Christie's sale of post-war and
Contemporary art sale held on May 15 in New York yielded a total of $538.9
million, against a global estimate of $422 million to $605 million after two
lots were withdrawn..
Of the 56 total lots offered, 51 of them,
or 91 percent, sold. The private collection of Robert and Beatrice Mayer
realized $157 million while works belonging to the late publishing
magnate S.I. Newhouse accounted for $115 million of the sale total.
Estimated at $50 million, Robert
Rauschenberg's silkscreen painting Buffalo
II (1964) rose to 88.5 million inclusive of premium, smashing the
artist's previous auction record of $18 million while Jeff Koon's stainless
steel Rabbit (1986),
estimated at $50 million to $70 million, culminated at a record 91 million, well
over his previous mark of 58 million to make him most expensive
living artist at the expense of David Hockney.
Estimated between 50 and
70 million, Andy Warhol, Double Elvis [Ferus Type] (1963) only
sold for $ 53 million while Louise Bourgeois's Spider (conceived
in 1996, cast in 1997), estimated at $25 million to $35 million, sold at $32
million with premium, also a new record for the artist at auction.
Warhol's Little Electric Chair(1964-65)
from the Newhouse collection fetched $7
million, against a presale estimate of $6 million to $8 million, sold for $8.2
million with premium and an early portrait of Liz Taylor from the Mayer
collection went for 19.3 million against an estimate of 20 to 30 million while
Tom Wesselmann's Great American Nude #26
(1962), reached $2.4 million.
Acquired for 198.000 USD in 1987 at Sotheby's
New York, Alexander Calder's hanging mobile with colored glass, Fish (circa
1952), estimated at $12.5 million to $16.5 million sold for $17.5 million with
Richard Prince's Untitled (The Velvets) (2007),
a diptych collage sold for $1.1 million with premium and KAW's 2009 “Smurf”
painting, Kurfs (Tangle) smashed its estimate of $600,000 to $800,000, to sell
for $2.6 million.
Meanwhile, new records were set for Larry
Rivers at 1.2 million, Frank Stella at $28 million, Daniel Buren at 2.1 million
and Jonas Wood at 4.9 million.