The Italian sales were strong in London but Christie’s Contemporary auction was the stand-out event of the week. Gerhard Richter was the star artist—his work has grown in value as it has broadened to a global base of buyers—and now there are signs that the market strength might, indeed have meaningful participation from Chinese buyers.
The Master, Judd Tully, reveals the secret of Christie’s strong Contemporary art sale during Frieze Week:
Buyers, meanwhile, spanned the globe, with 49 percent hailing from Europe, 38 percent from America, and significantly, 13 percent from Asia. “I’ve never seen so much Asian buying in one sale,” said Francis Outred, Christie’s European head of postwar and contemporary art.
Let’s remember to keep that number in perspective. With only 53 lots sold, that 13% of buyers can only represent a handful of collectors, say, six or seven.
Scott Reyburn surveyed Christie’s Frieze sale:
- “There were pieces to get excited about,” Jonathan Binstock, the New York-based senior contemporary-art adviser at Citibank NA, said in an interview. “The broad heat in the market has gone and what is left is a focus on quality.”
- “The material was better and it looked good,” the New York- based dealer Christophe van de Weghe said in an interview. “It made people feel more confident.”