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Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Auction Achieves £56,180,434 / $72,697,482 / €66,573,814

Sold by Value: 99%
Sold by Lot: 98%


RUNNING TOTAL FOR 20th CENTURY AT CHRISTIE’S £184,916,135/ $240,003,648/ €218,136,985
Global participation with bidders from 29 countries across 5 continent
Andy Warhol’s ‘Athletes’ series from the Richard L. Weisman Collection was sold 100%, led by the sale’s top lot, Muhammad Ali (£4,973,250). The ten portraits headlined a group of 13 works by the artist that also included Knives (£2,752,148), Flowers, part of ‘Art for Future: Selected Works from the UniCredit Group’ (£2,111,250) and Brillo Soap Pads Box (£383,250).

Three works by Jean Dubuffet from the 1950s, 60s and 70s traced the artistic development throughout the artist’s oeuvre: Alentour la maison (1957, £1,271,250), La robe à boutons (1961: £1,571,250) and Panorama (1978, £2,171,250)

Painting in the 21st century launched the evening and continued with spirited bidding driving strong prices for Tschabalala Self’s Spare Moment (£212,500), Dana Schutz’s Kissing in the Dump (£695,250) and Cecily Brown’s Girl Trouble (£1,482,307). All three of the artists are included in the Whitechapel Gallery’s survey exhibition ‘Radical Figures’.

Additional highlights:
Jordan Casteel set a world auction record with Mom when it realised £515,250

Günther Förg realised a world auction record for Untitled, which achieved £1,331,250

Eddie Martinez, Cannibal Eyes (£347,250)

Sean Scully, Wall of Light Red Bar (£1,031,250)

Bridget Riley, Gaillard (£2,291,250) 

Cristian Albu, Co-Head, Post-War and Contemporary Art, Europe: “The Post-War and Contemporary Art Evening Auction achieved a total of £56,180,434 with sell through rates of 98% by lot and 99% by value. The evening was launched by Jordan Casteel’s Mom, an intimate portrait of the artist’s mother, which sold for £515,250 against a pre-sale estimate of £180,000, setting a world auction record for the artist. This was followed by strong competition for works by a group of artists currently on view at the Whitechapel Gallery – Dana Schutz, Tschabalala Self and Cecily Brown who are pushing the direction of painting in the 21st century – redefining figurative painting. Andy Warhol’s ‘Athletes’ series drew competition for the portraits commissioned by Richard L. Weisman including Muhammad Ali (£4,973,250), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (£491,250) and Willie Shoemaker (£431,250). Such exceptional provenance was mirrored by Warhol’s Flowers from ‘Art for Future: Selected Works from the UniCredit Group’, which was last acquired in 1974. Further highlights included a group of paintings by Jean Dubuffet that define the stylistic traits he developed in each of the decades from the 1950s through to the 1970s. We look forward to the Day Auction on 13 February while our online auction remains open for bidding until 18 February.”

For further commentary on the sale please view our online report HERE.


The historian and broadcaster Emma Dabiri selects artists to look out for during the Post-War and Contemporary Art Auctions this February. Watch the video here. Auctions continue on 13 February 2020, with the Post-War and Contemporary Art Day Auction while First Open Online remains open for bidding until 18 February 2020.

About Christie’s

Christie’s, the world’s leading art business, had auction sales in the first half of 2019 that totalled £2.2 billion / $2.8 billion. Christie’s is a name and place that speaks of extraordinary art, unparalleled service and international expertise. Christie’s offers around 350 auctions annually in over 80 categories, including all areas of fine and decorative arts, jewellery, photographs, collectibles, wine, and more. Prices range from $200 to over $100 million. Christie’s also has a long and successful history conducting private sales for its clients in all categories, with emphasis on Post-War & Contemporary, Impressionist & Modern, Old Masters and Jewellery.

Alongside regular sales online, Christie’s has a global presence in 46 countries, with 10 salerooms around the world including in London, New York, Paris, Geneva, Milan, Amsterdam, Dubai, Zürich, Hong Kong, and Shanghai.

*Please note when quoting estimates above that other fees will apply in addition to the hammer price - see Section D of the Conditions of Sale at the back of the sale catalogue.

*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium. Sales totals are hammer price plus buyer’s premium and are reported net of applicable fees.

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