POST-WAR AND CONTEMPORARY ART EVENING SALE ACHIEVES HIGHEST TOTAL IN AUCTION HISTORY
HISTORIC $495 MILLION SALE SETS 16 NEW WORLD AUCTION RECORDS FOR ARTISTS INCLUDING ASAWA, BASQUIAT, GUSTON, LICHTENSTEIN, MANZONI AND POLLOCK
Christie’s Evening Sale of Post-War and Contemporary Art set a new benchmark for the art market on Wednesday, becoming the highest sale total in auction history at $495 million. Throughout the night, bidders from around the world competed for Abstract Expressionist, Pop and Contemporary masterpieces by the foremost artists of the last six decades, including Pollock, Lichtenstein, Basquiat and Rothko. The top lot of the sale was Pollock’s Number 19, 1948, which more than doubled its low estimate to achieve $58,363,750. It was one of 16 new world auction records for the evening. The role of provenance remained as important as ever, as property from the Estate of Andy Williams and the Collection of Celeste and Armand Bartos drew $46 million and $30.2 million, respectively. In total, 3 works sold above $40 million, 9 above $10 million, 23 above $5 million, and 59 above $1 million. Combined with Monday’s charity auction with the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation, The 11th Hour, this week’s Evening Sales at Christie’s have realized a staggering $528.3 million.