This March, Sotheby’s chose Gaston Lachaise’s 9.5-inch bronze cast of cascading dolphins as its cover lot.
[private_subscriber][private_bundle]As Fig. 14 shows, Lachaise is an artist who sold exceptionally well in the bear market of 2009. In fact, patterns in his market actually looked better than those in every subcategory of the American art market (paintings, drawings and sculpture).
His 2009 success was due in large part to the sale of Acrobat, a 24- inch bronze of a voluptuous woman balancing on one hand that brought $278,500 at Sotheby’s in Q4. The work was only estimated to go for $70,000 to $90,000, and its stellar sale upped Lachaise’s 2009 average price to $36,662—his highest in six years (Fig. 15).
In addition to having the coveted cover spot, Lachaise has an unusual amount of works in the Sotheby’s session (Dolphins is sandwiched between four other Lachaise lots). Since 2005, he has averaged about 10 auction appearances annually, so five in Q1 is a disproportionately high quantity of Lachaise. Continue Reading