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Christie's: Asian 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale (HK) Auction Analysis

  • Christie's Hong Kong
  • Christie's Hong Kong
June 1, 2015

Evening Sale of Asian 20th Century & Contemporary art at Christie’s Hong Kong that was held on Saturday, May 30, was a pretty solid one – almost 85 percent of lots were sold, and almost half of them changed hands for a hammer price that was over high estimate. Also, it almost had one eight-figure sale, as Sanyu’s Chrysanthemums in a Glass Vase went for $9,331,200 (without buyer’s premium). Prior to the auction – and after it, as well – Christie’s Hong Kong didn’t announce the estimate value of Sanyu’s artwork, so we didn’t count it in our calculations. However, apart from this lot, the auction was marked by sales of paintings of Zao Wou-Ki, Chu Teh-Chun and Kazuo Shiraga – these three artists had 17 artworks in top 25 sales at Christie’s Hong Kong.

The Story About Artwork: Zeng Fanzhi’s Mask Series (1998)

Zeng Fangzhi (born 1964) is one of the most famous portraitists of Chinese contemporary artists. In his early works he depicted internal pain of his subjects through spooky external settings of paintings. He was influenced by Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud, amongst others, and that influence shows in Fangzhi’s Hospital and Meat series. His Mask series is the most celebrated of all, and it was started in 1994 – nobody appears in society without a mask, says the artist, and while in Western civilisation eyes are the window to the soul, Fangzhi’s subject has eyes that don’t tell anything to a viewer. Eyes of a man are blank, and at the same time emotionless and in tears, which is an illustration of a modern individual, that lives in the eyes of others.

  • Christie's Hong Kong

The Overview of Christie's: Asian 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale (HK)

Out of 94 lots that were auctioned at Christie’s Hong Kong, 79 were sold, or 84 percent. These 79 lots that changed hands were sold for $55.4 million, or some $4 million bellow the sum of high estimates of sold lots. Thirty-seven lots were sold over high estimates (a very good 46.8 percent), and, as we said, the highest hammer price was $9.33 million for Sanyu’s Chrysanthemums in a Glass Vase. The average hammer price was $818,883, while the median hammer price was at $311,040.

When we speak of the lot that had the highest difference between hammer price and high estimate, then the winner of Evening sale was Kim Whan-Ki and his Montagne Bleue (Blue Mountain) from 1956 (Lot 7), which was sold with +360 percent difference between those two numbers. In top five there were also works by Pang Xunqin (Azalea, +220 percent), Shozo Shimamoto (Untitled from 1967, +182.4 percent), once again Kim Whan-Ki (Montagne/Mountain, +100 percent) and Tetsuya Ishida (Untitled, +88.9 percent). On a down side, 16 lots, or 20.3 percent of sold ones, were sold bellow low estimate, and Lee Ufan’s work From Point had -20 percent difference between hammer price and low estimate.

Christie's Hong Kong
Sanyu (Chang Yu) – Chrysanthemums in a Glass Vase, Painted in the 1950s (Lot 13).
Christie's Hong Kong
Left: Zao Wou-Ki – 12.04.60, 1960 (Lot 29). Estimated at $3,240,000 – $4,536,000, sold for $4,017,600. This lot had second-highest hammer price of the auction. / Right: Zeng Fanzhi – Mask Series, 1998 (Lot 37). Estimated at $1,814,400 – $2,332,800, sold for $2,268,000.
Christie's Hong Kong
Zao Wou-Ki – Jardin De Mon Père (My Father’s Garden), 1955 (Lot 30).
Christie's Hong Kong
Left: Pang Xunqin – Azalea, 1979 (Lot 28). Estimated at $103,680 – $129,600, sold for $414,720. This lot had second highest difference between hammer price and high difference with +220 percent. / Right: Shozo Shimamoto – Untitled, 1967 (Lot 69). Estimated at $181,440 – $233,280, sold for $259,200.
Christie's Hong Kong
Left: Chu Teh-Chun – Montée Hivernale (Winter Surge), 1985 (Lot 26). Estimated at $1,555,200 – $2,332,800, sold for $2,462,400. / Right: Kim Whan-Ki – Montagne Bleue (Blue Mountain), 1956 (Lot 7). Estimated at $194,400 – $324,000, sold for $1,490,400. This lot had the highest difference between hammer price and high estimate, with +360 percent.
Christie's Hong Kong
Yoshitomo Nara – Yr. Childhood, 1995 (Lot 35). Estimated at $1,036,800 – $1,555,200, sold for $2,138,400.
  • Christie's Hong Kong

Christie's: Asian 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale (HK) in Details

In these two tables bellow you’ll find detailed information on every lot that was auctioned at Asian 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale at Christie’s Hong Kong.

