Mark McDonald

The Founder of Mid-century Design

Mark McDonald has always been at the epicenter of the world that is mid-century design, to a large extent, it is a world he created. For over forty years, Mark has pioneered whole fields of collecting, providing the scholarship and creating the market for mid-century furniture, studio jewelry, ceramics and Italian glass.

Fifty/50 store front; Ralph Cutler, Mark Isaacson and Mark McDonald

In 1983, Mark opened Fifty/50 with partners Mark Isaacson and Ralph Cutler. This groundbreaking gallery defined collectors’ taste. At the time, modern works were still largely overlooked; Mark and his partners collected and presented the rarest and most interesting pieces, often working with the makers themselves, to create compelling exhibitions accompanied by catalogs documenting the work. 

Fifty/50 opened its doors with an exhibition of Eames design; Mark McDonald and Ray Eames

In the 1990s, Mark opened Gansevoort Gallery, where he continued to curate collections and exhibitions of lasting impact. Over the years, he established relationships with artists and their estates becoming the go to authority on the designs of Art Smith, Ilonka Karaz and Leza McVey, among others. His enthusiasm for the material extended beyond the gallery floor to the back room where lucky visitors got to flip through Mark’s impressive design reference library and discuss the importance of works with him. 

Art Smith with his Spiral necklace design; Mark hosted an exhibition on Art Smith at Gansevoort Gallery. He support of the artist extended to the Brooklyn Museum to which Mark donated several Smith pieces for their collection.

A connoisseur and wealth of knowledge, Mark became a resource for prominent collections across the globe—private and public alike. He inspired a generation of collectors and dealers introducing designers and their production to an audience that continues to grow. In 2002, Mark closed Gansevoort and established 330 gallery in Hudson, New York. Now, semi-retired, Marks splits his time between New York and Florida. He still collects, curates, supports, and shepherds the scholarship of mid-century design. 

Wright is honored to offer the following sixty plus works from Mark McDonald’s personal collection.

Gerrit Rietveld 1888–1964

Gerrit Rietveld was a celebrated designer and architect, famous for bringing the principles of the De Stijl Movement to these disciplines. Rietveld was born in 1888 in Utrecht, Netherlands to a family of cabinetmakers and later studied drafting and architecture. Rietveld opened his own furniture studio in 1917 and soon after became involved with the De Stijl Movement. In 1918, he designed his now-famous Red Blue armchair, which was heralded as a distillation of the movement’s emphasis on geometry, primary colors and an objective language of forms. He regarded this chair, and others he would design, as “spatial creations,” rather than simply furniture. The Schröder House in Utrecht, designed by Rietveld in 1924, is regarded as the architectural embodiment of the ideals of De Stijl and his most important work. In 1928, Rietveld distanced himself from De Stijl and became concerned with the challenges of affordable housing. He was a visionary in designing prefabricated and standardized buildings, of which the architectural world would not consider more seriously until the 1950s. In the 1930s and 1940s, Rietveld largely worked on private commissions and designed enduring modernist icons such as the Crate chair and Zig Zag chair, both from 1934. His last major work before his death in 1964 was the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, which was completed in 1973.

Auction Results Gerrit Rietveld

GERRIT RIETVELD, Rare Elling cabinet | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Rare Elling cabinet

estimate: $50,000–70,000
result: $72,500
GERRIT RIETVELD, Schroeder House Dining Room Chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Schroeder House Dining Room Chair

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $64,350
GERRIT RIETVELD, Important Zig Zag dining suite for Alphonso "Fons" Johannes Seyler | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Important Zig Zag dining suite for Alphonso "Fons" Johannes Seyler

estimate: $30,000–50,000
result: $37,500
GERRIT RIETVELD, Crate chairs, pair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Crate chairs, pair

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $35,000
GERRIT RIETVELD, Hoge Stoel | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Hoge Stoel

estimate: $30,000–50,000
result: $32,500
GERRIT RIETVELD, Beugelstoel | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Beugelstoel

estimate: $20,000–30,000
result: $32,500
GERRIT RIETVELD, Berlin chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Berlin chair

estimate: $25,000–35,000
result: $27,600
GERRIT RIETVELD, Zig-Zag chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Zig-Zag chair

estimate: $9,000–12,000
result: $25,200
GERRIT RIETVELD, Red Blue chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Red Blue chair

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $25,200
GERRIT RIETVELD, Beugelstoel | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Beugelstoel

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $25,200
GERRIT RIETVELD, Zig-Zag chairs, pair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Zig-Zag chairs, pair

estimate: $12,000–15,000
result: $25,200
GERRIT RIETVELD, Zig-Zag armchair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Zig-Zag armchair

estimate: $15,000–20,000
result: $25,000
GERRIT RIETVELD, Rare Zwaan armchair, model 142 | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Rare Zwaan armchair, model 142

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $25,000
GERRIT RIETVELD, Military Chair 1 | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Military Chair 1

estimate: $15,000–20,000
result: $21,600
GERRIT RIETVELD, Military Chair 1 | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Military Chair 1

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $21,250
GERRIT RIETVELD, Red Blue chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Red Blue chair

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $21,250
GERRIT RIETVELD, hanging cabinet from the Harrenstein-Schräder residence | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

hanging cabinet from the Harrenstein-Schräder residence

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $20,000
GERRIT RIETVELD, armchair, model no. R54 | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

armchair, model no. R54

estimate: $15,000–20,000
result: $18,750
GERRIT RIETVELD, Zig Zag chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Zig Zag chair

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $18,750
GERRIT RIETVELD, Red Blue chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Red Blue chair

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $18,750
GERRIT RIETVELD, Red Blue chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Red Blue chair

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $16,250
GERRIT RIETVELD, Zig-Zag armchair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Zig-Zag armchair

estimate: $15,000–20,000
result: $15,600
GERRIT RIETVELD, Crate chairs, pair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Crate chairs, pair

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $15,000
GERRIT RIETVELD, Rare Crate chair | wright20.com

Gerrit Rietveld

Rare Crate chair

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $13,750