Milan Contemporary Art Sale Success –

Milan Contemporary Art Sale Success –

twombly-milanIn a market where a majority of the major art auctions being held since the beginning of the financial crisis are experiencing far from positive results it is important to be aware that there are still many promising signs of art market resilience. One such sign is the Milan Contemporary Art Sale held by Sotheby’s on the 25th and 26th of November which raised a result of 70.6 % sold with excellent prices set for good quality works with updated estimates. Although 70.6% may not seem like a great result when compared to the 50-60% of lots being sold at other major auctions the 70.6% by the Milan sale is very positive. Even more positive is the fact that this sale was the highest ever total for a contemporary art auction in Italy at EUR 25,083,080 which is 4% higher than the total achieved for the 2007 sale.

Many of the works in the sale achieved excellent results including Cy Twombly’s “On returning from Tonnicoda” which sold for EUR 432,750 (EUR 348991 without buyers premium) which was well above the 200,000—300,000 EUR estimate and ENRICO CASTELLANI’s “SUPERFICIE BIANCA” which sold for EUR 198,750 (160,280 without premium) against an estimate of 75,000—95,000 EUR. According to Sotheby’s, good results were also achieved for works by Jean Dubuffet, Yves Klein, Sam Francis and Gilbert and George.

Considering the current state of the art market and the global financial crisis this sale shows that there is still plenty of drive left in the art market especially in countries that have not been as severely affected by the global financial crisis as the US and UK have.


LOT 247

N. 1928

200,000—300,000 EUR
Lot Sold. Hammer Price with Buyer’s Premium:  432,750 EUR

**Nicholas Forrest is an art market analyst, art critic and journalist based in Sydney, Australia. He is the founder of, writes the art column for the magazine Antiques and Collectibles for Pleasure and Profit and contributes to many other publications.

One Response

  1. Good to hear there are some bright spots in the markets.

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