Bad timing. That's probably the main reason why Editions and Works on Paper auction at Dreweatts & Bloomsbury London was sooo awful. It sold just above half of auctioned lots, five of seven top priced lots weren't sold, and, obviously, total amount of money gathered failed big in compare to the projected auction value. Why is this so? Less than a month ago, on June 11, at Phillips London was held Editions: Including A Selection Of Works On Paper, and this auction was actually quite a good one, as it sold more than 80 percent of lots. There were no other auction of editions and works on paper in London since then, and the two big auction houses in London, Sotheby's and Christie's, did not have such an auction in more than two months.
However, Sotheby's and Christie's did have four huge auctions in three days (two evening and two day sales), and Bonhams and Phillips also had their contemporary art auctions. One of the auctions (Sotheby's Contemporary Art Day Auction) even took place on the same day as Editions and Works on Paper auction at Dreweatts & Bloomsbury: the Sotheby's had their sale at 10 AM, Dreweatts & Bloomsbury had their at 1:30 PM. So, the end of the season, insurmountable competition on the same day, and hundreds of millions of dollars spent on contemporary art on June 30 and July 1 during evening sales at Sotheby's and Christie's - appears that these circumstances had the decisive influence on Dreweatts & Bloomsbury's auction.
So, the Editions and Works on Paper auction at Dreweatts & Bloomsbury London was a really bad one, but it was marvelous for almost every Banksy's work that was put on sale. All of his 11 auctioned works were sold, and six of his sold pieces were in top 8 of lots that had exceeded expectations. Banksy's Love Is In The Air had its hammer price 4.5 times higher than its high estimate, and was, by far, the most successful lot of the auction. His Love Rat, I Fought the Law and Gangster Rat also had an excellent auction, with Anish Kapoor's Untitled (Ring object) that nestled in between them.
Still, these lots didn't have highest hammer prices - Pablo Picasso's Maternite (B.70) did, and it was sold for $24,964, while Richard Hamilton's Flower-Piece Progressives (L.92a-g), Damien Hirst's Big Love, Henry Moore's Landscapes with Cows and Richard Serra's Promenade Notebook Drawing were very close, with hammer prices between $21,843 and $24,183. Andy Warhol's Endangered Species, Siberian Tiger (F.& S. II.297) had the highest estimated value before the auction ($78,011 - $109,215), but wasn't sold, as well as Hanne Darboven's Kalenderaufzeichnung ($46,807 - $78,011).
Out of 321 lots, only 170 were sold, or 53 percent, for less than $1 million (the sum of hammer prices was $959,751). More than 87 percent of sold lots changed owners for a price that was in range of estimated values (44.1 pecent), or under low estimate (43.5 percent). The median hammer price ($3,745) was very close to the average hammer price ($5,646), which means that many lots have been sold for low end prices.
Bellow you can find the summary of the auction, and more details of every auctioned lot.
Sign up for My WideWalls for FREE and be up-to-date with contemporary and street art.
All images courtesy of Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions London.
London, United Kingdom