Auc­tion prices all shook up

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS -

NEW YORK: Christie’s has held the big­gest art auc­tion in his­tory, sell­ing $853 mil­lion (R9.6 bil­lion) worth of con­tem­po­rary and post-war art, led by a pair of Andy Warhol works fea­tur­ing mul­ti­ple images of Elvis Pres­ley and Mar­lon Brando.

The im­pres­sive haul beat Christie’s high pre-sale es­ti­mate of $836m. It was the fourth suc­ces­sive time since May last year that the auc­tion house’s post-war and con­tem­po­rary sale broke the record for the high­est-to­tal of a sin­gle sale.

A bid­ding war drove Warhol’s Triple Elvis (Ferus Type) to $81.9m, while Four Mar­lons fetched $69.6m to lead the sale of 80 works on Wed­nes­day in a packed sale­room where only five works failed to find buy­ers.

“This is a mar­ket driven by global col­lec­tors who are look­ing for the best of the best,” said Brett Gorvy, in­ter­na­tional head of post-war and con­tem­po­rary art. “More than about records, it’s about five, six or seven buy­ers com­pet­ing to spend $50m or $60m on an ob­ject.”

A new record was set for Cy Twombly, when an un­ti­tled 1970 work soared beyond the $35m to $55m es­ti­mate to $69.6m, more than tripling the old record.

Records were also set for Ed Ruscha, Martin Kip­pen­berger and Cindy Sher­man at the block­buster sale, which capped two weeks of key auc­tions for pow­er­houses Christie’s and Sotheby’s. – Reuters


Christie’s em­ploy­ees stand near two Andy Warhol por­traits, Triple Elvis, left, and Four Mar­lons.

A 1963 silkscreen ink and acrylic on can­vas por­trait of ac­tress El­iz­a­beth Tay­lor by Andy Warhol ti­tled, Liz #3

(Early Col­ored Liz) was sold by Sotheby’s for $31.5 mil­lion.

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