The Contemporary Art Evening Sale achieved a total of £21,459,000/$34,317,233 with over 50% of the lots sold exceeding their high estimates, and a sell-through rate of over 80%. The star lot of the evening, Glenn Brown’s galactic Ornamental Despair sold for £3,554,500 ($5,684,356) (est. £2-3m), more than 100 times the sum the same work made in 2002 (£32,900). There was frenzied bidding as a group of young artists opened the sale, as one after another they soared past their pre-sale high estimates.
Sotheby’s is proud to present works by many of the leading names in contemporary art in our October Evening sale, from established 20th-century masters to noteworthy figures from today’s young emerging art scene. Highly important examples of German photography include Andreas Gursky’s masterpiece Paris, Montparnasse, undoubtedly one of his most iconic works, alongside the vibrant Chicago Mercantile Exchange, 1997, which follows the hugely successful Stock Exchange pictures sold by Sotheby’s London in June this year.
Also featuring in this sale is Gerhard Richter’s Abstraktes Bild, 1994, which encapsulates the artist’s enigmatic squeegee technique in vivid citrus hues. Glenn Brown’s monumental Ornamental Despair (Painting for Ian Curtis) copied from ‘The Stars Like Dust’, 1986 by Chris Foss, is an epic painting from the artist’s science fiction works, whilst Jean Dubuffet’s Jacasse stands as a bold example of the artist's esteemed Paris Circus series. We are also delighted to be offering the masterful Conversation Piece V 1/1 by Juan Muñoz from his most celebrated series, in addition to a selection of significant works by pioneering artists, such as Oscar Murillo, Wade Guyton, Nate Lowman and Alex Hubbard. This carefully curated sale offers a wide variety of fresh works to the market by some of the most sought after names in contemporary art.