Since the pioneering sale of Helena Rubinstein’s collection in 1966 in New York, Sotheby’s African and Oceanic Art department has established itself as the true leader in the category, offering the highest quality and rarest examples of African and Oceanic art and repeatedly setting world records, including highest price ever paid for an African sculpture.
Sotheby’s is the only auction house to hold regular African and Oceanic auctions throughout the year in our two principal selling locations; New York in May and November and Paris in June and December. Recent highlights include Tresors: Collection Frum, the first auction dedicated to Oceanic art which broke records with three works selling for more than 1,500,000 USD and the Senufo Female Figure by the Master of Sikasso from the Myron Kunin collection which shattered world records, selling for 12,037,000 USD
Our highly-curated auctions present cultural works of the highest quality from across Sub-Saharan Africa, Australia, Melanesia, Micronesia, Polynesia and Indonesia. Our pre-sale exhibitions held during Contemporary and Modern art weeks have pioneered crossover collecting between these complementary fields, creating dynamic growth in the collecting of African and Oceanic art.
The commitment, scholarship and focus of our international team of specialists based in Paris, New York and London attracts a global audience of buyers and bidders from private collectors to museums that has led to unmatched results, cementing Sotheby’s as the leading international auction house within the field.