In recent years, one of the true successes of the Hong Kong market has been the shift from Chinese Works of Art toward Asian Contemporary art. The marquee Saturday night Evening sales have featured the biggest names in Asian art for several years now.
Today, Sotheby’s announced that it would try to advance the ball further in the upcoming April sales cycle. On April 2, Warhol, Basquiat and Hirst will appear alongside Lin Fengmian, Zao Wou-ki, Zhang Xiaogang, Liu Ye, Yayoi Kusama, Le Pho and Affandi.
The danger with this strategy is that Sotheby’s could be seen as trying to dump its less appealing works on Chinese buyers. Of course, Asian collectors have proved very sharp in their perception of the market and their dealings with Western dealers and auction houses.
In addition to the Warhol, there’s a $4.5m Jean-Michel Basquiat, a Hirst butterfly painting starting at $830k, and an Adrian Ghenie self portrait priced in the high six-figures in dollar terms.