• Press release
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  • London
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  • For immediate release
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  • 1 March 2022

In a Market First, Christie's Historic Shanghai to London Sale Series Realises £249,070,155 / RMB 2,087,955,108 / $334,003,078/ € 297,389,765
A Record for Any Evening at Christie's London

1 March 2022

20/21 Shanghai to London


• Franz Marc’s The Foxes (Die Füchse), a seminal work by a father of 20th Century Modernism sold for £42,654,500, breaking the record for the artist, and is now among the top 5 selling works offered in London in the last decade. Francis Bacon’s Triptych 1986-7 sold for £38,459,206, one of the top ten price achieved in London in the last decade
• Sell-through rates of 90% by lot and 93% by value demonstrate the global appetite for art from the 20th and 21st centuries, and confidence in the market for 2022
• As part of Christie’s continuing innovation around the 20/21 platform, a cultural dialogue was instigated between major international art hubs in tonight’s auction marking a historic moment in a first of its kind relay auction between Shanghai and London
• Christie’s is the only international auction house licensed to operate auctions in Mainland China
• The 20th / 21st Century: Shanghai Evening Sale inaugurated Christie’s new galleries at BUND ONE, No. 1 East Zhongshan Road
• Spirited international bidding delivered record prices, which were achieved for 10 artists including Franz Marc, Mario Schifano, Emmanuel Taku, Genieve Figgis, Gabriele Münter and Eugène Boudin
• Lucian Freud’s intimate masterpiece Girl with Closed Eyes realised £15,174,500
• Antony Gormley’s Root, offered as part of Artists for ClientEarth, brought the total raised for the environmental charity to £4,989,064 (hammer price) to date
• The Art of the Surreal Evening Sale, the only platform dedicated to the art of the Surreal and Dada, realised a total of £39,888,380
• Picasso’s surrealist masterpiece, La fenêtre ouverte, led the 21st edition of The Art of the Surreal Evening Sale (£16,319,500)

Shanghai and London – Christie’s historic Shanghai to London sale series established a pioneering cultural dialogue between two of the art market’s major hubs, achieving a total of £249,070,155 / RMB 2,087,955,108 / $334,003,078 / €297,389,765. Sell-through rates of 90% by lot and 93% by value demonstrate the confidence of the market, building on the successes we witnessed in 2021.

Across the three sales, registered bidders from 34 countries and 5 continents reflect the strength of global demand, with 21% of buyers from Americas, 31% APAC and 49% EMEA. Millennial collectors accounted for 28% of registrants to the auctions.

Shanghai to London led with museum quality paintings by Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, Franz Marc, and Pablo Picasso:
• Franz Marc’s The Foxes (Die Füchse) sold for £42,654,500, setting a new world auction record for the artist and the highest price ever achieved in Europe for a restituted work of art. A masterpiece of Modernism, the painting has graced several great collections over the course of its life, most recently the Kunstpalast Museum in Dusseldorf, before its restitution to the heirs of Kurt and Else Grawi
• The sale of Francis Bacon’s Triptych 1986-7, which realised £38,459,206, coincides with the Royal Academy’s seminal exhibition ‘Francis Bacon: Man and Beast’ in London
• Pablo Picasso’s surrealist masterpiece, La fenêtre ouverte, a self-portrait of the artist with his great muse Marie-Thérèse, offered at auction for the first time, led The Art of the Surreal Evening Sale (£16,319,500)
• Lucian Freud’s intimate and tender portrait, Girl with Closed Eyes (1986-87) made its auction debut, selling for £15,174,500

Shanghai’s inaugural sale in Bund One realised a total of RMB 222,030,200, selling 95% by lot and 90% by value – an increase of 50% since our last sale there in 2019. The sale was highlighted by Jean-Michel Basquiat’s II Duce (RMB 94,160,000). Further top lots included Le soir à l ’Hôtel du Palais by Zao Wou-Ki (RMB 24,360,000), Kees van Dongen’s La femme au collier, (RMB 23,160,000) on the artist’s auction debut in China, and Marc Chagall’s Le bouquet de lilas (RMB 18,960,000).

The Shanghai sale included a series of works by contemporary artists, which drew competitive bidding:
• Emmanuel Taku’s Ripped achieved a world auction record for the artist realising RMB 1,638,000, more than eight times the pre-sale estimate of RMB 200,000 – 300,000
• Ewa Juszkiewicz’s Untitled was pursued by international bidders before selling for RMB 3,276,000
• Joel Mesler’s Untitled (You Deserve Great Things) saw multiple telephone bidders chase the painting to a record price of RMB 5,670,000
• Scott Kahn’s Into the Woods sold for RMB 5,670,000
• Debutants Ball by Genieve Figgis achieved a world auction record for the artist selling for RMB 4,032,000
• Amoako Boafo Orange Shirt achieved RMB 8,760,000

