Auction Results: Contemporary Curated, April 11, 2018 @Sotheby’s London

The results of the photography included in Sotheby’s recent Contemporary Curated sale in London were all over the map. The top end of the photography offerings were choppy, with the top lot Andreas Gursky print failing to sell. And at the bottom end, some photography lots dropped to prices as low as £125. But in between, the overall Buy-In rate for photography was under 20% and there were a handful of positive surprises to pump up the numbers. In the end, the Total Sale Proceeds couldn’t quite reach then low end of the aggregate pre-sale estimate range.

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

Summary Statistics
Total Lots 51
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate £410900
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate £575600
Total Lots Sold 41
Total Lots Bought In 10
Buy In % 19.61%
Total Sale Proceeds £398353

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

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 28
Total Low Lots Sold 27
Total Low Lots Bought In 1
Low Buy In % 3.57%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots £56600
Total Proceeds from Low Lots £63978
Mid Total Lots 17
Total Mid Lots Sold 12
Total Mid Lots Bought In 5
Mid Buy In % 29.41%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots £159000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots £178125
Total High Lots 6
Total High Lots Sold 2
Total High Lots Bought In 4
High Buy In % 66.67%
Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots £360000
Total Proceeds from High Lots £156250

The top photography lot by High estimate was lot 33, Andreas Gursky, Love Parade, 2001, estimated at £90000-120000; it did not sell. The top photography outcome of the sale was lot 32, Cindy Sherman, Untitled Film Still #63, 1980, estimated at £50000-70000, sold at £93750 (image above, via Sotheby’s).

Only 60.98% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there were a total of 4 positive surprises in the sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate) (images above via Sotheby’s):

Lot 26, Torbjørn Rødland, Nudist No. 5, 1999, estimated at £2000-3000, sold at £7500

Lot 27, Torbjørn Rødland, Visitation II, 2000, estimated at £2000-3000, sold at £6875

Lot 29, Wolfgang Tillmans, Adam Doing Up Boot, 1991/1994, estimated at £2500-3500, sold at £10000

Lot 122, Shirin Neshat, Soliloquy series (Figure in Front of Steps), 1999, estimated at £15000-20000, sold at £82500

The complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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Read more about: Cindy Sherman, Shirin Neshat, Torbjorn Rødland, Wolfgang Tillmans, Sotheby's

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