Kelly Crow reports that Sotheby’s star Cézanne has hardly kept pace with a similar work from late last century:
The subject matter is quintessential Cézanne, which may have worked in its favor with bidders, but “Apples” is also only 15 inches tall—small for anyone seeking wall-power punch. In 1999, Sotheby’s asked the same price, $25 million, for a wider, 23-inch-tall still life by the artist. That painting, “Still Life with Curtain, Pitcher and Bowl of Fruit,” wound up selling for $60.5 million.
Elsewhere in the sale, an American telephone bidder paid $4.4 million for Morisot’s 1876 portrait, “Woman with a Fan.” Three months ago, Morisot became the most-expensive female artist at auction when her 1881 portrait of a brunette in a lavender dress, “After Lunch,” sold for $10.9 million. The Lewyts’ smaller portrait of a blonde in a lacy black dress only expected to sell for $2.5 million to $3.5 million estimate.
Carol Vogel had this observation:
“Trophy-hunting season has started,” said Rory Howard, a private dealer, as he was leaving the sale. “Brand names, that’s what collectors want.”
Judd Tully declares the Impressionist and Modern market alive and well:
London dealerJonathan Green of Richard Green Gallery, “Top paintings make top prices,” said Green, moments after the auction. “There are no cracks in the market. It’s not mad but it’s good and strong. I don’t see a problem.”
“Even mediocre Monets are selling for a lot of money,” opined Nanne Dekking, vice-president of Wildenstein & Company. […]
Honore Daumier’s brilliant cariacature, “Les Avocats-Let Parquet des Avocats,” another work on paper from the early 1860s — offered by the storied John T. Dorrance, Jr. family collection — hit a record $2,629,000 (est. $600-800,000). Miami Marlins’s baseball franchise owner and well-known dealer/collector Jeffrey Loria was the underbidder. He threw up his hands in frustration after a final victorious bid from a telephone competitor, then swiftly exited the salesroom.
Katya Kazakina had this:
One surprise, dealers said, was Marc Chagall’s “Animal Dans les Fleurs” from 1952-59. Estimated at $1 million to $1.5 million, it surged to $4.8 million, a record for a work on paper by the artist at auction.
“That price makes the prices that the Japanese paid for Chagall in the 1980s look cheap,” said private dealer David Nisinson. “I never thought we’d see it again.” […]
Canadian collector Francois Odermatt seemed giddy after his sculpture by Camille Claudel, “La Valse,” sold for $1.9 million. He bought the work in 1989 for $100,000, he said.
“I am opening a museum of contemporary art in Montreal,” he said. “Now I have money to spend next week in contemporary auctions.”