Monday, March 14, 2011

Auction Results: Contemporary Art, March 9, 2011 @Sotheby's

The results for the photography in Sotheby's lower end Contemporary Art auction last week were altogether lackluster. With a Buy-In rate over 40% and just one positive surprise, it is no wonder the Total Sale Proceeds missed the low end of the range by a significant margin.

The summary statistics are below (all results include the buyer’s premium):

Total Lots: 39
Pre Sale Low Total Estimate: $497000
Pre Sale High Total Estimate: $712000
Total Lots Sold: 22
Total Lots Bought In: 17
Buy In %: 43.59%
Total Sale Proceeds: $371501
Here is the breakdown (using the Low, Mid, and High definitions from the preview post, here):

Low Total Lots: 13
Low Sold: 8
Low Bought In: 5
Buy In %: 38.46%
Total Low Estimate: $93000
Total Low Sold: $70001
Mid Total Lots: 25
Mid Sold: 13
Mid Bought In: 12
Buy In %: 48.00%
Total Mid Estimate: $559000
Total Mid Sold: $215000
High Total Lots: 1
High Sold: 1
High Bought In: 0
Buy In %: 0.00%
Total High Estimate: $60000
Total High Sold: $86500
The top photography lot by High estimate was lot 19, Cindy Sherman, Untitled #109, 1982, at $40000-60000; it was also the top outcome of the sale at $86500. (Image at right, top, via Sotheby's.)
95.45% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range. There was only 1 surprise in this sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate):

Lot 169, Shirin Neshat, I am its Secret, 1993, at $22500 (image at right, via Sotheby's)
Complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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