmatic painting will go under the hammer on November 20 as part of Christie’s American Art sale, alongside a group of works on paper by American landscape painter Winslow Homer.

Meanwhile, Thiebaud’s “Mickey Mouse,” which depicts Disney’s iconic cartoon character, will be offered during the auction house’s Post-War & Contemporary Art morning session on November 13.

Proceeds from the auction of the 1988 painting, which carries a high estimate of US$600,000, will fund programming initiatives at The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco.

Sale of the remainder of the collection, which also includes works by Henri Matisse, Winslow Homer and Roy Lichtenstein, will benefit additional causes important to the Disney family.

Highlights of the collection will be on public view in Christie’s Los Angeles galleries from October 15 through 17, and in San Francisco from October 22 to 25. — AFP-Relaxnews

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