Sotheby’s Contemporary Art predictions for 2015


Detail of Abstraktes Bild, Gerhard Richter, 1986. Image courtesy of Sotheby's

Sotheby’s February Contemporary Art auction set to be ‘”strongest ever”.

Sotheby’s have predicted a strong opening sale for their first Contemporary Art sale in 2015. The sale which includes landmark works by several top artists will take place on the 10th February at the New Bond street showroom in London.

Included within the items highlighted in the catalogue is Gerhard Richter’s ‘Abstraktes Bild’, described as “one of the finest abstract works from the world’s greatest living painter”. ‘Two Studies for a Self-Portrait” a rare and large example of Francis Bacon’s work during his most reflective time, is also on sale and estimated to fetch between £13 and £18 million. Paintings by Andy Warhol, Cy Twombly and key example of Yves Klein’s iconic IKB monochrome series are also on offer, as well as a “particularly strong group of sculptures”.

The estimate for the sale is between £89.7-127.1 million, the highest for a London based Contemporary art sale. Last years equivalent auction earned £88million and also included works by Gerhard Richter and Cy Twombly. The high estimate for this years sales follow on from Sotheby’s strong results in October during Frieze. The sales in October saw Chinese participation up by 125%.

Following the day and evening auctions, a fundraising auction will take place in aid of “1 in 11” a campaign for the FC Barcelona Foundation, Reach Out to Asia and UNICEF. The charity sale will feature 17 works by well-known artists that have donated their art on behalf of the charity.

The sale on the 10th February will be one of the first since Sotheby’s announced the change to the buyer’s premium rates which increased at the start of February. The new rates are 25% up to 200,000 and 20% of any sale between 200,000 and 3 million. Previously the rates were 25% up to 100,000; 20% on anything between 100,000 and 2 million and 12% on anything above the 2 million and had been in place since March 2013.

Sotheby’s recently released their end of year results for 2014 which showed a significant increase in estimate prices and auction results since 2013.