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Bonhams - Post War and Contemporary Art Auction Analysis

  • Bonhams London
  • Bonhams London
  • Bonhams London
  • Bonhams London
July 6, 2015

Post War and Contemporary Art Auction at Bonhams London that was held on July 1 was a part of the great series of contemporary art auctions that took place last week in the Great Britain’s capital. And while, of course, no other auction house involved could have matched the results of Sotheby’s and Christie’s, overall, Bonhams London did a good job. More than 80 percent of lots was sold, and almost half of sold lots had their hammer prices over high estimate.

Similarly to the day sale of contemporary art at Christie’s London, which was held on the same day, top priced lots at Bonhams Post War and Contemporary Art Auction mainly were sold at, or under low estimate. And out of seven lots that weren’t sold, five of them were expected to go for a six-figure price. High estimate of two lots were close to a $1 million, but no hammer price was nowhere near a seven-figure price. The result of this and other auctions that took place in London could be one of the signs of fatigue of the market, after the exciting spring season.

  • Bonhams London
  • Bonhams London

A Kapoor, a Warhol and a Kiefer - the Most Expensive Lots at Bonhams

Anish Kapoor’s Untitled work from 2012, a magenta disk in stainless steel and lacquer led the way of the Bonhams London sale. It had the highest hammer price of the auction at $624,160, which was its low estimate. Andy Warhol’s Dollar Sign from 1982 was sold for a $100,000 under its low estimate, for $528,621, and Anselm Kiefer’s Maria durch den Dornwald ging from 2005 had its hammer price at $390,100, which was also a low estimate. Total of 8 lots had a six-figure hammer price.

Allen Jones’, Bernard Aubertin’s and Banksy’s artworks had surpassed the expectations before the auction and had the highest margins between their respective hammer price and high estimate. While Jones’ and Aubertin’s works had their estimated values bellow, or around $10,000, Banksy’s Keep it Real from 2002 had the fourth highest hammer price of the auction with $171,644.

Bonhams London
Left: Yuko Nasaka – Untitled, 1964 (Lot 37). Estimated at $31,209 – $46,814, sold for $70,221, or with +50 percent difference. / Right: Alberto Burri – Catrame I, 1949 (Lot 6). Estimated at $109,232 – $156,046, sold for $148,244.
Bonhams London
Left: Banksy – Keep It Real, 2002 (Lot 20). Estimated at $62,418 – $93,628, sold for $171,651 or with +83.3 percent margin. / Right: Anselm Kiefer – Maria durch den Dornwald ging, 2005 (Lot 30). Estimated at $390,115 – $546,161, sold for low estimate.
Bonhams London
Anish Kapoor – Untitled, 2012 (Lot 15). Estimated at $624,184 – $936,276, sold for low estimate. This was the highest hammer price of the auction.
Bonhams London
Lucio Fontana – Concetto Spaziale, 1960-1963 (Lot 12). Estimated at $93,628 – $124,837, sold for $140,441.
Bonhams London
Günther Uecker – Poetische Reihe – Antibild, 1976 (Lot 5). Estimated at $78,023 – $109,232, sold for high estimate.
  • Bonhams London

Multi-million Contemporary Art Sale at Bonhams

Only 7 of 43 lots remained unsold at Post War and Contemporary Art Auction at Bonhams London, which means that 83.7 percent of lots were sold. The average hammer price was $93,462, and the sale totalled $3.4 million – the estimate for sold lots was $2.9 – $4.4 million, while the whole auction was estimated at $3.6 – $5.3 million. Sixteen lots, or 44.4 percent were sold over high estimate.

In two tables bellow, you’ll find the summary of the auction at Bonhams, and detailed information on every auctioned lot.

