Lalanne patinated bronze ape to auction for $600,000

A limited edition patinated bronze ape (Singe Avise Grand) by late French artist Francois-Xavier Lalanne is expected to bring $400,000-600,000 to Phillips New York on June 11.

Lalanne ape auction
The ape is one of just eight examples

Numbered seven from an edition of eight, the charming bronze ape was created by Lalanne circa 2005.

Francois-Xavier Lalanne and his wife and long-term co-creator Claude Lalanne are famed for fashioning whimsical sculptural items from a variety of materials.

Francois-Xavier favoured animal themes, while Claude was inspired by vegetation.

He was cast into the spotlight after singer Serge Gainsbourg selected a work by Lalanne to feature on the cover of his 1976 album, L'Homme a Tete Chou (meaning man with cabbage head) - a decision which saw the values of works by the artist soar.

Three sheep-based pieces by Lalanne auctioned for a combined £1.6m ($2.5m) in 2012.


Campana cake
Cake: the Campana brothers are famed for their outlandish designs

Another exciting lot set to star at Phillips is "Cake" - a stool made by Brazilian brothers Fernando and Humberto Campana.

Created circa 2008, the stool is composed of a variety of stuffed animals.

Numbered 68 from an edition of 150, the piece has been given a $20,000-30,000 estimate.

A comparable Campana stool, also made from a patchwork of plush toys, sold for $18,000 in October 2011.

The high end, contemporary furniture market remains in good health. Wright's Scandinavian Furniture auction totalled $1.6m on May 16, with a set of six waste baskets designed by PS Heggen selling with a 650% increase on their $5,000 top estimate for $37,500.

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