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The legendary sports artist's most desirable subject

1966 Muhammad Ali Original Artwork by LeRoy Neiman. It was a year and a half ago, in our August 2012 Platinum Night auction at the Baltimore National Sports Collectors Convention, that a new mark for Neiman's distinctive work was set with the $155,350 result for a massive eight-foot tall oil on board study of the iconic Muhammad Ali. While this offering may not share the towering dimensions of that offering, the key tandem of Neiman and Ali sets this classic watercolor and pastel on paper near the peak of desirability for serious collectors in the sports art subgenre.

The "1966" date, applied in the same pencil as the artist's signature, found the Heavyweight Champion actively defending his title, with five victories that calendar year including George Chuvalo, Henry Cooper, Karl Mildenberger and Cleveland Williams. We also note that a nearly identical image was utilized for the official on-site poster for his 1970 contest with Jerry Quarry.

The daring use of color that elevated Neiman to the peak of his trade is in full effect here, the mid-1960's vintage finding both athlete and subject in their respective primes. The heavy watercolor paper measures 26x20.25" in size, with a museum-quality framing bringing the complete dimensions to 37.75x31".

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Auction Dates
February, 2014
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 7
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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