Auction Results: Contemporary Discoveries, March 4, 2024 @Sotheby’s (online)

While there a decent number of photographs mixed into the sprawling Contemporary Discoveries sale at Sotheby’s in New York earlier this week, they didn’t generate much in the way of unexpected excitement. The top photo lots didn’t provide much surprise, and with nearly 48% of the lots that did sell doing so below their estimate ranges, the Total Sale Proceeds for photography (of roughly $340K) came in underneath 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 58
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate $390300
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate $579900
Total Lots Sold 46
Total Lots Bought In 12
Buy In % 20.69%
Total Sale Proceeds $343789

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

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 41
Total Low Lots Sold 35
Total Low Lots Bought In 6
Low Buy In % 14.63%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots $255900
Total Proceeds from Low Lots $152654
Mid Total Lots 17
Total Mid Lots Sold 11
Total Mid Lots Bought In 6
Mid Buy In % 35.29%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots $324000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots $191135
Total High Lots 0
Total High Lots Sold NA
Total High Lots Bought In NA
High Buy In % NA
Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots $0
Total Proceeds from High Lots $0

The top photography lot by High estimate was tied between three lots, each estimated at $20000-30000: lot 887, Jeff Wall, River Road, 1994, lot 905, Peter Beard, Elephant bones at Sala gate, Galana (Tsavo die-off), 1976/later, and lot 936, Gregory Crewdson, Untitled (Natural Bridge), 2007; the Crewdson print was the top photography outcome in the sale at $30480 (image above, via Sotheby’s), while the Wall print found a buyer at $22860 and the Beard print failed to sell.

Just 52.17% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there was just 1 positive photographic surprise in the sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate) (image above, via Sotheby’s):

Lot 944, Alfred Eisenstaedt, A LIFE Portfolio: Alfred Eisenstaedt’s Brooklyn Bridge Photographed for Its 100th Anniversary, 1983, estimated at $3000-5000, sold at $20320

The complete lot by lot results can be found here.

Send this article to a friend

Read more about: Alfred Eisenstaedt, Gregory Crewdson, Sotheby's

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

Recent Articles

Emin Özmen, Olay

Emin Özmen, Olay

JTF (just the facts): Published in 2023 by MACK Books (here). Hardcover, 17 x 21 cm, 192 pages, with 87 color and black-and-white photographs. Includes texts by the artist and ... Read on.

Sign up for our weekly email newsletter