HomeCategorySotheby's View Archives - Arts & Collections

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Sotheby’s Evening Sale of Impressionist & Modern Art saw René Magritte’s portrait of patron Edward James, Le Principe du Plaisir (The Principle of Pleasure) (1937), fetch $26.9 million—a new world auction record for the artist. The portrait of one of the most influential patrons of surrealist art—introduced to Magritte by Salvador Dalí in 1937—well exceeded its highest pre-sale estimate of $20 million, after a bidding battle between seven collectors. Commissioned by James himself, the work...

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On 14 November, Sotheby’s will present A Street (1926) and Calla Lillies on Red (1928) by Georgia O’Keeffe in a Contemporary Art Evening Auction for the first time. The stunning Cottonwood Tree in Spring (1943) will also be featured at the American Art Auction, taking place on 16 November. Succeeding the sale of Georgia O’Keeffe’s iconic flower painting Jimson Weed/White Flower No.1 (1932), Sotheby’s will again be offering significant works by the modernist artist to...

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Sotheby’s sold a rare Iznik charger (c.1480) for £5.35 million, breaking a record for a piece of Iznik pottery and establishing one of the highest prices for an Islamic work of art. The charger, one of the most important pieces of Ottoman Iznik pottery remaining in private hands, was offered as part of Sotheby’s Arts of the Islamic World auction in London. Originally estimated to fetch between £300,000-500,000, the exceptional piece drew in considerable interest...

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Anonymous street artist Banksy released a video on his official website showing a ‘practice run’ shredding of his famous million-pound Girl With Balloon (2006). Shred the Love (the director’s cut), which was posted on Tuesday 17 October, implies the stunt pulled at the Sotheby’s auction should have ended with the artwork being completely destroyed. In the video, Banksy himself is shown constructing the shredding mechanism. The clip also features recordings from the auction itself—including clips...

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A one-of-a-kind gold Ferrari will be offered at a special Sotheby’s auction in October. The car—which is currently estimated to fetch £350,000-400,000—will be offered as a highlight of The Midas Touch, Sotheby’s first-ever auction completely dedicated to gold. Fully restored, the 1977 Ferrari 512 BB is only one of four Ferrari 512 BBs to be painted this shade of gold. The rare vehicle is also the only one to leave the production line with its...

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Anonymous street artist and political activist Banksy strikes again. One of his most recognisable paintings, Girl With Balloon (2006), self-destructed immediately after it went under the hammer for an astounding £1.04 million. The artwork was initially estimated to fetch £200,000-300,000. The stunt left auctioneers attending Sotheby’s London’s Contemporary Art Evening Auction on 5 October 2018 completely speechless. It is still unclear what the ramifications are for the art world, the auction house and the buyer,...

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Sotheby’s will hold a series of dedicated auctions from The Estate of Barbara Sinatra in New York this December. The collection will be split among three sales: Lady Blue Eyes: Property of Barbara and Frank Sinatra (6 December), Magnificent Jewels (4 December), and Lady Blue Eyes: Online (27 November-7 December).  Gathered primarily from the couple’s residences in Los Angeles, Palm Springs and Malibu, the objects on offer to collectors include fine art, decorative pieces and...

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This autumn, Sotheby’s New York will offer works from the Marsha and Robin Williams collection in a dedicated auction. The sale, which is currently scheduled to take place on 4 October 2018, is set to showcase movie memorabilia, contemporary art, furniture, accessories and various items associated with Marsha and Robin’s careers. For a good cause A portion of the proceeds will benefit organisations championed by Robin Williams and Marsha Garces Williams, his wife of 20...

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J.M.W Turner’s The Lake of Lucerne from Brunnen (c. 1840s)—one of the finest watercolours by the artist left in private hands—was sold for £2 million by Sotheby’s today (4 July). The stunning Swiss landscape, painted by Britain’s favourite artist, fetched among the highest prices paid for a watercolour by the artist. It was sold in the Old Master & British Works on Paper sale, whose proceeds totalled more than £5.5 million. Created in the final...

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Sotheby’s London sold Portrait on a White Cover (2002-03) for £22.5m at its Evening Sale of Contemporary Art last night (26 June). It was the highest price ever paid for a Lucian Freud work on British soil, beating the artist’s previous record of £16.1m set by Pregnant Girl (1961) at Sotheby’s in February 2016. A late masterpiece, Portrait on a White Cover—painted when the artist was 80 years old—represents the culmination of Lucian Freud’s lifelong...

Unique in its broad international coverage of both arts and cultural events, Arts & Collections covers fine art from antiquity to modern times, auction records, a special sale preview by Sotheby’s, as well as market trends that inform collectors of the world’s finest items.

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