The sales have closed at Sotheby’s and another week of Contemporary Art Sales are underway in London. The evening’s sales performed well above estimate, bringing in a final sales tally of $159 million for 51 of the 59 available lots.
Peter Doig, Country-Rock (Wing-Mirror), via Sotheby’s
All eyes were turned towards Peter Doig’s Country-Rock (Wing Mirror) which saw early buzz over the work’s potential to break the sales record for a living British artist, but bidding stalled as the work neared the $8.5 million mark, and ultimately sold for the final tally of $14.5 million, falling shy of the record, but still managing to set a new record for the artist at auction. Damien Hirst, who was also hinted at a high sales figure for his work Kingdom of Heaven, also fell shy of a potential new record, bringing in a somewhat stale $1.8 million for the butterfly work.
Even so, the auction still managed to see its fair share of higher energy across the board. Francis Bacon’s Three Studies for a Portrait of George Dyer was the high seller for the night, beating an already impressive $25 – $34 million to bring in a final auction price of $45.4 million. Yves Klein’s impressive fire and blue paint piece also sold well above estimate, doubling a $2.5 million high estimate to sell at $5.4 million. A colorful Mark Rothko, composed from several divergent streaks of color, sold for $4.1 million, over a $1.3 million high estimate.
A number of works also failed to find a buyer, among them Anselm Kiefer’s Wege, which failed to meet its estimated $850,000 low estimate, as well as Cy Twombly’s Lycian Drawing, which failed to meet its $1.1 – $1.4 million price tag. An Anthony Caro sculpture also failed to meet a presale estimate of $1.3 – $2 million. Conversely, record prices were set for Adrian Ghenie ($2.3 million), and Frank Auerbach ($3.9 million)
The sales will continue tomorrow night at Christie’s.
— D. Creahan
Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Auction [Sotheby's]
Small Francis Bacon Triptych Sells for $45 Million at Sotheby’s London [Artnet]
Peter Doig painting of DVP rainbow tunnel sets auction record for the artist [Globe and Mail]