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    Sunday, December 22nd, 2019

    Monet, Picasso, Bacon and Rothko were the highest priced artists at Sotheby’s in 2019. The top lot of the year at Sotheby’s was Meules by Monet which made $110,747,000 in New York. Picasso’s Femme au Chien made $54,936,000, Bacon’s Study for a Head sold for $50,380,000 and an untitled work by Mark Rothko made $50,095,250. All these works were sold in New York last May.

    Claude Monet – Meules


    Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

    Impressionist and Modern masterpieces features at Sotheby’s evening and day sales in London on June 18 and 19 respectively. Helena Newman, Worldwide Head of Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Department commented: “From Monet to Modigliani, this season’s London sales bring together outstanding works by some of the world’s most beloved and sought-after artists”.

    Claude Monet, Nymphéas, 1908 (£25-35 million)

    “Monet’s Nymphéas – an iconic image of his most celebrated subject – is at the same time radical and poetic, whilst Modigliani’s deeply arresting portrait of an unnamed youth unites the personal and the archetypal. These outstanding works have remained unseen for over half a century in their respective private collections and epitomise quality and freshness, both critical criteria for today’s global collectors. They will be offered alongside defining examples from landmark moments of Impressionism and Modern Art.”

    Amedeo Modigliani, Jeune homme assis, les mains croisées sur less genoux, 1918 (£16-24 million)


    Wednesday, May 15th, 2019

    There was a world record for Monet at Sotheby’s in New York last night when Meules (Haystacks) sold for $110.7 million. This is the first work of Impressionist art to break the $100 million barrier and is 44 times the price achieved when Meules last sold at auction in 1986.

    The scene at the auction room

    A total of 13 works of Impressionism achieved $160 million – nearly half of the auction total of $333.2 million. Another highlight was Gustave Caillebotte’s La Rue Halévy, vue du sixième étage from 1878, which well-exceeded its $8 million high estimate to sell for $13.9 million.

    Helena Newman, Sotheby’s Worldwide Head of Impressionist & Modern Art, said: “Tonight we saw a great depth of impassioned bidding from around the globe, fueled by works long-cherished in private collections.  Nearly two-thirds of the lots offered tonight had never before appeared at auction, and the market responded enthusiastically – helping us to achieve our highest total since 2015, and our second consecutive evening sale with a sell-through rate over 90%. With the record-breaking Monet leading the charge, the Impressionist and Modern market is as strong as it has ever been in my more than 30 years in this business.”

    (See posts on for April 16 and May 7, 2019)


    Tuesday, February 26th, 2019

    Claude Monet – Le Palais Ducal

    There was a new world record for a Venetian view by Monet at Sotheby’s in London on February 26. Le Palais Ducal from 1908 sold for £27.5 million.  The evening sales of  Impressionist, Modern and Surrealist Art brought a total of £87.7 million.  Following the strength of results for German and Austrian art at Sotheby’s New York last November, the London auction saw a continued demand for rare and important pieces from the region, with six works together bringing £25.5 million.

    The group was led by Egon Schiele’s Trieste Fishing Boat from  (1912) which sold for £10.7 million.  Schiele’s  Auf dem Bauch liegendes Mädchen, a major work on paper, was pursued by six bidders from Europe and Asia, selling for £1.6 million. Ernst Ludwig Kirchner’s Mädchen auf dem Diwan (1906) made its auction debut at £3.8 million and was sold to benefit the Museum of Modern Art, New York’s acquisition fund.

    The Surrealist sale was led by René Magritte’sbold and beautifully painted L’Etoile du Matin (1938), which sold for £5.3 million.


    Friday, February 22nd, 2019

    The big art selling season gets underway in London next week with Impressionist and Mondern Art and the Art of the Surreal evening sales at Sotheby’s and Christie’s on February 26 and 27 respectively.

    Highlights at Sotheby’s include Monet’s Le Palais Ducal in Venice (£20-30 million) and Egon Schiele’s modernist vision of a Trieste fishing boat (£6-8 million) as well as three visually arresting paintings by Magritte as well as work by Kirchner, Chagall, Picasso, Rodin, Degas, Jean Arp and Man Ray.

