The coverage of the sale of Leonardo’s Salvator Mundi for $450m which accounted for more than half of Christie’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening sale has effectively blotted out any reporting on the rest of the sale. The Contemporary art sold last night had exceptional results for artists like Hans Hoffmann, Philippe Parreno, Lee Krasner, Julian Schnabel, and William Baziotes. Abstract Expressionist works from the Eppler estate did well but could not surpass the strong estimates and guarantees with at least one big failure. A big, guaranteed Basquiat was bought in. Two works by Cy Twombly were sold at or above expectations. And a Rothko that could have been expected to fly a few years ago got solid bids within the estimate range. We’ll have a more detailed look at these sales for AMMpro subscribers when we publish our sales analysis.
In the meantime, the significance of the Leonardo sale may be best measured in terms of Christie’s corporate evolution. The sale puts a punctuation point on three different themes:Continue Reading