Adam Lindemann Is A Little Frustrated with the Art Market

Adam Lindemann

Adam Lindemann returns to print with some weary words on the challenges of getting collectors to focus on under-appreciated artists. Even taste-making collectors can feel outgunned by a “name brand” gallery:

In this money frenzy, new art drowns out the old. At the gallery (Venus Over Manhattan) we’ve shown Walter Dahn, William Copley and the great Jack Goldstein in an attempt to focus some well-deserved attention on overlooked or under-esteemed artists, but the market doesn’t appreciate piss in the wind, it would rather see more Shiraga or other flavors du jour.

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Gilbert & George Take Singapore

Gilbert & George

Gilbert & George are making a big push in Singapore this weekend with a major gallery show and strong representation at Art Stage Singapore. Local media in Singapore is swooning over the septuagenarian pair.

Winners of the 1986 Turner Prize, Gilbert & George — who describe themselves as “two people, one artist” — are in town for their first exhibition in Singapore at ARNDT Gallery in Gillman Barracks and will also be presenting a new work at Art Stage Singapore, which runs from tomorrow to Sunday.

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Botero Flies High in Singapore

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His public sculptures are popular attractions in the SouthEast Asian city state. It turns out that for Singaporean collectors, Botero is a blue chip draw:

In 2004, over 600 people turned up for a pop-up exhibition of his works at a Keppel Road warehouse. Mr Dick Chia, managing director of arts handling firm Helutrans, which handled the exhibition, said: ” I learnt an important lesson that night – that people will go anywhere to see good art.” More recently, a Malaysian collector snapped up his Quartero painting for US$1.3million (S$1.7million) at the Art Basel fair in Hong Kong. […] The octogenarian, now married to his third wife, Greek sculptor Sophia Vari, owns homes in Monaco, Italy, Greece, Colombia and France, where he now lives.

It’s a bird… no, it’s Botero: Five things to know about the famed Colombian artist (The Straits Times)

Bernard Buffet Makes a Solid Showing in Sotheby’s Hong Kong

Sotheby’s held an off-season sale in Hong Kong yesterday that netted 42m HKD ($5.4m) and was clearly aimed at cultivating the middle market. The top lots were still lesser examples of the big names in Asia, Chu Teh-Chun, Zao Wou-ki, Zhang Xiaogang, Damien Hirst and Roy Lichtenstein. There were also strong numbers for artists like Kaws, Yoshitomo Nara, Yayoi Kusama and others.

But the most interesting sales were these two Bernard Buffet works that made around $100,000 each and hinted at potential market opportunity. Buffet’s works were once hugely popular and valuable. They still trade actively in day sales and have been increasing in value and popularity in Europe lately.

A large body of work combined with a new market, could ignite demand and supply.

Bacon Double Self Portrait Offered at Sotheby’s for £13-18m

Two Studies for a Self Portrait

The Guardian announces Sotheby’s big lot for February’s Contemporary sale:

Two Studies for Self-Portrait was painted in 1977 when Bacon was 68 and reflects his inner emotional turmoil. Everything bad appears to have been on his mind, including the suicide of his friend John Minton in 1957, the death of his decade-long lover Peter Lacy in 1962 and in 1971, the death of his mother Winnie and the suicide of his lover George Dyer on the eve of probably the most important show of Bacon’s life – a retrospective at the Grand Palais in Paris. […] Bacon only made three self-portrait diptychs in this format and this is the only one to appear at auction. […]

The painting last appeared at auction in 1993 when it was sold by Sotheby’s for £353,500. Today the estimate is £13m-18m, a reflection of the soaring prices for Bacon, and Barker doubts collectors will be put off the work’s bleakness.

Sotheby’s to sell rare double self-portrait by Francis Bacon (The Guardian)

German Art Advisor to Repay €19.3m for Inflated Charges

Helge Achenbach

Helge Achenbach has had his day in court and must now repay a substantial amount of money, according to The Art Newspaper:

Since 2007, Achenbach bought 21 works of art for a total price of €24.1m and 11 vintage cars for €48.1m for Albrecht, according to a statement issued by the court today, 20 January. His agreed commission was 5% on the net purchase price of the works of art and 3% for the cars. His client, however, paid €33.6m for the works of art and around €63.2m, which, after charges including VAT and commission, left €19.3m unaccounted for.

German art consultant ordered to pay €19m damages  (The Art Newspaper)

Emin’s Exhibitionist Installation Offered by Saatchi at Christie’s in London

Tracey Emin, Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Saw

Colin Gleadell tells the story behind an attention-getting lot that will appear in Christie’s Contemporary sale in London next month:

Exorcism of the Last Painting I Ever Made consists of nearly 100 paintings, drawings and body prints which she made over two weeks in 1996, locked in a room inside a Stockholm gallery where she worked, naked, and visible through a series of wide-angle lenses embedded in the wall. Here, she battled with her self-doubts as a painter, working in the style of artists she admired – Egon Schiele, Edvard Munch and Yves Klein (rolling naked in blue paint and pressing her body against a canvas). These, together with her various personal effects – CDs, newspapers, food etc., were bought as an installation for a reported £20,000 by the gallery Andreas Brändström, which kept it until 2001 when it was offered at Christie’s with a £30,000 estimate. Emin’s dealer, Jay Jopling, believed to be acting for Tate Modern, bid for the work, but was beaten by Saatchi which bought it for £108,250. Next month the installation will return to Christie’s with an estimate of £600,000 to £800,000.

Market News: Emin’s effects and the future of figurative art  (Telegraph)

Sotheby’s 2014 Auction Total = $6bn

Sotheby's Headquarters

Sotheby’s Auction Sales in 2014 Grow 18% to Total $6 Billion – Highest Ever Total

  • One third of the buyers in 2014 were new to us, accounting for almost a fifth of global sales.
  • Greater Chinese clients purchase more than $1 billion across worldwide sales rooms
  • Sotheby’s dominates in Asia with sales of more than $900 million
  • Contemporary Art: $1.6 billion, up 20.3%
  • Impressionist & Modern Art: $1.4 billion, up 26.7%