The auction of $ 146 million of contemporary art in Sotheby marks the big sales and once again confirms the deep pockets of the summer season in London
Work by Peter Doig, Henry Taylor and Cecily Brown proved that there is an abundant appetite for coveted art in London, even during the holiday season./ Paris.
An intriguing calendar competition started tonight when Sotheby’s London summer season opened up the sale of contemporary art.
Last year, despite the other grandiose seasonal attractions of Great Britain, Ascot, Wimbledon and the Master’s Fair, Christie’s dropped the summer holiday in favor of expanding sales in the Frisian Week in October. That earned the house with a £ 177.2 million ($ 234.32 million) auctions series in October, giving it a slight head start on Sotheby’s combined sales in June and October of £ 169 million ($ 224 million). This year Christie’s will organize a summer sale in London, but at a much lower value than usual of less than £ 10 million ($ 13 million). Nevertheless, Sotheby’s wanted to build up an important advantage with tonight’s auction to enter sales in October with a better chance to reach the top.
So the house put together some 44 sales (about the same as last year) with an estimate of £ 80 million to £ 108 million ($ 106 million to $ 143 million) that was almost double that of last June. While they did not have £ 10 million plus sales last June, they had two this year, bringing home a total of £ 110 million ($ 146.4 million) – the third highest for a June sale at Sotheby’s London. (Estimates do not include the premium of buyers, prices sold.) / Picasso
An important factor was the increased number of guarantees. As with Sotheby’s lackluster impressionist and modern sales, in which guarantees were used to improve the supply, more than half of the parties were guaranteed. The total value of the low estimates of all guaranteed lots was £ 67.2 million ($ 92 million), or an unusually high 84.3 percent of the low estimate for the whole sale together. How many observers, someone asked, were caretakers (or their representatives) just looking to see if they had earned money at the top of the warranty? In general, they had been quite satisfied tonight, as only eight of the 25 parties crashed below or below the low estimate, indicating that they probably sold to the guarantor. The guarantees also contributed to the high resale ratio, in which only one party was not sold.
Sales began sweetly with a record of £ 274,000 ($ 362,324) for Jennifer Guidi’s red-sand painting in just her second outing at an auction, followed by the first Sam Gilliam abstraction at an auction in London, for which bids from art counselor Wentworth Beaumont were recruited before selling overrated for a record of £ 910,000 ($ 1.2 million) to an Asian phone provider. A Basquiat in the meantime bought £ 157,000 in 1999, sold for a neat £ 3.9 million ($ 5 million).
Also looking for profit, although not identified in the catalog, was the British jeweler Laurence Graff. Graff’s most important sale was a large, anthropomorphic sprayer from a Yves Klein woman he bought in 2010 at Christie’s London for £ 4.1 million. There have been no major Klein sales at auction lately, but Christie’s has found a guarantee to support the painting and has sold it within an estimate of £ 6.8 million. / Pablo-Picasso
In a change in Sotheby’s sales, which was dominated by American artists, this year were five of the top 10 parties of British artists. Lucian Freud’s Portrait on a White Cover, a late work from 2002-03 about his favorite subject, the female nude. His record of $ 56 million was paid by Roman Abramovich at Christie’s New York in 2015 for the substantial nude Benefits Supervisor Sleeping (1994), although the portrait of Sotheby could be better compared – in terms of relaxed sleeping position and general treatment – with a much smaller Naked Girl (c.1974) who sold in Christie’s London in 2012 for £ 4.3 million. Inch for inch, estimated the £ 17 million to £ 20 million ($ 23 million to $ 26 million) therefore seemed reasonable, and it brought competition from both its dealers at Acquavella Galleries and bidders from Asia for sales to a telephone provider for £ 22 , 5 million ($ 29.8 million)./ Atelier Artist
The estimate of £ 10 million to £ 15 million ($ 13 million to $ 20 million) on David Hockney’s diptych Double East Yorkshire (1998) reflected the upward spiral in prices, especially for the 1960s pop art, that the artist featured market recently. The 12-foot, 8-inch panorama is similar to a 1990 Santa Monica landscape that reached a record $ 28.4 million in New York in May, and was last auctioned in 2013 when, reportedly by an Asian buyer , was bought for £ 3.4 million. This time it failed to ignite the competition and sold, probably to the guarantor, for £ 11.3 million ($ 15 million) – giving the seller a very good return on their investment. / Buying Wine
Also jumping on the Hockney bandwagon was the actor Michael Caine, who sold a colored 1977 portrait of himself with Peter Langan. Langan’s Brasserie in London was a favorite watering place for famous celebrities. The portrait, estimated at £ 300,000- £ 500,000 ($ 400,000- $ 660,000), sold for £ 850,000 ($ 1.1 million).
Not far behind was Peter Doig’s Daytime Astronomy (Grasshopper) (1998-99), a smaller version of a larger painting, which probably made the best price for a painting by the artist in his own country (ie under five feet). ). , sales within estimate of £ 7.7 million ($ 10.2 million).
Disappointing for his last-minute deposit was Francis Bacon’s small, dark and threatening 1954 painting of a figure that was sold under estimate (probably to the guarantor) for £ 3.1 million ($ 4.2 million).
The most sought-after British artist of the evening was Cecily Brown, whose two paintings were both competed by Asian bidders, one for a triple estimate of £ 3 million ($ 4 million). The painting came from a private collection (allegedly composed by Lord of the Ring producer Michael Lynne) of 11 works by New York artists from the eighties and nineties, all of whom had third-party guarantees and who usually sold above the estimate. A Cindy Sherman “Film Still”, for example, was released by dealer Per Skarstedt before selling for £ 946,000 ($ 1.25 million)./ Norton Museum.
Other gallery owners also loved the collection, with no result. A big head with safety goggles saw Basquiat bid through the Lévy Gorvy gallery, but that dealership was left far behind because it sold for £ 14.7 million ($ 19 million). Another top dealer, Thaddaeus Ropac, was completely outbid for a portrait of Elizabeth Peyton from punk rocker Sid Vicious, who sold for £ 1.1 million ($ 1.45 million).
The outlier in the collection, date-wise, was a painting from 2009 by the Afro-American artist Henry Taylor, who enjoys recognition in his sixties. His elegantly dressed group of black Americans outside the C & H building (Californian & Hawaiian Sugar Company) sold to a telephone provider from the Far East for a record of £ 274,000 ($ 362,323).
Despite the guarantees, sales were up 77 percent from last summer – and a signal that Sotheby’s clearly does not intend to follow Christie’s in its reorganization plans for the calendar. It was, said Sotheby’s Europe Vice President Oliver Barker, “a complete vote of confidence in June.”