Bloomberg‘s Scott Reyburn has been busy collecting the sales information during the Frieze vernissage:
Roman Abramovich and Gwyneth Paltrow were among those seen browsing at London’s Frieze Art Fair yesterday as buyers negotiated for discounts from the world’s leading dealers in contemporary art. The Russian billionaire and Hollywood actress separately visited the VIP preview, along with U.S. hedge fund manager David Ganek. […] Chicago-based Stefan Edlis, Italian Jean Pigozzi and London-based David Roberts were also among collectors spotted during the early hours of the fair. Fashion designers Alexander McQueen and Valentino Garavani were also seen browsing.
“Last year was so rough at Frieze,” said the New York- based dealer Marianne Boesky. “Now the feeling is positive. It’s real. There’s no hype or depression. We’re now selling to people who just love art.”
(All bullet points are quotes from Reyburn)
- Boesky sold 13 of a new series of 15 watercolors by U.S. artist Barnaby Furnas, showing the capture and execution of the Civil War abolitionist, John Brown. The watercolors, painted specially for Frieze by Furnas, 38, sold for prices between $25,000 and $30,000.
- “It’s all about decency of transaction,” said Nicholas Logsdail, director of the London-based Lisson Gallery, which attracted three reserves on a new 4-foot-diameter Anish Kapoor gold mirror sculpture, “Turning the World Upside Down,” priced at 475,000 pounds ($759,000). “We’re waiting to get an agreement from one of the three at a fair price that makes everyone feel good,” said Logsdail.
- The 7-foot-high painting “Country Produce II” by 35-year- old U.K. artist Nigel Cooke was reserved by two museums at 120,000 pounds at the booth of the London-based dealer Stuart Shave/Modern Art. Cook’s hallucinogenic paintings of gnome-like down-and-outs have been bought by several museums and private collectors such as David Roberts and Dallas-based Howard Rachofsky.
- London-based dealers Hauser & Wirth (who also have a branch in Zurich) sold Ida Applebroog’s 2009 painting “Mona Lisa” for $325,000 and three of the smaller versions of Subodh Gupta’s life-size bronze sculpture based on Marcel Duchamp’s mustachioed Mona Lisa, “L.H.O.O.Q.,” for 120,000 euros each.
- All three full-size versions of the Leonardo-inspired Gupta sculpture, on show at the company’s Old Bond Street gallery priced at 900,000 euros, have found buyers, said gallery founder Iwan Wirth. “People have stepped up for good things,” said Wirth.
- White Cube sold at least eight works during the first four hours of the fair, said gallery sales executive Graham Steele. One of six versions of Andreas Gursky’s 2007 photograph of medieval stained glass, “Kathedral I,” sold for $750,000. There were two reserves on Damien Hirst’s 2008 stainless steel cabinet filled with surgical instruments, “Night of the Long Knives,” priced at about $5 million, said Steele.