‘Madonna x Meisel – The SEX Photographs’ Auction Coming to Christie’s

Madonna‘s ongoing 30h anniversary celebration of her infamous 1992 erotic coffee table book Sex will continue this summer and fall thanks to a Christie’s auction of select photos from the volume. “Madonna x Meisel — The SEX Photographs” will honor Yves Saint Laurent’s 2022 reissue of the photo book from the singer and fashion photographer Steven Meisel with a series of public displays and an auction in which more than 40 works will go under the gavel in New York on Oct. 6.


Ahead of the auction, a curated selection of photographs will be on view in London (May 23-June 2), Paris (June 27-July 6) and New York (Sept. 30-Oct. 6). The original book sparked a sensation — and lots of pearl clutching — at the time of its release thanks to the explicit photos of the pop icon and erotic text in which she introduced her dominatrix character Mistress Dita amid images of Madonna with rappers Big Daddy Kane and Vanilla Ice, as well as model Naomi Campbell, gay porn star Joey Stefano and others.

It became the fastest-selling coffee table book of all time and in 2022, Madonna and Saint Laurent’s creative director, Anthony Vaccarello, honored the 30th anniversary with the fist-ever re-edition of the book with 800 limited-edition copies and a first-time gallery show at last year’s Miami Art Basel.

“The much-deserved hype and white-hot energy given off by Madonna in the early 1990s was conveyed and immortalized through Steven Meisel’s photographs,” read a statement from Christie’s deputy chairman and international head of photographs. “He knew how to capture the allure and sexuality of pop’s reigning queen in a way that was unrivalled. In the intervening 30 years since her infamous SEX book was released — shot exclusively in collaboration with Meisel — what has become clear is how truly iconic those photographs remain. They sit at a moment in art history of the late 20th century that both summarizes a moment, playful and prescient, and hints at the future of public stardom driven by image-conscious figures. These images are nothing short of brilliant. ”

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