Christie’s London Evening Auction of Post-War & Contemporary Art Realises £132.8m / $207.3m / €165.8m - The Highest Ever Result for the Category at any Auction House in Europe
Yves Klein’s Le Rose du bleu sells for £23.5M ($36.7M / € 29.4M)
A new world record for a French post-war artist at auction
4 lots sold above £10 million / 5 lots sold above $10 million
5 new world artist records were established
Christie's Post-War & Contemporary Art Evening Auction totalled £132,819,400 ($207,331,083 / €165,891,431), selling 98% by value and 87% by lot. This is the highest total for any auction of Post-War & Contemporary Art in Europe. The top lot of the sale was Yves Klein’s Le Rose du bleu (RE 22), which sold for £23,561,250 ($36,779,111 / €29,428,001; illustrated above), a world record price for any French post-war artist at auction. In total, 4 lots sold above £10 million / 21 lots sold above £1 million and record prices were established for David Altmejd, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Marcel Broodthaers, Yves Klein and Beatriz Milhazes.
Francis Outred, Christie's Head of Post-War & Contemporary Art, Europe: “Following the record result achieved at Christie's New York in May, we are delighted with tonight results which established a new record for an auction of Post-War & Contemporary Art in Europe. Totalling more than £132.8 million, at the foundation of the auction’s success were five masterworks by Yves Klein, Francis Bacon, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Gerhard Richter. The price for the Bacon was particularly satisfactory following the discovery that this self-portrait carries the body of Lucian Freud. Overall we brought together consignments from four continents, reached buyers on four continents and benefitted from a depth and strength of bidding from across the room and on the phone”.