Auction Results: Photographs from the Ginny Williams Collection, December 4, 2020 @Sotheby’s (online)

This sale represents the last group of photographs from the collection of Ginny Williams (the results from the previous sales can be found here and here.) This portion of the sale at Sotheby’s was sold without reserve (as was the previous online only selection), and so while the Buy-In rate for photography was zero, the results were still decently uneven. Roughly 45% of the lots that sold did so under their estimate ranges, but there were enough positive surprises to provide some positive counterweight, helping to push the Total Sale Proceeds to the middle of the aggregate pre-sale estimate range.

The summary statistics are below (all results include the buyer’s premium):

Summary Statistics
Total Lots 138
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate $485500
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate $743200
Total Lots Sold 138
Total Lots Bought In 0
Buy In % 0.00%
Total Sale Proceeds $637182

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

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 125
Total Low Lots Sold 125
Total Low Lots Bought In 0
Low Buy In % 0.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots $550200
Total Proceeds from Low Lots $499338
Mid Total Lots 13
Total Mid Lots Sold 13
Total Mid Lots Bought In 0
Mid Buy In % 0.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots $193000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots $137844
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 plot by High estimate was lot 96, Pierre Dubreuil, Lyres Modernes, 1929, estimated at $15000-25000; it was also the top photography outcome of the sale at $32760 (image above via Sotheby’s.)

Only 55.07% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there were a total of 15 positive surprises in the sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate) (images above via Sotheby’s):

Lot 7, Andreas Feininger, 42nd Street as Viewed from Weehawken, 1942/1991, estimated at $3000-5000, sold at $11340

Lot 8, Oscar Graubner, Margaret Bourke-White atop the Chrysler Building (close up), c1930, estimated at $3000-5000, sold at $15120

Lot 17, Ralph Steiner, Two Men by the Sea, 1921/1980, estimated at $300-500, sold at $3276

Lot 29, Norman Parkinson, The New Mayfair Edwardians (Peter Coats, William Aykroyd, and Mark Gilbey, Savile Row), 1948/later, estimated at $2000-3000, sold at $6300

Lot 40, Ruth Bernhard, Two Forms, 1963, estimated at $1000-1500, sold at $5670

Lot 41, Ruth Bernhard, Two Leaves, 1952/1955, estimated at $800-1200, sold at $2772

Lot 62, Laura Gilpin, Selected Images, 1931-1962, estimated at $5000-7000, sold at $27720

Lot 76, Ernst Haas, Utah, USA, 1952/1994, estimated at $1000-1500, sold at $3276

Lot 79, Robert Rauschenberg, Selected Images (Suite 1 from American Mix), 1983, estimated at $3000-5000, sold at $11340

Lot 87, Edward W. Quigley, Airplane Propeller, c1930, estimated at $500-700, sold at $1512

Lot 103, Robert Doisneau, La Dame Indignée, 1948/later, estimated at $3000-5000, sold at $11340

Lot 107, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Portfolio Three: The Work of Ralph Eugene Meatyard, 1959-1971/1974, estimated at $2500-3500, sold at $7560

Lot 111, Bruce Weber, US Olympic Water Polo Team, Santa Monica, Calif., 1983, estimated at $1000-2000, sold at $4410

Lot 124, Dorothea Lange, Migrant Mother, 1936/1982, estimated at $800-1200, sold at $8190

Lot 133, Horace Bristol, Rescued Airmen Smoking in PBY (Sitting in Blister of ‘Dumbo’ Rescue Plane), 1944/later, estimated at $1500-2500, sold at $27720

The complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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Read more about: Andreas Feininger, Bruce Weber, Dorothea Lange, Edward Quigley, Ernst Haas, Horace Bristol, Laura Gilpin, Norman Parkinson, Pierre Dubreuil, Ralph Eugene Meatyard, Ralph Steiner, Robert Doisneau, Robert Rauschenberg, Ruth Bernhard, Sotheby's

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