With more than twenty auctions over five days, Sotheby’s autumn sale series in Hong Kong defied expectations. Fierce bidding from new buyers and experienced collectors alike resulted in several artist records as well as 100%-sold sales, including The Sublime – Wou-Ki Zao, a sale of sixteen works on paper by the artist, and the collection of renowned Japanese dealer Sakamoto Gorō. Other highlights include #TTTOP, a special auction guest-curated by Korean star T.O.P, which is now the highest-value sale of western contemporary art ever held during a major auction series in Hong Kong. With a grand total of HK$22 billion (US$285 million), not to mention six sales on 5 October alone achieving HK$603 million (US$77.2 million), Sotheby’s Hong Kong performance proved the market is alive and thriving. To discover more about the sales and their best-selling lots, click ahead. LAUNCH SLIDESHOW
Celebrated for his idiosyncratic, unorthodox style and bold subject matter, Affandi was perhaps Southeast Asia’s foremost expressionist painter of the mid-20th century. Before teaching himself to paint at the age of 27, he worked as a teacher and box office clerk. He was inspired by the aesthetic shifts that swept the art world during and after the Second World War and turned to painting to capture the poignancy and richness of an Indonesia taking its first halting steps into the modern era. Besides embodying this ideal of honest representation in his own work, he also founded the organization Lembaga Pelukis Rakyat (The People’s Painters Association) to encourage Indonesian artists to strive for authenticity—rather than rehearsed reverence—in their depictions of the human experience. His determination to depict life honestly rather than romantically set him apart from the aesthetics of Mooi Indie and Pita-Maha, and he became known for painting unglamorous but fascinating scenes from daily life that held up a mirror for the turbulent society in which he actually lived, not an idealized, imaginary Indonesia. AFFANDI, DOGS FIGHTING, OIL ON CANVAS, SIGNED AND DATED 1964. ESTIMATE HK$ 1,200,000-2,500,000/US$ 155,000-323,000.
Sotheby's market leadership in the Southeast Asian art category over the past few years allowed us to assemble a desirable selection, and a high point of the evening was the record price set for the artist Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur, for a work which had come from the esteemed collection of the late Professor Arthur Lim. Large-scale and powerful paintings by key artists such as Ronald Ventura, Carlos Villaluz Francisco, and Hendra Gunawan performed extremely well with artist auction records set for both Francisco and Gunawan.
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