Classic Week

Classic Week at Christie’s concluded on 13 July achieving a total of £109,038,888 / $141,931,118 / €128,048,200, having welcomed over 19,000 visitors to view the diverse displays and auctions which spanned the Decorative Arts, Antiquities, Old Master & British Paintings, Prints and Drawings, Books and Manuscripts and The Exceptional Sale. The week realised a strong average sell-through rate of 87% by value across the 14 sales, anticipating the market for each price point and category. Increased international participation saw over 1,000 registered bidders from 50 countries, 695 registered online bidders and substantial cross-category buying with over 700 active bidders across the week, including collectors of 20th Century art. Christie’s achieved seven of the top ten auction prices of the season across all houses, underlining its leading position in the market. The auctions were highlighted by the memorable sale of Rubens’s masterpiece Lot and his Daughters, which achieved the highest price for a work of art at auction this year.


  • A Wedgwood ‘First Day’s Vase’ from 1769

    Matilda Burn, a Christie’s specialist in Decorative Arts, tells the story behind one of only four surviving vases potted by Josiah Wedgwood on the opening day of the Etruria Factory

  • Buried for up to 2,000 years

    Specialist Laetitia Delaloye gives an expert introduction to Roman glass — from miniature perfume bottles to blown glass drinking vessels

  • ‘Masterful’: A rare Cycladic figure from the 3rd Millennium B.C.

    Specialist Laetitia Delaloye discusses a mysterious 4,000-year-old marble figure, offered in our Antiquities sale at Christie’s London on 6 July

  • ‘The perfect line’: How Rembrandt made some of his greatest works

    Artist Alexander Massouras demonstrates how the techniques behind some of history’s greatest prints remain unchanged — almost 400 years on

  • A Rubens masterpiece up-close

    Art critic Alastair Sooke and Christie’s specialist Clementine Sinclair discuss the ’spellbinding’ Lot and His Daughters

  • A piece of musical history

    Musician Jakob Lindberg discusses a rare manuscript, hand-written by one of the 17th century’s greatest composers, Johann Sebastian Bach

  • The words on which modern Ireland was built

    One hundred years after the Easter Rising, specialist Thomas Venning examines a copy of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic — and meets a descendent of one of its signatories

  • ‘The greatest flower book in the world’

    Horticulturist and TV presenter Alys Fowler discusses ‘The Besler Botanical’, a previously unrecorded copy an early 17th-century book documenting one of history’s finest gardens

  • Classic Week at Christie’s London

    A series of sales from 5 to 13 July, featuring outstanding pieces by Rubens, Rembrandt and Rossetti, plus an extraordinary Augsburg table-cabinet, exquisite Meissen porcelain and Bach’s autograph manuscript BWV 998

All videos

A Wedgwood ‘First Day’s Vase’ from 1769

Buried for up to 2,000 years

‘Masterful’: A rare Cycladic figure from the 3rd Millennium B.C.

‘The perfect line’: How Rembrandt made some of his greatest works

A Rubens masterpiece up-close

A piece of musical history

The words on which modern Ireland was built

‘The greatest flower book in the world’

Classic Week at Christie’s London

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Christie’s 250th Anniversary

2016 marks Christie’s 250th anniversary, and this historic year will be celebrated with a series of events and exhibitions. As the world’s leading art business, Christie’s has long been acknowledged as a tastemaker, continually innovating its auction calendar and curating sales to foster new collecting trends and perspectives on the art market.

Defining British Art: Evening Sale & Loan Exhibition

This summer, Christie’s launches its 250th anniversary celebrations in London with the Defining British Art Evening Sale. This landmark auction will celebrate the artistic legacy of four centuries of British artists, building on the success of Christie’s pioneering curated Evening Sales – notably Looking Forward to the Past and The Artist’s Muse in 2015.

A further highlight of our anniversary celebrations, the Defining British Art Loan Exhibition on view from 17 June to 15 July at King Street, showcases works by some of the greatest British artists, alongside masterpieces by international artists inspired by visits to Britain.