Results: Sotheby's NY Impressionist and Modern Art Sale

Sotheby's NY just completed its Impressionist and Modern art evening sale.  Results were good, but not spectacular. The sale totaled $227.56 million, which was centered in the middle of the pre sale estimate of $195 million to $266 million.  The sale offered 61 lots of which 46 sold for an acceptable buy through rate of 75.4%.  Sotheby's reported 4 works sold for over $15 million and 38 lots sold for above $1 million.

The top lot was by Amedeo Modigliani, Nu Assis Sur un Divan (La Belle Romaine), 1917, selling for $68.96 million including buyers premium (see image).  This was a record selling price for the artist at auction.  The next highest lot was by Claude Monet, Le Bassin aux Nymphéas, 1917-1919 ( seem image) which sold for $24.72 million including buyers premium.  The pre sale estimate was $20/$30 million.

Sotheby's reported on the sale.

“We are delighted with the results of our sale, which build on the success of the past year, and are our best in this category in New York since May 2008,” said Simon Shaw, Head of Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Art Department in New York. “It was a great night for Modigliani. La Belle Romaine, his breathtaking nude from circa 1917, provoked spirited bidding from at least five clients and ultimately eclipsed the previous record for the artist at auction, set earlier this year. That price represents over four times the price realized when it was sold at Sotheby’s in 1999, a then record $16.8 million. The depth of bidding from all over the world, including Asia, Europe, Russia and the United States, was particularly notable,” Mr. Shaw added.

“It was very encouraging to see multiple bidders on most of the major lots this evening, demonstrating tremendous strength and confidence in works of great quality in today’s market,” commented David Norman,
Co-Chairman of Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Art Department Worldwide. Two of the other highlights this evening were sold to benefit YoungArts, the Core Program of the National Foundation for  Advancement in the Arts. Le Bassin aux Nymphéas, the spectacular canvas from Claude Monet's iconic water lilies series, sold for $24,722,500 (est. $20/30 million) and Jeanne Hébuterne (au chapeau), one of the first portraits Amedeo Modigliani painted of his great love, sold for $19,122,500, well in excess of the high estimate (est. $9/12 million).

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