Sotheby's sale of Contemporary art held on
May 16 in New York yielded just under 342 million USD, far below the 538.9
million USD reaped by Christie's the previous night, with two works by Francis
Bacon and one Rothko accounting for 115 million of that total.
56 of the 63 lots in the catalogue found
buyers, producing a strong 89 percent sell-through rate with records for Carl
André, Kenneth Noland, Lee Krasner,Charles Gaines, Barkley L. Hendricks, Rashid
Johnson, and Dana Schutz.
Francis Bacon's Study for a Head (1952)
from the Seattle-based collection of Richard E. Lang and Jane Lang Davis smashed
its pre-sale high estimate of $30 million to reach $50.4 million with premium while the second Bacon work of the evening: Study for Portrait(1981) fetched $14.5 million with premium.
Mark Rothko's Untitled (1960)
sold for $50.1 million against a pre-sale estimate of $35 million to $50
million. $50.1 million while Lee Krasner's The
Eye Is the First Circle(1960), estimated to sell for $10 million to
$15 million, fetched a record of $11.6 million including fees.
Five David Teiger works sold for $15.6
million with premium, Dana Schutz's Civil Planning. reached
$2.42 million with premium, or about three times her previous auction record
Two Rothko works on paper executed in 1969, Untitled (Red and Burgundy Over
Blue) and Untitled (Red on Red) reached
respectively $10.5 million and $8.2 million.
Charles Gaines's Numbers and Trees: Central Park
Series IV: Tree #6 sold for $475.000 with premium—nearly twice
its $200,000 high estimate—Rashid Johnson's Untitled
Escape Collage went for nearly $1.2 million with premium,
almost tripling his prior record.Robert Colescott's Garden Spot more than doubled its
high estimate at $704,000; Barkley L. Hendricks's Yocks more than
tripled its high estimate at $3.74 million, setting a new artist record; and
Lynette Yiadom-Boakye's No Words of Gratitude nearly
doubled its high estimate at $680,000.