Auction Results: The Art of Fashion Photography, December 17, 2014 @Bonhams

Bonhams brought the 2014 auction season for photography to a close with an indifferent thud. Its fashion themed sale last week stumbled over the finish line with an overall Buy-In rate over 67% and Total Sale Proceeds that missed the pre-sale estimate range by a mile. Given the dismal results of this experiment, it’s time for a new late season strategy.

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

Summary Statistics
Total Lots 101
Aggregate Pre Sale Low Estimate $802800
Aggregate Pre Sale High Estimate $1112200
Total Lots Sold 33
Total Lots Bought In 68
Buy In % 67.33%
Total Sale Proceeds $255875

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

Detailed Breakdown
Low Total Lots 71
Total Low Lots Sold 27
Total Low Lots Bought In 44
Low Buy In % 61.97%
Aggregate High Estimate of Low Lots $399200
Total Proceeds from Low Lots $149625
Mid Total Lots 29
Total Mid Lots Sold 6
Total Mid Lots Bought In 23
Mid Buy In % 79.31%
Aggregate High Estimate of Mid Lots $653000
Total Proceeds from Mid Lots $106250
Total High Lots 1
Total High Lots Sold 0
Total High Lots Bought In 1
High Buy In % 100.00
Aggregate High Estimate of High Lots $60000
Total Proceeds from High Lots $0

The top lot by High estimate was lot 28, Irving Penn, Women in Wartime (Dorian Leigh and Evelyn Tripp), New York, 1950/1984, estimated at $40000-60000; it did not sell. The top outcome of the sale was lot 31, Helmut Newton, TV Murder, Cannes (Unique Version), 1975, estimated at $20000-30000, sold at $25000 (image in preview post).

75.76% of the lots that sold had proceeds in or above the estimate range and there was only 1 positive surprise in the sale (defined as having proceeds of at least double the high estimate):

Lot 78, Bruce Weber, Peter at the Chop Suey, NYC, 1999, estimated at $2500-3500, sold at $15000 (image above, via Bonhams)

Complete lot by lot results can be found here.

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