Record-breaking results propelled Sotheby's five-day series of sales in Hong Kong celebrating the auction house's 40 years in Asia to new heights. The highest-ever-earning sales series by a global arts business in Asia, the auctions achieved more than HKD4.1 billion / USD525 million and set countless records.
The sales saw a high level of international and Chinese interest, with property coming from 44 countries, bidders hailing from 41 nations and new clients from mainland China growing by 22 percent.
Below, highlights of the record-setting sales and lots:
Zeng Fanzhi's epic The Last Supper.
On Friday 5 October, Sotheby's Hong Kong 40th Anniversary Evening sale achieved a stellar HKD1.1 billion / USD145.2 milllion, and saw Zeng Fanzhi's epic The Last Supper earn HKD180.4 million / USD23.3 million, setting a world record for a work of contemporary Asian art as well as a world record for the work of a living Chinese artist.
The 118.28-carat Spectacular Oval Diamond of Supreme Importance.
On 7 October's Magnificent Jewels and Jadeite sale netted HKD744.7 million / USD95.5 million – the highest total for a sale of jewellery in Asia – and saw an 118-plus-carat diamond, the greatest white diamond ever to be offered at auction, sell at a record HKD238.7 million / USD30.8 million.
At 8 October's Chinese Works of Art sales, a Yongle gilt-bronze figure of a seated Shakyamuni Buddha sold For HKD236.44 Million / USD30 Million, setting a world auction record for Chinese sculpture. That same day, the Cunliffe Musk-Mallow Palace Bowl achieved the second-highest highest price for Ming porcelain, earning HKD141.2 million / USD18.3 million.
That previous day, Fine Chinese Paintings sale saw competitive bidding last a remarkable twelve hours, from 10 AM to 10 PM, to arrive at a sale total that more than doubled pre-sale high estimates to achieve HKD406.2 million / USD52.1 million and a sell-through rate of 95.3 percent. The top lot was Zhang Daqian's Spring Dawns Upon the Colorful Hills, which sold for nearly 10 times the low estimate for a total of HKD34.8 million / USD4.5 million.
Watch the video below for highlights of the sales' success, and a preview of Sotheby's upcoming sales and events in Beijing.