Auction Results: Contemporary Curated, September 28, 2023 @Sotheby’s

It was an uneven outing for thephotographs included in the Contemporary Curated sale at Sotheby’s in New York last week. The top photography lot Cindy Sherman film still found a buyer within its estimate range, but with an overall Buy-In rate for photography above 55%, many other photo lots didn’t fare as well. With no positive surprises to buoy the numbers, the Total Sale Proceeds for photography (of roughly $660K) came in well below the 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 7
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate $992000
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate $1398000
Total Lots Sold 3
Total Lots Bought In 4
Buy In % 57.14%
Total Sale Proceeds $662940

Here is the breakdown (using our usual Low, Mid, and High price tier definitions):

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 0
Total Low Lots Sold NA
Total Low Lots Bought In NA
Low Buy In % NA
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots $0
Total Proceeds from Low Lots $0
Mid Total Lots 2
Total Mid Lots Sold 1
Total Mid Lots Bought In 1
Mid Buy In % 50.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots $58000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots $15240
Total High Lots 5
Total High Lots Sold 2
Total High Lots Bought In 3
High Buy In % 60.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots $1340000
Total Proceeds from High Lots $647700

The top photography lot by High estimate was lot 22, Cindy Sherman, Untitled Film Still #21, 1978, estimated at $400000-600000; it was also the top photography outcome in the sale at $571500 (image above, via Sotheby’s.)

100.00% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there were no positive photographic surprises in the sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate).

The complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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