Total number of lots:43
Number of sold lots:36
Sold lots [%]:83.7
Total [$]:3.364.648
Number of sold lots over high estimate:16
Over high estimate (Total) [%]:37.2
Over high estimate (Sold) [%]:44.4
Number of sold lots in range of estimated values:14
In range of estimated values (Sold) [%]:38.9
Number of sold lots under low estimate:6
Under low estimate (Sold) [%]:16.7
Results were under estimate spread of [%]:31
Max Hammer [$]:624.160
Average Hammer [$]:93.462
Median Hammer [$]:42.132
Median Hammer Average Hammer Difference [%]:-54.9
Lot No.Artist NameArtwork NameLow Estimate $High Estimate $Hammer Price $Hammer High Estimate Difference [%]Hammer Low Estimate Difference [%]
1Josef SimaMatière - Souffle 196546.81478.02393.62420100
2Bernard AubertinTableau Clous 196928.08839.01240.570444.4
3Bernard AubertinDessin de Feu Circulaire 1973-19749.36312.48423.40687.5150
4Daniel SpoerriTableau Piège 197212.48418.72624.96633.3100
5Günther UeckerPoetische Reihe - Antibild 197678.023109.232109.228040
6Alberto BurriCatrame I 1949109.232156.046148.238-535.7
7Alberto BurriCombustione Plastica L.A. 196746.81478.02354.614-3016.7
8Mimmo RotellaLEGR 1958101.430132.639Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
9Mimmo RotellaRS 197539.01254.616Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
10Toti ScialojaBang Bang Bang 196715.60523.40715.604-33.30
11Giuseppe SantomasoMoresco 198323.40731.20924.966-206.7
12Lucio FontanaConcetto Spaziale 1960-196393.628124.837140.43612.550
13Mario CeroliLa casa dell'architetto 196618.72628.08818.725-33.30
14Mario MerzFare foglie dai vecchi ceppi 198428.08839.012Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
15Anish KapoorUntitled 2012624.184936.276624.160-33.30
16Shirazeh HoushiarySpoon and Salt 198415.60523.40731.20833.3100
17Shirazeh HoushiaryUnknowing 200018.72628.08818.725-33.30
18Damien HirstSpin Painting with Skulls (Diptych) 2013117.035148.244Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
19Conor HarringtonOne for sorrow 201231.20946.81427.307-41.7-12.5
20BanksyKeep It Real 200262.41893.628171.64483.3175
21Andy WarholDollar Sign 1982624.184936.276528.621-43.5-15.3
22Howard HodgkinSouvenir of Mahabalipuram 197470.221101.43074.899-26.26.7
23Allen JonesPortrait of Barbara 195739.01254.61654.614040
24Allen JonesAlban Berg 1980-19814.6817.80221.846180366.7
25Bridget RileyDetail September 21 200315.60523.40720.285-13.330
26Jean-Pierre PinceminUntitled 198131.20946.81459.29526.790
27Serge PoliakoffComposition abstraite 1955187.255280.883163.842-41.7-12.5
28Arnulf Rainer... Strahlung (radiation) 197010.92315.60517.1641057.1
29Gerhard RichterKleine Badende 199670.221101.43081.141-2015.6
30Anselm KieferMaria durch den Dornwald ging 2005390.115546.161390.100-28.60
31TancrediUntitled 195470.221101.430Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
32Giuseppe CapogrossiSuperficie CP/798 196718.72628.08812.483-55.6-33.3
33Arnaldo PomodoroRotante (bozzetto) 196893.628124.837Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
34Mario SchifanoFuturismo rivisitato 196623.40731.20949.93360113.3
35Valerio AdamiLongchamp 196714.04418.72620.2858.344.4
36Miquel BarcelóVila Nova de Milfontes 1984234.069312.092Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
37Yuko NasakaUntitled 196431.20946.81470.21850125
38Shozo ShimamotoCrash Bottle Art N. 21 200039.01254.61639.010-28.60
39Per KirkebyUntitled 199231.20946.81428.087-40-10
40Andy WarholYoung Man With Hearts (III) 19567.80210.92315.60442.9100
41Andy WarholRoy Lichtenstein (4 works) 197514.04418.72620.2858.344.4
42Andy WarholCampbell's Soup Box 198646.81478.02343.693-44-6.7
43BanksyRat with Umbrella 200446.81478.02385.8221083.3
TOTAL (Sold lots):2.950.8334.353.6863.364.648-22.714

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All images courtesy of Bonhams.