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  • Posts Tagged ‘sotheby’s’

    BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY’S FOR £377,000

    Wednesday, August 5th, 2020

    Truman Capote’s final typescript for Breakfast at Tiffany’s sold for £377,000 at Sotheby’s Books and Manuscripts sale in London on August 4. It was covered in handwritten edits including the last minute change to his protagonist’s name to Holly Golightly. Until the very final draft Holly was known throughout as Connie Gustafson. This typescript was submitted to Random House, who published all of Capote’s major works, in May 1958, just before Capote departed for a sojourn in Greece. It had been estimated at £120,000-180,000.

    QUESTIONNAIRE FILLED IN BY A YOUNG OSCAR WILDE AT SOTHEBY’S

    Friday, July 31st, 2020

    A questionnaire filled in by a young Oscar Wilde comes up at Sotheby’s online Summer Miscellany sale of Books and Manuscripts which closes on August 4. Recording preferences across 39 questions he responds as follows:

    Your idea of happiness? ‘Absolute power over men’s minds, even if accompanied by chronic toothache’

    Your idea of misery? ‘Living a poor and respectable life in an obscure village’.

    What is your dream? ‘Getting my hair cut’

    ‘What is your aim in life?’ ‘Success: fame or even notoriety’.

    Wilde was in his early twenties when he contributed to the album of “Mental Photographs” in 1877. He was still at Oxford and yet to publish a book, but had already established a keen following. It is signed grandiosely with his full name, ‘Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde’.

    It is from the collection of actor and director Steven Berkoff (b.1937), famed for his villainous on-screen roles including General Orlov in the James Bond classic, Octopussy (1983). Berkoff began collecting Oscar Wilde material around the time he directed Wilde’s great tragedy, Salome, in the late 1980s. The show opened to acclaim at The Gate Theatre, Dublin, on the sixtieth anniversary of Salome’s first controversial public viewing there in 1928, and went on to sell out at London’s National Theatre, before travelling to Japan, Germany and beyond. The estimate is £40,000-60,000.

    UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £47,880

    BANKSY’S SHOT IN THE ARM FOR BETHLEHEM HOSPITAL

    Tuesday, July 28th, 2020

    There was a welcome shot in the arm for the fundraising efforts of a hospital in Bethlehem this evening thanks to a very generous charitable donation by the anonymous street artist Banksy. His trio of found seascape paintings reworked into a pointed response to the refugee crisis sold for £2,235,000 at Sotheby’s cross departmental global online Rembrandt to Richter sale. The tripartite work by Banksy, Mediterranean Sea View 2017, features empty orange life jackets symbolising European bound migrants who drowned.

    Donated by the artist the paintings had been estimated at £800,000-1.2 million. They were the focus of spirited bidding. Since being created they have hung above the fireplace of Banksy’s Walled Off Hotel in Bethlehem in Jerusalem’s West Bank. The proceeds will go towards a new acute stroke unit and children’s rehabilitation equipment at the Bethlehem Arab Society for Rehabilitation.

    The flagship summer Rembrandt to Richter sale realised £150 million.

    One of the works in detail

    NEW RECORD FOR A REMBRANDT SELF PORTRAIT AT SOTHEBY’S

    Tuesday, July 28th, 2020

    A small self-portrait by Rembrandt van Rijn made £14,549,400 setting a new auction record for a self-portrait by the artist at auction at Sotheby’s marquee sale in London today. It was chased by six bidders. The previous record of £6.9 million for a self-portrait by the artist was in 2003.  

    Rembrandt recorded his own physiognomy in no fewer than 80 paintings, etchings and drawings, throughout his career. Dated to 1632, this self-portrait of the artist aged 26-years, was created at a pivotal moment in his life, when he was just establishing himself in Amsterdam and enjoying new-found commercial success. The work is one of only two self-portraits in which he shows himself formally dressed. Self-portrait, wearing a ruff and black hat is one of only three remaining in private hands. Sotheby’s believe it is the only one ever likely to come to auction.

    BALFOUR DECLARATION RECALLED AT SOTHEBY’S BOOK SALE

    Tuesday, July 28th, 2020

    A signed menu from a 1927 dinner at London’s Savoy to mark the tenth anniversary of The Balfour Declaration comes up at Sotheby’s Books and Manuscripts sale which opens today and runs until August 4. The 1917 declaration was a statement from the British government announcing support for the establishment of “a national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine, then an Ottoman region with a minority Jewish population. The declaration was in a letter from then Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour to Lord Rothschild, a leader of the British Jewish community. The menu is signed by guests including Balfour, Nahum Sokolow (chairman of the World Zionist executive), the physicist Sir Ernest Rutherford, James de Rothschild and P.M.W. MacDonagh, almost certainly the Limerick born Irish journalist Michael MacDonagh. It is estimated at £400-600.

    UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £2,394

    ART FROM THE BRITISH AIRWAYS COLLECTION AT SOTHEBY’S

    Tuesday, July 14th, 2020

    Cool Edge by Bridget Riley from 1982 from the British Airways collection comes up at Sotheby’s later this month. They will offer 17 paintings, prints and works on paper from the collection across two auctions in London. Riley’s stripe painting comes up at the cross-category Evening Sale, “Rembrandt to Richter”, on July 28 with an estimate of £800,000-1.2 million.

    There will be seven further screen prints by Riley Sotheby’s including five works from her Elongated Triangles series of 1971 at Sotheby’s sale of Modern and Post War British Art from July 20-23. These will be offered alongside paintings by Terry Frost, Patrick Heron and George Shaw. The remainder of the collection includes prints by Damien Hirst, Marc Quinn and Julian Opie from 2000, and Peter Doig’s Grasshopper Portfolio, a series of ten etchings drawn from the ground-level perspective of a grasshopper.

    Bridget RileyCool Edge. UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £1,850,000 at hammer.

    FLAGSHIP SUMMER SALES AT SOTHEBY’S REACH NEARLY $900 MILLION

    Sunday, July 12th, 2020

    The combined total for Sotheby’s flagship summer sales in Paris, Geneva, New York and Hong Kong has reached almost US$900 million. In Hong Kong last week 3,794 lots sold across 17 auctions in seven days. The re-scheduled spring sales brought in US$411 million with global participation from nearly 40 countries and 90% of lots sold over the phone, on the internet or through absentee bids. Sanyu’s Quatre Nus was sold fr US$33.3 million after a four-way ten-minute bidding battle.

    Sanyu – Quatre Nus

    UNSEEN WORKS FROM THE EUROPEAN AVANT-GARDE

    Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

    Over 40 paintings, sculpture and works on paper – led by a Cubist work by Léger and a Picasso Portrait of his lover Marie-Thérèse – from a family collection will come up at Sotheby’s in London this July. Eighteen works will be offered in the cross-category evening sale on July 28, in which exceptional examples of Old Masters – including one of the last self-portraits by Rembrandt in private hands – Impressionist and Modern art, Modern British and Contemporary art will be presented together for the first time. A further twenty-four works from this collection will be offered in the Impressionist & Modern Art Online sale, open for bidding from July 20 – 27. 

    Helena Newman, Worldwide Head of Sotheby’s Impressionist & Modern Art Department, said: “Put together with passion and enjoyed over many years, this private collection encapsulates exactly what collectors long for – quality and rarity in works that can be, and have been, lived with and loved. Unified by the breadth and depth of art from across Europe, it offers seldom seen works from the pinnacle of the Avant-Garde, from the figurative to the abstract. At its core is an exceptionally beautiful 1931 portrait of Picasso’s lover, Marie-Thérèse, an intimate glimpse into their early days together when the love between the artist and his most important muse was still a secret from the world”.

    The first decades of the twentieth century would change the course of art history for ever. This treasure-trove from a private collection – little known and rarely seen – spans the remarkable period, telling its story through the leading protagonists, from Fernand Léger, Pablo Picasso and Alberto Giacometti to Wassily Kandinsky, Lyonel Feininger and Alexej von Jawlensky. Travelling across the continent, the works emphasise the crosscurrents and connections that united Europe, from France to Germany to Britain.

    Pablo Picasso – Femme endormie (1931) (£6-9 million). UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR £7,316,750

    BACON TRIPTYCH SELLS FOR $84.6 MILLION AT LIVE STREAMED EVENT

    Tuesday, June 30th, 2020

    Francis Bacon’s Triptych Inspired by the Oresteia of Aeschylus sold for $84.6 million at Sotheby’s live streamed global sale overnight. There was a ten minute bidding battle between an online bidder in Asia and a client bidding by phone with Gregoire Billault of Sotheby’s in New York. It went to the phone bidder for a price surpassing the $80 million high estimate.

    The sale, which totalled $363.2 million, was conducted remotely by auctioneer Oliver Barker in London taking bids from phone banks in New York, Hong Kong and London and online bidders.

    There were auction records for Mario Carreño, Vija Celmins, Leonor Fini, Helen Frankenthaler, Wifredo Lam, Alice Rahon, Remedios Varo, Matthew Wong and Jean-Michel Basquiat for a work on paper. The auctions offered a strong selection of works by women artists, with all 25 works offered by 16 artists selling for a total of $86.1 million, and setting five new world auction records.

    BACON TRIPTYCH SOLD FOR $84.6 million

    A GLOBAL SALES SERIES AVAILABLE EVERYWHERE

    Wednesday, June 17th, 2020

    While in some ways the June sales at Sotheby’s in New York mark the return to business as usual they have been completely re–imagined. Significant offerings of high value material will be brought to the market in flagship live sales conducted remotely by Oliver Barker in London. The New York Impressionist & Modern and Contemporary evening sales will be live-streamed to the world. Bidders will be able to take part either via the phones or online in the usual way. This truly global experience will usher in a new era of marquee auctions that marry the best of the established live auction format with the latest technology, and the modifications for safety that current circumstances require.

    IF by Sean Scully at the Contemporary Art evening auctions ($700,000-900,000). UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR $1,280,000