Strong selling rates across New York’s Classic Week auctions

A double portrait of a husband and wife playing ‘tables’ by Jan Sanders van Hemessen that fetched a record $8.6m (£6.62m) at Christie’s New York. Image courtesy of Christie's Images Ltd 2019.

Christie’s latest ‘Classic Week’ sales series put in a robust performance with sales of Old Master and 19th century pictures, sculpture and antiquities generating a premium-inclusive total of $79.5m (£61.16m).

Extracted from Antiques Trade Gazette | Alex Capon

The sell-through rate across the seven sales was 85%.

A total of $48.4m (£37.25m) came from the three Old Master auctions which included a $10.5m sale of 15 pictures from the estate of the late Herman Shickman while works from fellow New York art dealer Richard Feigen sold for over $12m. Feigen’s pictures, reportedly consigned by the octogenarian dealer to fund his retirement after over six decades in the trade, included a Virgin and Child by Annibale Carracci (1560-1609) sold at $5.1m (£3.9m).

The top lot of the series was consigned by the American abstract artist Frank Stella – a double portrait of a husband and wife by Jan Sanders van Hemessen (c. 1504-1556). It exceeded a $4m-6m estimate and was sold to a phone bidder at $8.6m (£6.62m).

The buyer’s premium at Christie’s was 25/20/13.5%.

A further report will appear in next week’s issue.