Further highlights of the 20th/ 21st Century London auction included:
Flora Yukhnovich’s Tu vas me faire rougir (You’re going to make me blush), derived from Jean-Honoré Fragonard’s The Swing (1767), sold for £1,902,000, more than seven times the pre-sale estimate
• Jadé Fadojutimi’s Acquainted Intruder sold for £942,000
• World of Women, Woman #5672, a rare NFT created by an artist and an online community on a mission to rebalance gender representation in the digital realm, sold for £567,000
• Pablo Picasso’s Le repas frugal achieved £6,014,500, a world record for any print at auction
• Peter Doig’s Some Houses on Iron Hill attracted spirited bidding from London, New York and Shanghai on the telephones and via Christie’s Live, selling for £2,442,000, more than four times the pre-sale estimate

Records were witnessed in Christie’s salerooms in Shanghai, London, New York and Hong Kong:
Emmanuel Taku, Ripped, RMB 1,638,000
• Joel Mesler, Untitled (You Deserve Great Things), RMB 5,670,000
• Genieve Figgis, Debutants Ball, RMB 4,032,000
• Victor Man, D with Raven, £214,200
• Angel Otero, Riders on the Storm, £252,000
• Billy Childish, toward a shore, £163,800
• Gabriele Münter, Gelbes Haus mit Apfelbaum (recto); Landschaft (verso), £1,782,000
• Franz Marc, The Foxes (Die Füchse), £42,654,500
• Eugène Boudin, La plage de Trouville, £2,262,000
• Mario Schifano, Grande Particolare, £882,000

The 21st edition of The Art of the Surreal, the only auction platform dedicated to the art of Surreal and Dada artists, achieved a total of £39,888,380, selling 100% by lot and 100% by value. Led by Pablo Picasso’s La fenêtre ouverte, the sale was also highlighted by:
• René Magritte’s La lumière du pôle sold for £5,993,500, while La meditation realised £2,922,000
• Paul Delvaux’s Le soir tombe sold for £1,902,000
• Joan Miró’s Personnage, oiseau, étoile dans un paysage realised £3,042,000, while Personnage et oiseau achieved £2,322,000
• Other strong results for surrealist artists included Tanguy and Dalí

Antony Gormley’s Root achieved £350,000 (hammer price), to benefit the environmental charity ClientEarth, as part of the initiative with the Gallery Climate Coalition, Artists for ClientEarth, which has raised a total of £4,989,064 (hammer price) to date. Other charitable sales this evening included Fernand Léger’s Composition which realised £6,243,500, with proceeds benefitting Volkart Foundation and Pablo Picasso’s Jeune homme de profil from The Berggruen Family Collection, which sold for £233,100 to benefit New York’s Carnegie Hall.

For further commentary on the sale series, please read the post-sale report on

Christie’s 20th Century Art Sales continue on 2 March with Post-War and Contemporary Art Day Sale. The Impressionist and Modern Art Day and Works on Paper Sale takes place on 4 March while First Open: Post-War and Contemporary Art Online remains open for bidding until 9 March 2022.

About Christie’s

Founded in 1766, Christie’s is a world-leading art and luxury business. Renowned and trusted for its expert live and online auctions, as well as its bespoke private sales, Christie’s offers a full portfolio of global services to its clients, including art appraisal, art financing, international real estate and education. Christie’s has a physical presence in 46 countries, throughout the Americas, Europe, Middle East, and Asia Pacific, with flagship international sales hubs in New York, London, Hong Kong, Paris and Geneva. It also is the only international auction house authorized to hold sales in mainland China (Shanghai).

Christie’s auctions span more than 80 art and luxury categories, at price points ranging from $200 to over $100 million. Christie’s has sold 8 of the 10 most important single-owner collections in history, including the Paul G. Allen Collection—the most valuable collection ever offered at auction (November 2022). In recent years, Christie’s has achieved the world record price for an artwork at auction (Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, 2017), for a 20th century artwork (Andy Warhol’s Shot Sage Blue Marilyn, 2022) and for a work by a living artist (Jeff Koons’ Rabbit, 2019). 

Christie’s Private Sales offers a seamless service for buying and selling art, jewellery and watches outside of the auction calendar, working exclusively with Christie’s specialists at a client’s individual pace.

Recent innovations at Christie’s include the groundbreaking sale of the first NFT for a digital work of art ever offered at a major auction house (Beeple’s Everydays, March 2021), with the unprecedented acceptance of cryptocurrency as a means of payment. As an industry leader in digital innovation, Christie’s also continues to pioneer new technologies that are redefining the business of art, including use of hologram technology to tour life-size 3D objects around the world, and the creation of viewing and bidding experiences that integrate augmented reality, global livestreaming, buy-now channels, and hybrid sales formats. 

Christie’s is dedicated to advancing responsible culture throughout its business and communities worldwide, including achieving sustainability by reducing our carbon emissions by 50% and pledging to be net zero by 2030, and actively using its platform in the art world to amplify under-represented voices and support positive change.

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