Sotheby’s has best ever auction with $422 million New York evening sale


Alberto Giacometti’s Chariot sold for $101 million

Sotheby’s Evening sale of Impressionist & Modern Art in New York was the biggest in the company’s history, with the auction house selling art worth $422.1 million, including buyer’s premium.

Two sculptures helped the auction house break the record. Alberto Giacometti’s Chariot sold for $101 million and Amedeo Modigliano’s Tete sold for $70.7 million. In total the sale included 12 sculptures which sold for $191 million in total.

Chariot is only the second sculpture – and the second Giacometti – to sell for more than $100 million at auction.

An Asian collector bought Vase with Daises and Poppies by Vincent Van Gough for $61.8 million. This is the most a Van Gough still life has sold for in auction and the highest auction price for one of his works since 1998.

“We opened this February with our best ever sale in London, and tonight set a new benchmark for any auction in the Company’s 270-year history,” says Simon Shaw, Co-Head of Sotheby’s Worldwide Impressionist and Modern Art Department. “We were particularly thrilled to see two sculptures command prices commensurate with the most coveted paintings, with Giacometti’s masterful Chariot becoming the second sculpture to cross the $100 million threshold.”

Sotheby’s says that there were bidders from 40 countries with most coming from the US, Europe and Asia. The auction house says that this is the fourth year that it has had the highest Impressionist and Modern Art market sales.

Sotheby’s London Evening sale in February set the record for the highest total for any London auction when it raised $266.6 million.

Sotheby’s says that Giacometti’s Chariot is one of two casts owned by individuals. It had been held in the same collection for more than 40 years. In February 2010, Sotheby’s sold Giacomitti’s L’homme qui marche I for $104.3 million.

Three works by Claude Monet, all from the same American private collection sold for $61.9 million in total. Alice Hoschedé au jardin, which sold for $33.7 million, breaking the record for any Monet portrait in an auction.

All amounts include buyer’s premium.

Other coverage: New York Times: Thanks to Giacometti, Sotheby’s Hits its Highest Total Ever at Fall Opening