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The Now Evening Auction At Sotheby's Sets New Auction Records

With 50% of works sold above their high estimate and 94% sold by lot, Sotheby's The Now Evening Auction, presented in partnership with Celine, set new sales records for African Diaspora artists. 


The auction, held on 13 May 2024, in New York, featured works by both emerging and established artists, including Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Toyin Ojih Odutola, Takako Yamaguchi, Tracey Emin, Kerry James Marshall, George Condo, Adrian Ghenie, Jacqueline Humphries, Christina Quarles, Jadé Fadojutimi, Avery Singer, Cecily Brown, Jeffrey Gibson, Lisa Yuskavage, and Lynette Yiadom-Boakye. The total auction sales came to $32.7 million from an estimated $24.15–34.60 million.


Lot 13, Jade Fadojutimi, (Hip) like a kaleidoscope (po). | Courtesy of Sothebys
Lot 13, Jade Fadojutimi, (Hip) like a kaleidoscope (po). | Courtesy of Sothebys

Here were some of the results:


  • Njideka Akunyili Crosby’s “Thread” estimated at $2 - $3 million was sold at $1.9 million.

  • Jadé Fadojutimi’s “(Hip) like a kaleidoscope (po)”, sold at $698,500, a 16.42% increase from the estimated high auction value.

  • Toyin Ojih Odutola's "Representatives of State," estimated at $1–$1.5 million, which was sold for $2 million, making it the second-highest price for the artist at auction.


Lot 3, Toyin Ojih Odutola, Representatives of State. | Courtesy of Sothebys
Lot 3, Toyin Ojih Odutola, Representatives of State. | Courtesy of Sothebys

The auction saw some record-breaking sales including Yayoi Kusama's "The Pacific Ocean" achieved $4.7 million in its auction debut—more than three times its $1.5 million high estimate—following a six-minute bidding battle between six bidders. Justin Caguiat's "The Saint is Never Busy," capped at $1.1 million, sold for more than three times its $300,000 high estimate. As well, Lucy Bull's "16:10" sold for $1.8 million, 260% higher than its estimated sales value.


The Contemporary Evening Auction, held the same evening, also set new records with its lots led by a collaboration painting by Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat, sold for $19.4 million, followed by Faith Ringgold ($1.6 million, evening auction debut, and more than three times her previous auction record). The cumulative sales from both auctions came to $267.3 million, a year-over-year increase of 30% compared to the May 2023 Contemporary + The Now Evening Auctions, which stood at $204 million.


Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat, Untitled | Courtesy of Sothebys
Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat, Untitled | Courtesy of Sothebys

As Sotheby’s accord, “The May 2024 iteration of The Now Evening Auction combines critically acclaimed masterpieces with the best of newly emerging artists. Taken together, the auction traces the arc of artistic production this century and examines many of the prevailing themes addressed by artists today, forming a dynamic portrait of the varied trends that constitute the art and culture of our time.”


 

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The Now Evening Auction At Sotheby's Sets New Auction Records

May 14, 2024

Fredrick Favour

2 min read

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