The single collector sale of prints by Robert Frank at Sotheby’s last week delivered surprisingly soft results. Not only did the top lot fail to find a buyer, the overall Buy-In rate came in above 50%, with particular weakness in the middle price tier. To make matters worse, there were no positive surprises to balance all those passes, leading to Total Sale Proceeds (of roughly $990K) that fell well below the low end of the aggregate pre-sale estimate range.
The summary statistics are below (all results include the buyer’s premium):
|Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate||$1788000|
|Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate||$2760000|
|Total Lots Sold||53|
|Total Lots Bought In||56|
|Buy In %||51.38%|
|Total Sale Proceeds||$991235|
Here is the breakdown (using our typical Low, Mid, and High definitions):
|Low Total Lots||19|
|Total Low Lots Sold||12|
|Total Low Lots Bought In||7|
|Low Buy In %||36.84%|
|Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots||$164000|
|Total Proceeds from Low Lots||$97155|
|Mid Total Lots||84|
|Total Mid Lots Sold||36|
|Total Mid Lots Bought In||48|
|Mid Buy In %||54.76%|
|Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots||$2086000|
|Total Proceeds from Mid Lots||$713740|
|Total High Lots||6|
|Total High Lots Sold||3|
|Total High Lots Bought In||3|
|High Buy In %||50.00%|
|Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots||$510000|
|Total Proceeds from High Lots||$180340|
The top lot by High estimate was lot 51, Robert Frank, ‘Hoboken N. J.’ (Parade), 1955/no later than 1978, estimated at $120000-180000; it did not sell. The top outcome of the sale was tied between two lots, both selling at $63500: lot 20, Robert Frank, ‘From the Bus NYC’ (Woman and Man on the Sidewalk), 1958/probably printed in the late 1950s or 1960s, estimated at $60000-90000, and lot 47, Robert Frank, Chicago (Car), 1956/probably printed in the late 1950s or 1960s, estimated at $40000-60000 (images above via Sotheby’s).
98.11% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there were no positive 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.