Auction Results: Photographs, April 9, 2021 @Bonhams

The results from the Photographs sale at Bonhams in New York last week were largely uneventful. More than a handful of positive surprises were balanced by a too large Buy-In rate (of over 38%), leading to Total Sale Proceeds (of just over $1M) that fell 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 195
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate $1276200
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate $1859300
Total Lots Sold 121
Total Lots Bought In 74
Buy In % 38.27%
Total Sale Proceeds $1043548

Here is the breakdown (using our typical Low, Mid, and High definitions):

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 155
Total Low Lots Sold 103
Total Low Lots Bought In 52
Low Buy In % 33.55%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots $756300
Total Proceeds from Low Lots $545618
Mid Total Lots 36
Total Mid Lots Sold 16
Total Mid Lots Bought In 20
Mid Buy In % 55.56%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots $833000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots $366056
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 $270000
Total Proceeds from High Lots $131874

The top lot by High estimate was tied between three lots, each estimated at $50000-70000: lot 38, Irving Penn, Four Guedras (Morocco), 1971/1985, lot 151, Ansel Adams, Moonrise, Hernandez, New Mexico, c1941/c1970, and lot 154, Ansel Adams, Portfolio IV: What Majestic Word, In Memory of Russell Varian, 1963. The Adams Moonrise print was the top outcome of the sale at $69062 (image above, via Bonhams), while the Adams portfolio sold at $62812 and the Penn print did not sell.

88.43% of the 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) (images above, via Bonhams):

Lot 28, Lucien Clergue, Nu de Paris, 1980s/later, estimated at $1200-1800, sold at $3825

Lot 39, Michel Ghatan, Gentle Giant, Tawi, Kenya, 2020, estimated at $5000-7000, sold at $24062

Lot 59, Jane and Louise Wilson, Stasi City (Interview Corridor, Hohenschönhausen Prison), 1997, estimated at $1200-1800, sold at $5355

Lot 66, Mimmo Jodice, Atleti dalla Villa dei Papiri, 1986, estimated at $1500-2000, sold at $21562

Lot 86, Bernd and Hilla Becher, Framework Houses 6, 1959-1976/1993, estimated at $5000-7000, sold at $14025

Lot 148, Edward Curtis, Before the Storm, Apache, 1904, estimated at $4000-6000, sold at $15300

Lot 152, Ansel Adams, Oak Tree, Snowstorm, Yosemite National Park, 1964/later, estimated at $2500-3500, sold at $7650

The complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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Read more about: Ansel Adams, Bernd and Hilla Becher, Edward Curtis, Jane and Louise Wilson, Lucien Clergue, Michel Ghatan, Mimmo Jodice, Bonhams

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