A Nautilus Shell print by Edward Weston has sold for $461,000 in Christie's September 29 sale in New York.
Weston is one of the most influential photographers of all time.
He began working on his shell series after a conversation with artist Henrietta Shore, who had begun to focus on natural forms in her own work.
He wrote in a 1927 journal entry: "I was awakened to shells by the painting of Henry [Henrietta Shore]. I never saw a Chambered Nautilus before.
"If I had, my response would have been immediate. If I merely copy Henry's expression, my work will not live. If I am stimulated and work with real ecstasy it will live."
On the eroticism others picked up on in his work, he wrote: "I am not blind to the sensuous quality in shells, with which they combine the deepest spiritual significance…
"No! I had no physical thoughts,—never have. I worked with clearer vision of sheer aesthetic form. I knew that I was recording from within, my feeling for life as I never had before…
"Others must get from them what they bring to them: evidently they do!"
Weston is among the biggest names in the photography market, his work often selling close to or above the $1m mark. Earlier this year another piece from the series made $905,000 at Sotheby's New York.
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