Auction Results: Photographs Now (online), July 13, 2023 @Bonhams

The results from the recent Photographs sale at Bonhams in New York last week were largely unremarkable. The top lot Vik Muniz print found a buyer above its estimate range, but an overall Buy-In rate over 40% dampened the rest of the action. A few positive surprises tried to help the numbers, but when the dust settled, the Total Sale Proceeds (of roughly $435K) 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):

Summary Statistics
Total Lots 212
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate $546500
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate $799300
Total Lots Sold 126
Total Lots Bought In 86
Buy In % 40.57%
Total Sale Proceeds $434351

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

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 206
Total Low Lots Sold 124
Total Low Lots Bought In 82
Low Buy In % 39.81%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots $658300
Total Proceeds from Low Lots $348691
Mid Total Lots 5
Total Mid Lots Sold 1
Total Mid Lots Bought In 4
Mid Buy In % 80.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots $71000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots $8960
Total High Lots 1
Total High Lots Sold 1
Total High Lots Bought In 0
High Buy In % 0.00%
Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots $70000
Total Proceeds from High Lots $76700

The top lot by High estimate was lot 110, Vik Muniz, LACMA (La Gerbe, after Matisse), Repro, 2015, estimated at $50000-70000; it was also the top outcome of the sale at $76700 (image above, via Bonhams.)

68.25% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there were a total of 5 positive surprises in the sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate) (image above, via Bonhams):

Lot 83, Tina Modotti, Maria Marin de Orozco (Head Bowed to Left), c1925, estimated at $1500-2500, sold at $5120

Lot 102, Robert Rauschenberg, Untitled (Alligator, Fort Myers), 1979/1991, estimated at $1000-1500, sold at $4480

Lot 118, Horst P. Horst, Papier-mâché Iris, New York, 1967, estimated at $2500-3500, sold at $8960

Lot 197, George Platt Lynes, Almost Abstract Nudes I (‘Tex Smutney + Buddy Stanley, or perhaps Bradbury Ball’), c1943/later, estimated at $1000-1500, sold at $3840

Lot 198, Tom Bianchi, Untitled (Sailing), 1991, estimated at $1000-1500, sold at $3840

The complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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Read more about: George Platt Lynes, Horst P. Horst, Robert Rauschenberg, Tina Modotti, Tom Bianchi, Vik Muniz, Bonhams

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