A Jean-Michel Basquiat Hammered for a Record $57-M

A Jean-Michel Basquiat Hammered for a Record $57-M

A Jean-Michel Basquiat Hammered for a Record $57-M

$BID

The art world just witnessed a groundbreaking auction record earlier last May when an untitled piece by Jean-Michel Basquiat sold at Christie’s for $57.3-M.

Given Sotheby’s (NYSE:BID) “limited” Impressionist and Modern art sale the night before, with 21 out of 62 lots left unsold, there were some whispers that the art market is cooling.

But Christie’s had a much better night, with 52 out of 60 lots on offer sold. With premiums, their evening sale totaled $318.4-M within pre-sale estimates of $285.6-398.2-M.

According to Vice President and head of evening sale, Sara Friedlander, 84% of the works were put up for auction for the 1st time.

“Enormous freshness and quality prevailed,” said Ms. Friedlander.

The Y 1982 painting was completed when Basquiat was 22 anni, and its sale far surpassed previous estimates from a press release that the piece would fetch an “excess of $40-M”.

The painting was purchased by Japanese entrepreneur Yusaku Maezawa, 40 anni, an avid fine art collector. Mr. Maezawa founded the Tokyo-based Contemporary Art Foundation in Y 2012, operating under the aim of “supporting young artists as a pillar of the next generation of contemporary art.”

Forbes ranks Mr. Maezawa Japan’s 17th richest person with $2.7-B

“When I encountered the work at the Christie’s New York preview, I had an immediate visceral connection it,” said Mr. Maezawa. “Generationally, I relate to Basquiat’s culture and the essence of his life story. Rather than monetary or investment value, I felt I had a personal responsibility to take care of this masterpiece and preserve it for the next generation.”

The last time a Basquiat work reached an auction high was in May 2013, where he sold a painting titled Dustheads for $48.8-M.

“It’s a tribute to this painting that we’re making records at a time when we’re not expected to be making them,” said Brett Gorvy, international head of Post-War and Contemporary Art.

In spite of whispers that a choppy Chinese economy is seriously slowing Asian buying, Ms. Friedlander describes the bidding from Asian clients, as very strong.

It appears that a heavy outreach in Asia has paid off. Christie’s reported that many of the works from that “good” night were flown to Shanghai for viewings.

Have a terrific weekend.

 

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Paul Ebeling

Paul A. Ebeling, polymath, excels in diverse fields of knowledge. Pattern Recognition Analyst in Equities, Commodities and Foreign Exchange and author of “The Red Roadmaster’s Technical Report” on the US Major Market Indices™, a highly regarded, weekly financial market letter, he is also a philosopher, issuing insights on a wide range of subjects to a following of over 250,000 cohorts. An international audience of opinion makers, business leaders, and global organizations recognizes Ebeling as an expert.

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