The NY Times has a story capitalizing on the interest in tonight’s Basquiat sale at Sotheby’s. That’s interesting because the usual tone from the Times is that art auctions are some canary in the coal mine of moral decay and ruin.
In this story, the Times situates the artist for its readers eschewing some of the complexity of how Basquiat’s market has been structured with the support of a group of interested parties. That seems to be changing as Robin Pogrebin produces some numbers showing that Basquiat has emerged into market leadership right now:
There are no fewer than 16 Basquiats on offer at Sotheby’s, Christie’s and Phillips’s evening auctions this season, which together represent an estimated minimum value of about $119 million — out of a total of $690 million for the three sales. Basquiat is, both numerically and financially, the week’s heavyweight artist.
Basquiat replaces Richter and Warhol as the artist attracting the most dollars. Already Phillips has sold four works for $2.6m in their day sale with another $8m or more on offer later this afternoon in their “early” Evening sale.
Christie’s sold $56m worth of Basquiat’s work last night. Sotheby’s has $70m or more available tonight too. Continue Reading