Coinciding with the internationally anticipated Frieze Art Fair this autumn, Sotheby’s is delighted to present for sale an outstanding selection of Post-war and Contemporary Art. Scheduled to place on 12 October, the sale is spearheaded by Gerhard Richter’s magnificent Abstraktes Bild from 1994. Possessing an aesthetic authority of the very highest calibre, Abstraktes Bild stands among the most remarkable works by Richter ever to have appeared at auction. Accompanying this as the cover lot of the sale is Yves Klein’s RE 9-I, a densely populated and rich work that utterly exemplifies the artist’s most sought-after series: the Relief éponge.
Another sale highlight is Ikaraundi from 1957, a true masterpiece from the Basque sculptor Eduardo Chillida’s early career. With all other examples housed in museum collections internationally, this work is the very last to remain in private hands. Also from the post-war era is a rarely reproduced early drawing by Lucian Freud and an encompassing group of paintings by Frank Auerbach, a collection that delivers a cogent survey of the British painter’s lifelong dedication to his sitters and Camden neighbourhood. This group is joined by another single owner collection of important works from Andy Warhol’s late career. Casting a succinct retrospective glance at Warhol’s mature output, an iconic portrait of Liza Minnelli and an arresting depiction of the Bauhaus-legend Man Ray are accompanied by Campbell’s Soup from 1986 - an emblematic reimagining of Warhol’s most famous subject.
Representing a major feature of the international calendar and in tune with the tenor of Frieze, the October Evening Auction will present a host of artworks selected to exhibit the very forefront of Contemporary Art today. Further highlights include pieces by Gonkar Gyatso, Barti Kher, Zhang Xiaogang, Beatriz Milhazes, Albert Oehlen and Kelley Walker. Works will be on public view in our London galleries from 6- 12 October, 2012.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2012 - In Sotheby’s Evening Auction of Contemporary Art, Gerhard Richter’s Abstraktes Bild (809-4) from the collection of Eric Clapton sold for the remarkable sum of £21,321,250 / $34,190,756 /€26,436,220, establishing the record price at auction for the artist, the highest price of the auctions this week in London, and a new benchmark price for the work of any living artist. Combined, the Evening Auctions of Contemporary Art and 20th Century Italian Art brought a total of £60 / $95.6 / €75 million, far surpassing the pre-sale expectations of £43-59 million and setting a new record for an October Series of Evening Sales during Frieze Week. In total, 8 lots sold for over £1 million, 16 lots sold for over $1 million, and five artist records were set.