The Russian Art Sales Feel the Bite of the Bear Markets in Commodities
Bloomberg reports on the Russian sales in London:
Sotheby’s took 16.1 million pounds for two sales, against Christie’s International’s 3 million pounds and Bonham’s 1.7 million pounds. Three of the four auctions missed the companies’ own presale low estimates. [ . . . ]
Some collectors and dealers blame the weak results on unrealistically high prices auction houses set amid a global financial crisis that triggered a 65 percent drop in the Russian stock market in the last six months.
“We need to get past this otherwise the market risks stagnating,” said Samarine.
[ . . . ]
“We’re at an awkward moment where the market doesn’t want to buy at the old prices, and sellers don’t want to accept the new reality,” said London-based art dealer Ivan Samarine.
(More results after the jump.)
Bonhams sold one-third of the 244 lots offered for about 1.7 million pounds on a presale low estimate of 5.8 million pounds. None of its top lots sold.
Sotheby’s sold 59 percent of the 55 lots of 19th-century and 20th-century Russian paintings, netting 14.1 million pounds against a presale low estimate of 17.5 million pounds.
The Sotheby’s sale of Imperial works of art bucked this trend with 94% of the lots sold, 78% those went for above the high estimates.