ASIAN CONTEMPORARY MODERN ART AUCTION HONG KONG
Christie’s Hong Kong held their spring auctions from 26 to 30 May 2012, including two major auctions that contained Asian contemporary art. While several works sold above their estimates, sales of Asian modern art far outpaced contemporary.
The evening sale: Zeng Fanzhi leads
Christie’s held its spring Asian Twentieth Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale in Hong Kong on 26 May 2012. While most of the 45 lots and the top selling works were from Chinese modern masters like Sanyu, Zao Wou-Ki and Chu Teh-Chun, a few contemporary artists cracked the top spots. The top-selling contemporary artist was Zeng Fanzhi, two works by whom sold for around double their estimate. The top ten contemporary works are listed in the table below.
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41 of the 45 lots sold for a selling rate of 91 percent. The total value of the auction sales came to approximately HKD362,000,000 (USD46,625,600), around a third of which was contemporary art. According to Eric Chang, International Director of Asian Twentieth Century & Contemporary Art at Christie’s, “The robust results of the sale are, among other factors, due in part to Christie’s integration of Southeast Asian Contemporary and Modern Art into the overall Asian category, creating a wider pan-Asian platform.” He noted that this spring’s auction set the world auction record for Indonesian modern master Affandi, whose work At the Cockfight sold for HKD5,540,000 (USD713,552). The complete list of realised works can be found on the Christie’s website.
Day sales: China, Japan dominate top ten
On Sunday 27 May 2012, Christie’s also held its Asian Twentieth Century Art and Asian Contemporary Art day sales, which exclusively contained modern and contemporary works, respectively. The top ten highest-selling single works from the Asian Contemporary Art auction are listed in the table below.
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The Asian Contemporary Art sale netted a total of HKD97,223,500 (USD12,586,200) for 211 successful lots, compared to the Asian Twentieth Century Art auction’s HKD170,495,250 (USD22,071,700) from 185 realised lots. In the initial press release, Christie’s stated there were over 560 works in the three auctions, which would place the average sell-through rate for the two Sunday auctions at under 80 percent.
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- Sotheby’s Hong Kong spring 2012 auctions: Modern Asian art still outselling contemporary – April 2012 – another major Hong Kong sale this year in which modern art outpaced contemporary
- New records for Chinese auction houses despite market slowdown – January 2012 – the expansion of mainland Chinese auction houses is sure to influence the Hong Kong market
- Chinese art market confidence remains at “all-time high” – ArtTactic November 2011 report – December 2011 – despite a wave of low-performing sales, ArtTactic reports the Chinese art market outlook remains strong
- Christie’s ‘Faces of New China’ Private Collection Sale underperforms amidst art market slowdown – December 2011 – another sale where contemporary Chinese art failed to live up to expectations
- Higher level of international exposure for Southeast Asian art at Christie’s – November 2011 – Christie’s decides to include Southeast Asian art along with art from China and the other parts of East Asia
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