Russian art sales are typically a mishmosh of Russian periods and styles, and next week’s sessions at Christie’s, Sotheby’s and MacDougall’s are no exception. The earliest dated painting on offer is a waterfront scene from 1815 by Andrei Martynov, (offered at MacDougall’s with an estimate of £170,000 to £250,000) while the most recent, Valery Yershov’s Vigin Soil Upturned (at Sotheby’s for £12,000 to £18,000) dates to earlier this year (is the paint even dry yet?).
In terms of value, the sweet spot is really early 20th-century avant-garde art; the top three prices achieved at Russian art sales in the past five years went to 20th-century works conceived before 1930 by esteemed members of the vanguard, Konstantin Somov, Natalia Goncharova and Alexander Iacovleff. When average prices and boom-era growth are taken in to account, however, avant-garde art is not the star of all Russian styles. To find out which styles—and specific schools—grew in value during the boom, see the latest edition of The ART Report.