announced that their 2018 sales totaled $7 billion (including 653.3 million in
private transactions), up six percent from 2017, however below results achieved
in 2014 ($8.4 billion) and 2015 ($7.4 billion).
reached $87 million, 16 percent more than in 2017 with 32 percent of all buyers
new to the auction house.
Christie's sold the collection of the late Peggy and David Rockefeller, which
generated a total of $832.6 million, and the collection of the late travel
magnate Barney Ebsworth, which made $323.1 million. Combined, they accounted
for more than 16 percent of Christie's total reported sales.
estates carried a financial guarantee, meaning they were essentially pre-sold
ahead of time.Among the highest-priced works sold in 2018 were Edward Hopper's Chop
Suey (1929), which achieved $91.9 million
and David Hockney‘s
poolside scene, Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures) (1972),
which went for $90.3 million, a price making Hockney the most expensive living
artist at auction ahead of Jeff Koons.
Another record was
the price of just under $31 million paid in October for a gypsum relief of a Winged Genius (circa
883–859 BC) made for the palace of Ashurnasirpal II, marking the second-highest
price ever paid for a work of ancient art.
sales in Asia totaled $815.4 million, a five percent increase over 2017. The
result was surprising in view of China's slow economic growth last year where
auction sales declined by 16.2 percent in 2018.
buyers accounted for 25 percent of total global sales (including in New York
and London) and more than half (57 percent) of their spending was for works
outside of the Asian art sales category. On the other hand, sales fell eight
percent, to $1.8 billion, in Europe and the Middle East, two regions
experiencing both political and economic problems.
Sotheby's posted preliminary global auction sales of $5.3 billion and private
sales of $675 million for the first nine months of the year.