Presenting an array of extraordinary art and objects from antiquity to the 20th century across 14 sales, Classic Week at Christies
London in December 2018 collectively realised £87,567,251/ $111,164,865/ 97,808,053. The top lot of the series was Lucas van Leydens very rare drawing, A young man standing, which sparked fierce competition between three bidders, resulting in it selling for £11,483,750/ $14,607,330/ 12,827,349, in the Old Masters/ New Scholars: Works of Art Sold to Benefit Rugby School sale, setting a new record for the artist and far exceeding its pre-sale estimate (in the region of £1.5 million). This was followed by the finest pair of portraits by Frans Hals to remain together in private hands, offered from The Eric Albada Jelgersma Collection, which sold for £10,021,250/ $12,747,030/ 11,233,821, setting a new world record price for the artist at auction (estimate: £8-12 million).
Exceptional results for Collections were evident throughout, with: Property from Descendants of Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones in the British Art: Victorian, Pre-Raphaelite & British Impressionist Art sale, selling 100% by lot and by value, realising £582,500; The Eric Albada Jelgersma Collection, including the Important Old Master Pictures Evening Sale realising an overall total of £24,931,688, with the Collection Sale selling 91% by lot and 92% by value; An Adventurous Spirit: An Important Private Collection Sold to Benefit a Charitable Foundation realising £8,626,188, selling 85% by lot and 93% by value five major paintings from the Collection by Paul Signac, Gustave Caillebotte, Félix Vallotton, Edouard Vuillard and Giovanni Boldini are yet to be offered and will be highlights of the Impressionist and Modern Art Evening Sale on 27 February 2019; Old Masters/ New Scholars: Works of Art Sold to Benefit Rugby School totalling £14,794,125, selling 83% by lot and 99% by value. Outside of Classic Week, this success with Collections was mirrored in Paris with Cest Fou! (12-14 December) which totalled £8,274,713, selling 84% by lot and 87% by value.
Overall, 16 records were achieved across Classic Week with new world record prices for the artist set for Frans Hals, Lucas van Leyden, Judith Leyster, Sir Thomas Lawrence, Jan Baptist Weenix, Werner van den Valckert, Francis Harwood, Archibald James Stuart Wortley, Alfred Dever, Chevalier Eduardo Frederico de Martino. Two new records for the author were achieved for Karl Marx and Adam Smith, with Wealth of Nations selling to an Asian buyer. Four new records for the medium were realised: for a work on paper by Sir Edward Poynter P.R.A. and Michel Jean Cazabon and for drawings by Raffaellino del Garbo and Antonio Allegri da Correggio. The sales also saw the second highest price at auction achieved for a work by Pieter Brueghel the Younger.
CLASSIC WEEK BY NUMBERS
Christies December 2018 Classic Week total: £87,567,251/ $111,164,865/ 97,808,053
Registered bidders from 72 countries a 14% increase on Classic Week in December 2017
15% of registered bidders registered across multiple sales, with 25% of them registering to bid in three or more auctions
16% of registered bidders were new to Christies
Over 21,600 visitors to Christies King Street a 20% increase on Classic Week in December 2017
16 world record prices at auction set for artists or mediums