Christie's Evening Sale of Post-War and Contemporary Art Totals $325 Million Christie’s Evening Sale of Post-War and Contemporary Art totaled $325,006,000 this evening, the second highest ever for a sale in the field.
News-Antique.com - Nov 14,2007 - New York – Christie’s Evening Sale of Post-War and Contemporary Art totaled $325,006,000 this evening, the second highest ever for a sale in the field. Sixteen new world auction records were set including for artists such as Jeff Koons, Lucian Freud, Ed Ruscha, Richard Prince and Gerhard Richter. The sale was 94% sold by value and 93% by lot. Buyers were 51% American, 26% European, 7% Asian and 16% others.
“Tonight’s auction surpassed all of our expectations. It was a robust, sophisticated and well-edited auction, which established multiple records for the most significant artists of the 20th and 21st centuries. The sale realized the second highest total ever for the field and it provided excitement, awe and energy,” said Marc Porter, President Christie’s Americas. “In a market as watchful and alert as today’s, this sale was a clear and resounding vote of confidence of a deep and global client base, which is willing to spend millions of dollars on great works of art.”
Mark Rothko’s superbly magical and reflective work never fails to stun one in its serene but almost tangible power. Untitled (Red Blue Orange) realized $34,201,000, second only to the Rockefeller Rothko which sold for $72 million in May of this year, and No.7 (Dark Over Light), 1954 fetched $21,041,000. Both derive from Rothko’s classic period and they reflect the artist’s spare but emotive vocabulary of luminous rectangles stacked and set afloat within a radiantly hued ground. Untitled (Black and Gray), 1969, part of his final series of works went for $10,681,000 and the verdant Green, Blue, Green on Blue realized $6,089,000 and set a world auction record for a work on paper by the artist.
At the zenith of the art market lives Andy Warhol and two major works were presented in the sale. Coolly sexy and stunningly beautiful, Liz, part of the series of portraits Warhol executed in the 1960s, realized $23,561,000. Elvis 2 Times, one of the celebrated pictures of “the King” that Warhol executed in his Firehouse studio in 1963 and based on a publicity image for the movie, Flaming Star, was acquired for $15,721,000.
Lucian Freud’s Ib and Her Husband, a deadly honest and deeply intriguing portrait of Freud’s daughter Isobel and her partner realized $19,361,000 and set a new record for the artist. Dating from 1992, Ib and her Husband, a work that has been included in several major exhibitions since it was painted, is another splendid example of the intricate father-daughter artistic relationship. This new record set in New York proves a truly global market for a School of London artist.
An iconic Photo-Painting from the earliest phase of Richter’s career, Düsenjäger, part of a rare group of works depicting military aircrafts, most of which reside in museum collections, fetched $11,241,000, setting a new record for Richter at auction. It is one of the largest and rarest of the artist’s monumental depictions of a single fighter jet in motion. The work was offered by well-known Chicago collectors Lewis and Susan Manilow.