Records tumbled this season in the highest-grossing flagship summer auctions that Sothebys
London has ever seen. Together, sales in the four key categories of Old Masters, Impressionist & Modern, Contemporary Art and Treasures totalled a record £360 million - with top estimates repeatedly smashed and record numbers of participants engaging in the sales.
The strong results were fuelled by a burgeoning interest from collectors from the new markets - many of whom are making their presence ever more strongly felt in Sothebys London salerooms, their interest constantly expanding into an ever broader range of fields.
The excitement in Sothebys New Bond Street salesrooms these last few weeks confirms London as a key centre for the international art market. A record 1,800 participants from 72 countries were active in this seasons sales, and with first-time bidders coming from new fewer than 30 different countries.
Mark Cornell, Managing Director, Sothebys Europe, said: The record successes we have enjoyed in London this summer are the fruit of the combination of old rules and new players. Old rules still apply: quality, rarity, provenance and correct estimates are key, and new players care just as much about those criteria as established collectors. It is the confluence of rich offerings and ever-more global demand that has proved so powerful this season, and that will continue to power the market forward.
OLD RULES + NEW PLAYERS = TOP RESULTS
Quality material at the right estimates consistently outperforms:
Over 50% of the material sold this season came from eminent private collections
A record level of lots sold over their high estimates over 50%
A record number of bidders from New Markets
Asian collectors competed for the top lots in each of our evening sales: Monets Nymphéas, Bacons Three Studies for Portrait of George Dyer, and Stubbss Tygers at Play
First-time bidders came from 30 different countries
Over 25% of bidders were either new to Sothebys or transacting in a new category
A record level of bidding across the summer sales season
A record 1,791 participants, coming from 72 countries
Highest ever total for an Old Master & British Paintings Evening Sale at Sothebys London: £68.3 million ($117.1 million)
Highest ever total for a Decorative Arts sale at Sothebys London: Treasures sale totals £23.6million ($40.4million)
Sothebys achieves the two top price across London auctions this season:
Highest price: Claude Monet, Nymphéas (1906) sold for £31,722,500 ($54,071,001) (also the highest global price for Impressionist & Modern Art in two years)
Second highest price: Francis Bacon, Three Studies for Portrait of George Dyer (1964) sold for £26,682,500 ($45,400,274) (also the highest ever price for a work of Contemporary art sold at Sothebys London)
A record 67 lots sold for over £1million