Sotheby’s put together some interesting stats on the bright points of their London Contemporary Evening sale:
Depth of bidding across broad range of artists and schools
- Nine bidders (inc. Asian) for Adrain Ghenie’s “Sunflowers in 1937” (see above)
- Six bidders (inc. Asian and Russian) for Lucian Freud’s “Pregnant Girl” (see above)
- Five bidders for Mike Kelley’s self-portrait work on paper, Visceral Egg(1994). Sold for £245,000 / $354,294 (est. £80,000-120,000) [lot 2].
- Five bidders for Günther Förg’s untitled work from 1989. Sold for £389,000 / $562,533 (est. £180,000-220,000) [lot 4]. These works have been in exhibitions both at White Cube, London, and Skarstedt Gallery, New York, in 2015.
- Four bidders for Gebirge, the first Gerhard Richter mountainscape to come up at auction since 2008. Sold for £1.5 million / $2.2 million (est. £800,000- £1.2 million) [lot 27].
- Six bidders for Ai Wei Wei’s iconoclastic photograph “Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn”. Sold for £755,000 / $1.1 million (est. £150,000-200,000) [lot 42]. Another version of the same photograph featured in the Royal Academy show in 2015. The last time a work from the same edition appeared at auction in 2008, it sold for just under £50,000.
Artists offered for the first time in London tonight:
- Cheyney Thompson: “Chronochrome XIII” from 2009 (the first work by the artist to appear at auction in Europe), sold for an above estimate £197,000 / $284,882 (est. £70,000-90,000) [lot 1]
- Richard Diebenkorn: an untitled work on paper from 1976 (the first work by the artist to appear at auction in Europe) sold for an above estimate £269,000 / $389,001 (est. £120,000-180,000) [lot 24]
- Chung Sang-Hwa: “Untitled 81-5” from 1981-5 (the artist’s first work offered at auction outside Asia) also sold for an above estimate £269,000 / $389,001 (est. £200,000-300,000) [lot 47]
- 75% of the works offered tonight had never been offered at auction before
- Particpataion from 38 countries (similar to Febraury 2015 sale)