The annual Couer d’Alene auction of Western art held in Reno, Nevada on Friday made $28.5m in hammer prices with an astonishing 96% of the 308 lots sold. That’s only 12 lots that failed to find buyers. Nearly a quarter of the works sold above the high estimate.
Last year’s sale was $18m and there were 600 registered bidders participating in the event, according to the AP.
One of the biggest surprises of the auction was the $1.7 million that Howard Terpning’s 1989 painting “Telling of Legends” fetched, according to organizers. The painting by the Tucson, Ariz., artist features two American Indians sitting on a bluff overlooking the prairie.
“That’s a whopper for a living Western artist,” Overby said, adding it was expected to sell for between $600,000 and $900,000.