Total number of lots:94
Number of sold lots:79
Sold lots [%]:84
Total [$]:55,360,584
Number of sold lots over high estimate:37
Over high estimate (Total) [%]:39.4
Over high estimate (Sold) [%]:46.8
Number of sold lots in range of estimated values:26
In range of estimated values (Sold) [%]:32.9
Number of sold lots under low estimate:16
Under low estimate (Sold) [%]:20.3
Results were under estimate spread of [%]:29.4
Max Hammer [$]:9,331,200
Average Hammer [$]:818,883
Median Hammer [$]:311,040
Median Hammer Average Hammer Difference [%]:-62
Lot No.Artist NameArtwork NameLow Estimate $High Estimate $Hammer Price $Hammer High Estimate Difference [%]Hammer Low Estimate Difference [%]
1Cheong Soo PiengThe Penghulu155,520233,280311,04033.3100
2T'Ang HaywenUntitled64,80090,72064,800-28.60
3AffandiAffandi and Grandchildren388,800648,000842,40030116.7
4AffandiAt the Beach259,200388,800298,080-23.315
5Nguyen Gia TriLa Perfection ou Femmes et Jardins du Vietnam (Perfection or Women and Gardens of Vietnam)103,680129,600181,4404075
6Joseph InguimbertyFemme à l'Ananas (Lady with a Pineapple)181,440233,280Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
7Kim Whan-Ki194,400324,0001,490,400360666.7
8Kim Whan-KiMontagne (Mountain)103,680155,520311,040100200
9Nam KwanFâete Orientale (A Festive Day)129,600259,200142,560-4510
10Cheong Soo PiengGathering129,600181,440259,20042.9100
11Liu HaisuEuropean Landscape298,080388,800Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
12Lin FengmianChinese Opera Series: Female Warrior of the Yangs648,000777,6001,101,60041.770
13SanyuChrysanthemums in a Glass VaseEstimate on requestEstimate on request9,331,200n/an/a
14SanyuTwo Zebras2,592,0003,888,0002,721,600-305
15Guan LiangScenery in Germany285,120414,720336,960-18.818.2
16Wu GuanzhongA Lacebark Pine1,944,0002,332,8001,814,400-22.2-6.7
17Arturo LuzLos Borrachos207,360285,120492,48072.7137.5
18Fernando Cueto AmorsoloRice Harvesting90,720129,600220,32070142.9
19Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur De MerprèsWomen in a Balinese Interior with Women by the Window518,400648,000777,6002050
20Willem Gerard HofkerPoeri Oeboed with Made Toewi194,400324,000414,72028113.3
21Theo MeierThe Girls181,440233,280155,520-33.3-14.3
22Chu Teh-ChunLumière de la montagne Pa-Shin1,166,4001,944,0002,138,4001083.3
23Chu Teh-ChunComposition No 2901,814,4002,332,8002,203,200-5.621.4
24Chu Teh-ChunComposition No 791,036,8001,555,2001,036,800-33.30
25Chu Teh-ChunComposition No572,073,6002,851,200Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
26Chu Teh-ChunMontée Hivernale (Winter Surge)1,555,2002,332,8002,462,4005.658.3
27Zao Wou-KiVent Chaud (Hot Wind)1,036,8001,555,2001,101,600-29.26.3
28Pang XunqinAzalea103,680129,600414,720220300
29Zao Wou-Ki1204603,240,0004,536,0004,017,600-11.424
30Zao Wou-KiJardin de Mon Père (My Father's Garden)1,296,0001,555,2001,555,200020
31Zao Wou-KiNuit, Mi-Nuit (Night, Mid-Night)1,296,0001,555,2001,684,8008.330
32Chu Teh-ChunRenaissance de la nature (The Rebirth of Nature)285,120362,880Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
33Kuosung LiuEchoes in an Empty Valley71,28097,200155,52060118.2
34Natee UtaritThe Baroque No 351,84077,760116,64050125
35Yoshitomo NaraYr Childhood1,036,8001,555,2002,138,40037.5106.3
36Liu WeiN5-1207,360336,960466,56038.5125
37Zeng FanzhiMask Series1,814,4002,332,8002,268,000-2.825
38Liu WeiSwimming No 2777,6001,036,800Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
39Alfredo Esquillo Jr.The Coming of the Plagues58,32071,28077,7609.133.3
40Mao XuhuiThe Vocabulary of Power No 10; No 11; & No 13362,880466,560324,000-30.6-10.7
