Colin Gleadell remarks on the conflation of several sale departments at Christie’s in London. These consolidations, no doubt, signal the end of Christie’s review of its business in British capital:
For the foreseeable future there will be no more specialised sales planned for Irish, Scottish and sporting art, for British art on paper, Old Master drawings or 19th-century European art. The biggest change is for 19th-century European art, which will now be included in Old Master sales. This could affect a huge market. Sotheby’s currently turns over about £100 million of 19th-century paintings (excluding Impressionists) in specialised sales worldwide per annum. But henceforward at Christie’s a painting such as Turpin de Crisse’s 1805 view of the Acropolis, the top-selling lot at its last 19th-century sale in London, will be marketed alongside work by Brueghel and Canaletto. Interestingly, specialised sales for Orientalist art, a largely 19th-century phenomenon and currently a strong performer in the market, will continue. This suggests that the changes have been made in areas where the market has been weak, turnover is low, or where Christie’s has been underperforming.
Market News (Telegraph)