Beautiful Inside My Head Forever smashes all pre-sale expectations and realises £70 million exhibition for Beautiful Inside My Head Forever, a major auction of new works by Damien Hirst at Sotheby’s realised £70,545,100/US$127,256,306/€88,851,244
(€3,296,415/US$4,721,257 ) – more than double the high
estimate of £800,000-1,200,000 (€ 1,020,000-1,520,000/US$ 1,580,000-2,370,000)
• The Black Sheep with Golden Horn, (lot 9): made £2,617,250 (€3,296,415/US$4,721,257)
Works sold to benefit charities:
Over the course of the two-day sale, five works are to be sold to benefit charities, two of which were offered
this evening and both exceeded their pre-sale estimates by a wide margin:
• Lot 30, Beautiful Love Demelza Painting with Beautiful Butterflies, sold to benefit Demelza, Hospice
Care for Children realised £769,250 against an estimate of £400,000-600,000.
• Lot 8, Beautiful Love Survival Painting with Beautiful Butterflies, sold in aid of Survival International,
made £898,335 against an estimate of £400,000-600,000.
Three further works (two to benefit charities designated by Hirst and one to benefit the Bill & Melinda Gates
Foundation) will be offered tomorrow.
New benchmarks set:
• First ever auction dedicated to the work of a single living artist.
• The largest exhibition of works by Damien Hirst ever staged.
• Tonight’s sale eclipsed the total for any previous auction dedicated to a single artist. Previous sales
dedicated to a single artist included:
- The Collection of Stanley J. Seeger at Sotheby’s in 1993: 88 works by Pablo Picasso were offered
and the sale realised $20 million.
- The Man Ray Sale at Sotheby’s in 1995: 599 works were offered and the sale realised £4 million
• Record number of visitors to a pre-sale exhibition at Sotheby’s London: more than 21,000 people
attended the 11-day view, which makes it the best-attended pre-sale exhibition ever staged at our
London galleries, with over 4,500 people visiting on one day alone. (This also represents up to
nearly 9 times the average number of visitors to a Contemporary Art auction exhibition at Sotheby’s
• The pre-sale exhibition lasted 11 days: the longest pre-sale view at Sotheby’s London.
• For the first time at Sotheby’s London, the pre-sale exhibition was open to the public until midnight
on one of the viewing days (on Saturday, September 13th).
• Record number of over-the-counter catalogues sales: almost 1,300 catalogues were purchased by
visitors attending the exhibition (£50 per catalogue).
• All 13 galleries at Sotheby’s New Bond Street premises were given over to the contents of a single
sale and the work of one living artist – a first in Sotheby’s 264 year history.
• The auction salerooms were filled to capacity with every single ticket (almost 700) – seated and
standing – reserved.
• Sotheby’s brought a group of 14 Damien Hirst works in the sale to New Delhi, India, representing
the first-ever exhibition of the artist’s work in India.
Notes to editor:
*Estimates do not include buyers premium