Auction Results: 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening, Morning, and Afternoon Sales, November 13 and 14, 2019 @Phillips

The photography included in Phillips’ 20th Century & Contemporary Art sales in New York last week was gathered in the Afternoon session (there were not lots included in the Evening or Morning sessions), but this placement didn’t prevent the works from performing well. With an overall Buy-In rate for photography under 9% and a couple of positive surprises, the Total Sale Proceeds for photography (of roughly $3.0M) found the middle of the aggregate pre-sale estimate range.

The summary statistics are below (all results include the buyer’s premium):

Summary Statistics
Total Lots 37
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate $2636000
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate $3721000
Total Lots Sold 34
Total Lots Bought In 3
Buy In % 8.11%
Total Sale Proceeds $3057500

Here is the breakdown (using our typical Low, Mid, and High definitions):

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 1
Total Low Lots Sold 1
Total Low Lots Bought In 0
Low Buy In % 0.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots $10000
Total Proceeds from Low Lots $10000
Mid Total Lots 16
Total Mid Lots Sold 16
Total Mid Lots Bought In 0
Mid Buy In % 0.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots $431000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots $510000
Total High Lots 20
Total High Lots Sold 17
Total High Lots Bought In 3
High Buy In % 15.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots $3280000
Total Proceeds from High Lots $2537500

The top photography lot by High estimate was tied between four lots:

  • Lot 365, Barbara Kruger, Desire Exists Where Pleasure Is Absent, 2009, estimated at $250000-350000
  • Lot 424, Gilbert & George, Dusty Corners No. 18, 1975, estimated at $280000-350000
  • Lot 438, Andreas Gursky, Atlanta, 1996, estimated at $250000-350000
  • Lot 439, Wolfgang Tillmans, Freischwimmer 16, 2003, estimated at $250000-350000

While the Kruger print sold at $275000 and the Gilbert & George work sold at $350000, the Gursky and Tillmans prints did not sell, and none of these was the top photography outcome of the sale. That honor went to lot 364, John Baldessari, Nose Promontory (with Two Women), 1989, estimated at $150000-200000, sold at $362500 (image above, via Phillips.)

82.53% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there were just 2 positive surprises in the sales (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate): (images above via Phillips)

Lot 434, Martha Rosler, Cleaning the Drapes, 1969-1972, estimated at $8000-12000, sold at $45000

Lot 440, Thomas Ruff, Nudes dyk 03, 1999, estimated at $15000-20000, sold at $40000

The complete lot by lot results can be found here (Evening), here (Morning), and here (Afternoon).

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Read more about: John Baldessari, Martha Rosler, Thomas Ruff, Phillips

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