Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Auction Results: Contemporary Art Evening and Day Sales, February 15 and 16, 2011 @Sotheby's London

Sotheby's began the 2011 photography auction season with solid outcomes at its Contemporary Art sales in London last week. All 6 of the photographs in the Evening sale found buyers, helping boost the Total Sale Proceeds above the Total Pre-Sale High Estimate. With an overall Buy-In rate across the two sales under 18%, it was an auspicious start to the season. The only hiccup was the "Orgy of the Rich" protest which disrupted the sale (coverage here via Hyperallergic).

The summary statistics are below (all results include the buyer’s premium):
Total Lots: 28
Pre Sale Low Total Estimate: £2094000
Pre Sale High Total Estimate: £2967000
Total Lots Sold: 23
Total Lots Bought In: 5
Buy In %: 17.86%
Total Sale Proceeds: £3037950

Here is the breakdown (using the Low, Mid, and High definitions from the preview post, here):

Low Total Lots: 0
Low Sold: NA
Low Bought In: NA
Buy In %: NA
Total Low Estimate: £0
Total Low Sold: NA

Mid Total Lots: 12
Mid Sold: 10
Mid Bought In: 2
Buy In %: 16.67%
Total Mid Estimate: £182000
Total Mid Sold: £198100

High Total Lots: 16
High Sold: 13
High Bought In: 3
Buy In %: 18.75%
Total High Estimate: £2785000
Total High Sold: £2839850

The top lot by High estimate was lot 3, Cindy Sherman, Untitled #87, 1981, at £400000-600000; it was also the top outcome of the sale at £577250.

An efficient 100.00% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above their estimate. There were only two surprises in these sales (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate):

Lot 187, Candida Höfer, Biblioteca Seminario Patriarcale Venezia II, 2002, at £43250 (image at right, bottom, via Sotheby's)
Lot 267, Andy Warhol, Beware of Dog, 1976-1986, at £91250 (image at right, top, via Sotheby's)

Complete lot by lot results can be found here (Evening) and here (Day).
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