An original Roberto Clemente painting by sports artist Graig Kreindler is being auctioned for charity through Love of the Game Auctions.
The 30” x 20” painting captures Clemente standing on second base with his face turned toward the sun after hitting a double in the National League Championship Series against the Cincinnati Reds in October of 1972. The moment happened just days after Clemente recorded his 3,000th career hit. Sadly, Clemente died in a plane crash less than three months later while attempting to deliver earthquake relief supplies to Nicaragua.
The painting is expected to sell for a five-figure price, with proceeds going to UnidosUS, the naton’s largest Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization (formerly known as NCLR—National Council of La Raza). Bidding opened at $5,000.
“We can’t think of a better way to honor Roberto Clemente on the 50th anniversary of his death than to support an organization dedicated to the Latinx community,” said Al Crisafulli, LOTG auction director. “Graig is an incredible visual historian, and his work chronicles the game of baseball with reverence. His are among the most beautiful pieces of sports art ever created. It’s always an honor to auction his highly sought-after paintings.”
Crisafulli added that news about the Clemente offering was met with great enthusiasm by LOTG consignors, resulting in nearly 50 additional Clemente-related lots in the company’s Spring 2022 auction. Among the highlights is the star’s rookie card, graded PSA 8.
A resident of Brooklyn, Kreindler is well known for his award-winning sports work, which has appeared in juried shows and museums across the United States, featured by print, digital and broadcast news outlets, and published in books and magazines. His primary works center around nostalgic baseball scenes.
“I’ve been in love with the photograph this painting is based on ever since I first laid eyes on it,” Kreindler said. “There’s simply something regal about the way Roberto stands there, basking in the warm sun like that – I see it in my mind’s eye whenever his name is conjured up. To me, it’s one of those rare images that transcends sport, especially knowing the quality of Roberto’s character and his commitment to humanitarian causes. And it’s because of that I want 100% of the proceeds from the auction of this artwork to go to UnidosUS, an organization for which I believe he would have had a deep affinity.”