In recent art world news, as an update to our recent post on the fall sale of American works from the $300 million Barney Ebsworth collection, the highly anticipated sale of American modern art occurred earlier this week and fetched $317.8 million at Christie’s New York. A number of artist records were set at Tuesday evening’s auction, including one for Edward Hopper’s masterpiece “Chop Suey” (1929), which sold for $91.9 million (with buyer’s premium) and more than doubled the artist’s previous record.
All of the 42 lots offered for sale were backed either by auction house guarantees or third party guarantees in which third parties receive a financial incentive for assuming the risk. The divide consisted of 34 lots backed by Christie’s and eight by third parties. Of the 37 lots sold (five lots failed to sell), 20 fetched more than $1 million—of those, six sold for more than $10 million and three surpassed $50 million (in addition to Edward Hopper’s “Chop Suey”, Willem de Kooning’s “Woman as Landscape” (1954-55) sold for $68.9 million and Jackson Pollock’s “Composition with Red Strokes” (1950) sold for $55.4 million).
The sale prices of the three featured works by Hopper, de Kooning, and Pollock, set forth above exceeded the earlier reported estimates ($70 million, $60 million, and $50 million) for each respective work.