[intro]It’s Official, the Art Market is On Fire[/intro]
Tonight’s Evening Latin American art sale at Sotheby’s proves that the art market is back a lot faster than anyone anticipated. It’s one thing to see strength in Impressionism or the Warhol market. But the Latin American market is deep with collectors and we’re seeing them spend for real.
Sotheby’s sale brought in $14.764m (the presale high estimate was $12.9m.) The sale was 86% sold by lot. That’s 50 of the 58 lots sold. Here’s some comments from Sotheby’s release:
One of the highlights of tonight’s sale, La Lectora by Cristóbal Rojas, was sought after by two determined bidders, driving the price above its high estimate. Axel Stein, Vice President, commented, “La Lectora is one of the last important works by the artist remaining in private hands, with all comparable canvases hanging in major museums in Venezuela.”
One of the most exciting moments of this evening’s sale came when lot 5, Sergio Camargo’s Relief, came on the block. At least five bidders competed for the sought-after sculpture, with the final price of $1,594,500 eliciting applause from the salesroom (est. $350/450,000).
Tonight’s sale also saw a number of strong prices for Fernando Botero: El Picador from 1984 comfortably exceeded the $400/600,000 estimate to sell for $662,500. The painting had come from the collection of noted American collectors Mary Schiller Myers and Louis S. Myers, and tonight’s total was many multiples of the price they paid for the work in 1985. The sculpture Ballerini, Piccolo Donna Su Gradino also achieved a price above the top estimate when it sold for $662,500 (est. $400/600,000), as did the 1932 painting Nude, which brought $626,500 against an estimate of $300/500,000.