Auction Results: Photographies, Mobilier et Objects D’Art, September 23, 2009 @Sotheby’s Paris

The first photography lots on offer this auction season were buried in a house sale at Sotheby’s in Paris last week, but the results were surprisingly strong, with a respectable buy-in rate (especially given the mixed sale) and Total Sale Proceeds that just missed the Total High Estimate. If this sale is any litmus test for the mood of the photography market, the activity level seems unexpectedly high.

The summary statistics are below:

Total Lots: 65
Pre Sale High Total Estimate: 409200€
Total Lots Sold: 47
Total Lots Bought In: 18
Buy In %: 27.69%
Total Sale Proceeds: 396625€

Here is the breakdown (using the Low, Mid, and High definitions from the preview post, here):

Low Total Lots: 52
Low Sold: 38
Low Bought In: 14
Buy In %: 26.92%
Total Low Estimate: 183200€
Total Low Sold: 210625€

Mid Total Lots: 13
Mid Sold: 9
Mid Bought In: 4
Buy In %: 30.77%
Total Mid Estimate: 226000€
Total Mid Sold: 186000€

High Total Lots: 0
High Sold: NA
High Bought In: NA
Buy In %: NA
Total High Estimate: 0€
Total High Sold: NA

A solid 91.49% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range. Amazingly, there were a total of ten surprises in this sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate):

Lot 33, Andre Villers, L’Atelier de Picasso, Avec Tableau Portrait de Sylvette, 1954, at 6000€
Lot 58, Robert Mapplethorpe, Donald Cann, 1982, at 35550€
Lot 67, Adolf Fassbender, White Night, New York, 1930, at 16250€
Lot 139, Herb Ritts, Clay Nude on Mantel, 1989, at 6250€
Lot 144, Bruce Weber, Coast Guard On Leave, Honolulu, 1982, at 7500€
Lot 158, Berenice Abbott, Broome Street, New York, 1940, at 10625€
Lot 159, Andreas Feininger, New York, 1940, 12500€
Lot 160, Andreas Feininger, New York, 1945, at 11875€
Lot 161, Andreas Feininger, World’s Most Wonderful Snowstorm, 1940, at 8125€
Lot 163, Serge Bramly, L’Avion Chanel, 2002, at 5250€

The top lots by high estimate split, but neither was the highest of the sale. Lot 65, Irving Penn, Enga Warrior, 1970/1977, with an estimate of 25000-30000€, sold for 33150€; Lot 156, Ansel Adams, Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico, 1941/later, also with an estimate of 25000-30000€, did not sell. Lot 58, Robert Mapplethorpe, Donald Cann, 1982, was the top seller at 35550€.

Complete lot by lot results can be found here.

76, Rue Du Faubourg Saint-Honore
75008 Paris

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