ART MARKET ANALYSIS 2020
Christie’s Global Sale achieved excellent results with only 9% BI. From Hong Kong (with headliners such as Richter, Grotjahn and Condo); to Paris’ most expensive artists (including Pierre Soulages as he nears his 100th birthday who sold at 6,5M EUR); to Britain’s most sought after young painter, Cecily Brown (4,8M GBP) in London. But the real show-stoppers were reserved for the final stage in New York.
Sotheby’s Evening sale carried the lowest presale estimate since 2009, and, while realizing £49.9 M against a £41.8 M – £59.6 M estimate, with just four lots going unsold; this Evening sale was down by 36.7% against laste year. Sotheby’s relied heavily on three works that had been looted by the Nazis and restored to Gaston Lévy, including the highest estimated lot this year: an £8 M – £12 M neo-Impressionist Camille Pissarro painting of peasants working in a field.
Sotheby’s Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening sale featured Hockney’s The Splash which fetched £21M (without premium), barely reaching the low estimate of £20M. Still, the price is nearly eight times the achieved when the work last sold at auction for £2.9 million in 2006. A good result for the Hong Kong billionaire seller, Joseph Lau, who in 2014 was convicted of bribery and money-laundering in Macao.