    Christie’s will offer Monet’s waterlilies – Saule pleureur et bassin aux nympheas, a Still Life by Cezanne, an early Van Gogh portrait and art by Paul Signac, Gustav Caillebotte, le Corbusier, Degas, Picasso and Alexej  von Jawlensky.  Here is a sample of upcoming highlights:

    Paul Cézanne Nature morte de pêches et poires at Christie’s  UPDATE: THIS MADE £21.2 MILLION

    Egon Schiele (1890 – 1918)
    Triestiner Fischerboot (Trieste Fishing Boat) at Sotheby’s  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £10.7 MILLION

    Gustave Caillebotte Chemin montant at Christie’s  UPDATE: THIS MADE £16.6 MILLION

    Claude Monet – Le Palais Ducal at Sotheby’s  UPDATE: THIS MADE £27.5 MILLION


    Thursday, June 21st, 2018

    Pablo Picasso, Femme dans un fauteuil (Dora Maar)

    The Impressionist and Modern sale at Christie’s in London last night made £128,081,750.  The top lot was Claude Monet’s exterior view of the Gare St. Lazare which made £24.9 million.

    Picasso’s Femme dans un fauteuil (Dora Maar) made £19.3 million.  Franz Marc’s Drei Pferde sold for £15.4 million, six times the estimate of £2.5 million and Auguste Rodin’s Baiser, moyen modele made £12.6 million.

    A landscape by Kazimir Malevich made £7.8 million and L’Estaque by Georges Braque sold for £5.2 million.  Strong results were also achieved by German and Austrian artists.


    Friday, June 15th, 2018

    Four paintings created by three of the key players in the development of Impressionist art come up at Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern sale in London on June 19.  Each one embodies a different aspect of the movement, together providing an engaging insight into one of the most important periods of art history. The journey opens with Boudin’s Crinolines sur la plage (1866) and Monet’s Le Port de Zaandam (1871)marking the beginnings of Impressionist painting, with both artists painting en plein air to capture fleeting ‘impressions’ of time and place. In a rare still-life painted the following decade, Monet adapts the pioneering techniques of this ‘new’ art to a traditional subject, and the story ends with Pissarro’s majestic urban view of fin-de-siècle Paris.

    Commenting on this group, Philip Hook, Senior Specialist, Sotheby’s Board Director and author of Rogues’ Gallery: A History of Art and its Dealers, said: ‘Three of the works also share a connection with one of the most remarkable men in the history of the Impressionist movement – Paul Durand-Ruel. Durand-Ruel was drawn to contemporary art and to the process of painters painting pictures, and dedicated his life to developing a wider appreciation for such works, creating the modern art market in the process. No dealer was closer to an artistic movement than Durand-Ruel was to Impressionism – he was its promoter and its champion, its defender and its bankroller. Without him, and these revolutionary artists, art history might have looked very different.’

    Claude Monet, Le Port de Zaandam (£3.5-5 million)  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Eugène Boudin, Crinolines sur la plage (£600,000-900,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE £850,000

    Claude Monet, Citrons sur une branche (£2.5-3.5 million)  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Camille Pissarro, Le Boulevard Montmartre, brume du matin (£3-5 million)  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £3.4 MILLION


    Wednesday, May 9th, 2018

    PICASSO – Fillette à la corbeille fleurie    

    It was an historic night at Christie’s in New York as the 19th & 20th Century Art Evening Sale, the first sale in the series from the Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller, totalled $646,133,594 / £476,148,559 / €541,380,911. This exceeded the high estimate by $100 million.  This is the most significant charitable auction ever.

    The top lots of the sale were Picasso’s, Fillette à la corbeille fleurie, which realized $115,000,000, Monet’s Nymphéas en fleur, which totaled $84,687,500, and Matisse’s Odalisque couchée aux magnolias, which sold for $80,750,000.

    In total, 7 works sold above $30 million, and 7 world auction artist records were set for Monet, Matisse, Corot, Delacroix, Seguin, Morandi and Redon. Collectors from Europe, Asia, North and South America, and Australia participated in the sales, representing 34 different countries.