41Liu YeRingelringelreihen (Ring a Ring o' Roses)583,200712,800Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
42Yoshitomo NaraNagoya Girl I155,520233,280324,00038.9108.3
43I Nyoman MasriadiOnline414,720583,200453,600-22.29.4
44Paik Nam-JuneRoute 66324,000453,600298,080-34.3-8
45Liu YeSnow White1,296,0001,944,000Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
46Zhan WangArtificial Rock No150311,040388,800259,200-33.3-16.7
47Zhou ChunyaLandscape Series259,200324,000Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
48Zeng FanzhiPortrait 06-1972,0001,231,200842,400-31.6-13.3
49Tetsuya IshidaUntitled155,520233,280440,64088.9183.3
50Key HiragaThe Elegant Life of Mr H77,760129,600110,160-1541.7
51Yun Hyong-KeunUmber-Blue103,680194,400220,32013.3112.5
52Park Seo-BoEcriture No 206-85 (Writing No 206-85)129,600259,200259,2000100
53Chung Sang-HwaUntitled155,520233,280246,2405.658.3
54Lee UfanFrom Point1,166,4001,814,400933,120-48.6-20
55Zao Wou-Ki26584842,4001,101,600Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
56Zao Wou-Ki1706611,166,4001,555,2001,879,20020.861.1
57Zao Wou-Ki183681,425,6002,073,6001,684,800-18.818.2
58Zao Wou-Ki11081518,400777,600803,5203.355
59Chu Teh-ChunTendres souvenirs (Tender Memories)777,6001,036,8001,490,40043.891.7
60Chu Teh-ChunMirage èa l'aube (Mirage at Dawn)1,036,8001,555,2001,684,8008.362.5
61Chu Teh-ChunL'espoir est né (Hope is Born)1,166,4001,944,0001,425,600-26.722.2
62Chu Teh-ChunComposition777,6001,036,800751,680-27.5-3.3
64Latiff MohidinSelumbar: Kulit Kayu (Splinters: Barks)71,28097,20077,760-209.1
65Kazuo ShiragaHokei1,296,0001,944,0001,166,400-40-10
66Kazuo ShiragaUntitled1,296,0001,944,0001,166,400-40-10
67Kazuo ShiragaKeicho 19 (Osaka Winter Campaign)1,296,0002,332,8001,231,200-47.2-5
68Kazuo ShiragaTenjinkai583,200777,600907,20016.755.6
69Shozo ShimamotoUntitled181,440233,280259,20011.142.9
70Shozo ShimamotoUntitled84,240110,160311,040182.4269.2
71Shozo ShimamotoUntitled103,680155,520Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
72Tsuyoshi MaekawaShihouhe Ao155,520233,280Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
73Tsuyoshi MaekawaWork (Shirono Kasanari) A11194,400324,000Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
74Takesada MatsutaniFuture51,84077,760Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
75Takesada MatsutaniWork 65-W155,520233,280155,520-33.30
76Takesada MatsutaniLinear Black No125,92038,88025,272-35-2.5
77Yuko NasakaWork67,39293,31284,240-9.725
78Atsuko TanakaWork194,400259,200311,0402060
79Atsuko TanakaWork19,44032,40058,32080200
80Shuji MukaiWork207,360259,200Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
81Shuji MukaiWork194,400233,280Not SoldNot SoldNot Sold
82Chiyu UemaeUntitled194,400259,200233,280-1020
83Chiyu UemaeUntitled194,400259,200168,480-35-13.3
84Tsuyoshi MaekawaWork 130931259,200388,800233,280-40-10
85Tsuyoshi MaekawaUntitled 141202103,680155,520103,680-33.30
86Tsuyoshi MaekawaWork25,92038,88051,84033.3100
87Tsuyoshi MaekawaWork19,44032,40041,47228113.3
88Uemae, ChiyuUntitled64,80090,720123,12035.790
89Chiyu UemaeUntitled93,312119,23290,720-23.9-2.8
90Yasuo SumiWork58,32084,24058,320-30.80
91Yasuo SumiWork62,20888,12862,208-29.40
92Aine KinashiUntitled38,88064,80041,472-366.7
93Aine KinashiUntitled38,88064,80041,472-366.7
94Shuji MukaiWork No5277,760103,68075,168-27.5-3.3
95Yuichi InoueFlower46,65659,61677,76030.466.7
TOTAL (Sold lots):41,722,12859,516,20855,360,584-732.7

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All images courtesy of Christie’s.