Auction Results: First Open: Post-War and Contemporary Art Online, March 9, 2022 @Christie’s London

There was softness in the sales of the higher priced photography lots included in Christie’s First Open sale in London last week, but there were enough positive surprises to help pull the numbers up. With a Buy-In rate for photography just under 30% and the top lot Andres Gursky print failing to sell, the sale struggled to find its photographic footing. A print by Candida Höfer help equalize the situation, leading to Total Sale Proceeds (of roughly £320K) just above 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 56
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate £312200
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate £472700
Total Lots Sold 40
Total Lots Bought In 16
Buy In % 28.57%
Total Sale Proceeds £320796

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

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 27
Total Low Lots Sold 24
Total Low Lots Bought In 3
Low Buy In % 11.11%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots £85700
Total Proceeds from Low Lots £81018
Mid Total Lots 25
Total Mid Lots Sold 14
Total Mid Lots Bought In 11
Mid Buy In % 44.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots £247000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots £151578
Total High Lots 4
Total High Lots Sold 2
Total High Lots Bought In 2
High Buy In % 50.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots £140000
Total Proceeds from High Lots £88200

The top photography lot by High estimate was lot 30, Andreas Gursky, Düsseldorf Flughafen I, 1985, estimated at £30000-50000; it did not sell. The top photography outcome of the sale was lot 29, Candida Höfer, Narodni Knihovna Praha II, 2004, estimated at £20000-30000, sold at £60480 (image above, via Christie’s).

90.00% of the photo lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there were 7 positive surprises in the sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate) (image above, via Christie’s):

Lot 28, Cindy Sherman, Untitled (From Merce Cunningham Dance Company: 50th Anniversary), 2003, estimated at £4000-6000, sold at £13860

Lot 29, Candida Höfer, Narodni Knihovna Praha II, 2004, estimated at £20000-30000, sold at £60480

Lot 31, Thomas Ruff, Anderes Portrat Nr. 50/29, 1994-1995, estimated at £800-1200, sold at £3276

Lot 50, Matthew Pillsbury, Diplodocus #2, Natural History Museum, London, 2007, estimated at £600-800, sold at £1638

Lot 53, Elad Lassry, Pillow 2, 2011, estimated at £2000-3000, sold at £6300

Lot 64, Zhang Dali, Demolition, 1999, estimated at £1000-2000, sold at £4788

Lot 94, Wolfgang Tillmans, Suzanne & Lutz, White Dress, Army Skirt, 1993, estimated at £4000-6000, sold at £23940

Complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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Read more about: Candida Höfer, Cindy Sherman, Elad Lassry, Matthew Pillsbury, Thomas Ruff, Wolfgang Tillmans, Zhang Dali, Christie's

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