Basquiat’s vibrant painting of a face in the shape of a skull set an auction record for a work by any American artist, beating Andy Warhol.
Author Archives: ROBIN POGREBIN and SCOTT REYBURN
With 16 Basquiats headlining in this week’s evening auctions, the graffiti rebel has become the heavyweight artist of the season.
Among the 64 lots sold on Thursday were 25 works from the collection of Steven and Ann Ames, which sold for $122.8 million.
“Abstraktes Bild (809-2),” bought by Eric Clapton in 2001 for $3.4 million, was among the highlights of the postwar and contemporary sale.
Fewer lots were offered in this week’s contemporary-art sales, but there were some significant high points.
At this sale, a mysterious patron spent tens of millions on Henry Moore’s “Reclining Figure: Festival” and two other pieces.
The bidding at Christie’s postwar-art auction pointed to some market resilience, even though the sale’s top lot was abruptly withdrawn.
A painting by Jenny Saville sold for about $9 million to the Long Museum, Shanghai.
The auction house’s postwar and contemporary art sale surpassed its low estimate, helped by a $57.3 million canvas by Jean-Michel Basquiat.
After several years of blockbuster sales, the art world saw the Christie’s sale as a bellwether for what some are calling a more muted season.