Russian Art

Overview

Sotheby’s is the auction house of choice for Russian Art and consistently achieves strong results across all categories. Our most recent November auctions made a staggering total of £17.7 million. Not only is this the highest total of London’s November 2021 Russian Week, it is higher than that of all other auction houses holding Russian sales combined.

Continuing the success of our June Russian Pictures auction which made £9.7 million, the November Russian Pictures sale achieved a total of £8.4 million. Petr Konchalovsky’s Still Life with Teapot and Tray made £1,043,500, more than tripling its pre-sale estimate of £280,000-350,000. The 19th century category was led by Ivan Aivazovsky’s pair of Southern Italian views, which made over £1 million, soaring above its pre-sale estimate of £600,000 - 800,000.

The single-owner sale of Post-War and Contemporary Russian Art brought nearly £6 million, reaffirming Sotheby’s leading position in this market segment. The auction set several artist records, including for Oleg Tselkov’s Boy with Balloons which sold for £571,600 against a pre-sale estimate of £150,000 - 200,000, and for Ely Beliutin’s Revolution which made £157,500, six times more than its pre-sale estimate.

In our November sale of Russian Works of Art, Fabergé and Icons, the Fabergé section was led by a rare and impressive Fabergé jewelled gold-mounted guilloché enamel, rock crystal and nephrite model of an apple blossom which sold for a astounding £327,600, over double its low estimate, thus reinforcing Sotheby’s strong results for Fabergé flowers established in our 2020 sale of Fabergé & Vertu: Property from the Brooklyn Museum, Sold to Support Museum Collections. The mastery of the Imperial Porcelain Factory was showcased in a rare and impressive porcelain vase given to Nicholas I as a Christmas present in 1834 which also doubled its pre-sale estimate at a sale price of £201,600, and two porcelain cache pots from the period of Nicholas I (1825-1855) which realised an impressive £113,400.

Following on from the strong icons results from last season, 30.7% of icons sold above their high estimate, with a silver-gilt and cloisonné enamel icon of Christ Pantocrator by Pavel Ovchinnikov achieving £126,000 - over three times its low estimate - and a silver-gilt gem-set icon of St Sergei Radonezhsky and St Elisaveta by Kuzma Konov which quadrupled its low estimate in attaining a result of £69,300.

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