Collection by Erika Heet

LAMA’s 50th

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Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA), headquartered in a 17,000-square-foot gallery in Van Nuys, California, has been steadily auctioning works by important 20th century artists, designers and architects for nearly two decades, and will hold their 50th auction on October 17, 2010. Director Peter Loughrey, who established LAMA in 1992, cites Pacific Standard Time, Art in L.A. 1945–1980—a celebration of L.A. art with concurrent exhibitions throughout California beginning in fall 2011—as an inspiration for the auction offerings. “In anticipation of the Getty-funded ‘Pacific Standard Time’ exhibitions to be held throughout California next year, the market has been yearning for great California-related modernism,” he says. Loughrey names an original Eames ECS unit, once set up in the Herman Miller Showroom by the Eames office, as an “obvious highlight,” as well as a photomural of Mies van der Rohe designs created by the late architect Craig Ellwood (exhibited at LACMA in 1969), and a desk made for Walt Disney Studios by German-born designer KEM Weber, used in the studio to create early Disney animation. And no Alexander Calder devotee should miss the numbered, signed and dated hammock he created in 1975.

To see some of our favorite picks from the auction preview, check out the slideshow.

An Eames Contract Storage (ECS) unit, made in 1961, shown installed at the LAMA gallery in Los Angeles. “This…
A rosewood-and-steel desk designed in 1960 by Danish architect and designer Bodil Kjaer. She referred to her furniture…
The coconut chair in green vinyl, designed by George Nelson for Herman Miller in 1955. Nelson, who would design his…
Designed around 1927 for the offices of Walt Disney by German-born KEM Weber (1889–1963), this early modern desk was…
Immortalized in Taschen’s "1000 Chairs," Pierre Paulin’s Tongue chair was designed in 1967 and is part of the permanent…
There is some debate over which form Calfornia artist Gordon Newell intended this glazed-ceramic sculpture to take—he…
A 1951 ceramic lantern by Malcolm Leland, the designer of the terra-cotta screen cladding on Richard Neutra’s 1962 Hall…
Studio craftsman Michael Coffey, who was a contemporary of artists Wharton Esherick, George Nakashima and Wendell…
The Eero Saarinen Tulip table is among the most ubiquitous mid-century modern pieces, but the stools, designed in 1957…
This signed and dated hammock is vintage Alexander Calder—with his signature bright, primary colors infused into the…
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