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Auctions

GALLERIST’S COVERAGE OF THE NOVEMBER SALES

Auctions

Day Tripper: Kenny Schachter at the London Day Sales

'Fairytale' (2007) by Ai made $84,000 at Christie's. (Courtesy Christie's)

Kenny Schachter is a London-based art dealer, curator and writer. His writing has appeared in books on architect Zaha Hadid and artists Vito Acconci and Paul Thek, and he is a contributor to the British edition of GQ. The opinions expressed here are his own.

You won’t find Leonardo DiCaprio at an auction house’s day sale. By stark contrast with the glamorous biannual evening sales of contemporary art at Christie’s, Sotheby’s and Phillips, those houses’ corresponding day sales, where artworks of lower value are sold—often recently-made artworks by young artists—are much more somber, matter-of-fact events. You may spot the nephew of the shipping magnate, but are unlikely to see the magnate himself. Read More

Auctions

Preview: Old Masters Week Sales at Christie’s and Sotheby’s

22 Photos

The Rothschild Prayer Book, A Book of Hours, Use of Rome, in Latin, Illuminated Manuscript on Vellum (c. 1505-1510)

“Maybe I’m in cloud cuckoo crazy land and I’m crazy, but I think most people are buying because they love the art and they plan to hold on to it,” said Christopher Apostle, head of Old Master paintings at Sotheby’s. “Certainly people don’t want to make silly purchases, but I don’t think people are so motivated by investment as they are about the love of the art.” 

It’s a refreshing sentiment given the motivations of many contemporary-art collectors, and another reason to enjoy the fanfare of Old Masters Week at Christie’s and Sotheby’s. The sales start on Jan. 29, including the second Renaissance auction at Christie’s, which includes tapestry, terracotta, decorative art and furniture in addition to painting and sculpture.  Read More

Auctions

Maybe China Was Behind Christie’s Bacon Reordering?

Christie's Shanghai. (Courtesy Getty Images)

Still thinking about the Christie’s contemporary evening sale? This Bloomberg Businessweek story quotes Don Thompson, author of The $12 Million Stuffed Shark: The Curious Economics of Contemporary Art as having a creative theory as to why Francis Bacon’s Three Studies of Lucian Freud by Francis Bacon (1969) was moved, just before the sale, from lot 32 to lot 8A: “Apparently they had a Chinese bidder who was very interested, but he’d only bid if it was item No. 8, because 8 is a lucky number.” Read More