    Marc Porter, Chairman Americas, “The twin goals of education and philanthropy have driven this project and we have been so gratified with the engagement from global audiences from the moment we launched the sale in Hong Kong last November. The Rockefeller legacy has resonated strongly and we are thrilled with the results achieved for the first evening in this series of sales, already over our expectations. With new price levels set for Monet, Matisse, Corot, and others, the bidding was testament to the taste, connoisseurship and standing of the Rockefeller family combined with a shared goal to achieve a great result for the charitable beneficiaries of the sale. We continue tomorrow.”

    Sales of The Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller  continue with English & European Furniture, Ceramics and Decorations Part I  and the Art of the Americas Evening Sale  on 9 May, and the Fine Art Day SaleEnglish & European Furniture, Ceramics and Decorations Part II  and Travel and Americana  on10 May. The Online only sale continues until Friday 11 May.

    • The most valuable collection ever previously offered at auction was the Collection of Yves Saint Laurent et Pierre Bergé in 2009 at Christie’s Paris, which achieved more than US$400 million.

    Matisse – Odalisque couchée aux magnolias

    Monet – Nymphéas en fleur


    Monday, February 26th, 2018

    THE Impressionist and Modern evening sale at Christie’s in London on February 27 will kick off 20th Century at Christie’s, a series of auctions from now to March 7.  Works from prestigious private collections will be offered, ranging from the structured still-lifes of Giorgio Morandi in ‘The Eye of the Architect’ to the early cubist composition of Georges Braque and Francis Picabia’s playful collage in ‘Abstraction Beyond Borders’, a collection that traces the development of abstraction across Europe in the 20th Century. These are complemented by works by Claude Monet, Théo Van Rysselberghe and Jan Toorop from The Triton Collection Foundation and a rare Oskar Kokoshka from the Reinold Collection. Alongside leading masterpieces from the 20th Century, ranging from Kandinsky to Degas and from Derain to Picasso, the diversity of those developing a radical artistic language at this time is represented by artists including Kees Van Dongen, Georges Vantongerloo, František Kupka and Edvard Munch.   Here are some examples from the evening sale:

    Claude Monet (1840-1926)
    Prairie à Giverny © Christie’s Images Limited 2018  UPDATE: THIS MADE £7,546,250 

    Edgar Degas (1834-1917)
    Dans les coulisses (In the Wings) © Christie’s Images Limited 2018  UPDATE: THIS MADE £8,993,750

    KEES VAN DONGEN (1877-1968) La femme au collier – fond rouge © Christie’s Images Limited 2018   UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Pablo Picasso (1881-1973)
    Mousquetaire et nu assis
    © Christie’s Images Limited 2018  UPDATE: THIS MADE £13,733,750


    Thursday, October 26th, 2017

    IF  you are a collector drawn to artists like El Greco, Claude Monet, Robert Delaunay, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Russian artists of the twentieth century it is probably just as well that your name is Rothschild.   Christie’s has announced that property from the collection of Stanford Z. Rothschild, Jr. will be offered across a series of sales in November and December, including the Impressionist and Modern, American Art and Old Masters sales.

    In his lifetime he amassed one of the largest, privately owned collections of Russian avant-garde art in the United States. Certain works in the collection are being sold by the Rothschild Art Foundation, a charitable organization founded by Stanford Z. Rothschild, Jr.  Overall, the collection includes 51 works and is expected to exceed $30 million.

    Conor Jordan, deputy chairman, Impressionist and Modern Art, commented: “Stanford Rothschild, Jr.’s forty-year journey in art collecting was distinguished by an ambitious range and a keen sense of quality.  Few collections range from the 17th to the 20th century; fewer still are as rich in prime examples from the artists represented. Whether it is the expressive force of El Greco’s ‘Saint Francis and Brother Leo in Meditation,’ or the scintillating atmosphere that marks the two fine Monets of the Normandy coast and Venice, Stan’s attention to the compelling experience a great work of art should offer is present everywhere.”


    GEORGIA O’KEEFFE (1887-1986) APPLES – NO 1 ($300,000-500,000)


    Claude Monet (1840-1926) – Le Rio de la Salute painted in 1908 ($7-10 million) CHRISTIE’S IMAGES LTD. 2017