Clyfford Still - 1949-A-No. 1

Clyfford Still (1904-1980)
1949-A-No. 1
oil on canvas (93x79 inches)
Sold for $61,682,500

Roy Lichtenstein - Ohhh Alright

Roy Lichtenstein
Ohhh...Alright....
oil and magna on canvas, painted in 1964
Sold for $42,642,500

Alma-Tadema - Meeting of Antony and Cleopatra

Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema
The Meeting of Antony and Cleopatra: 41 BC
Painted in 1883
Sold for $29,202,500

Roman Marble Group of Leda and the Swan

A Marble Group of Leda and the Swan
Roman Imperial, circa 2nd Century A.D
Sold for $19,122,500

EDGAR DEGAS - Petite danseuse de quatorze ans

Edgar Degas (1834-1917)
Petite danseuse de quatorze ans
Estimate: $25,000,000-35,000,000
Unsold

ART MARKET REVIEW - YEAR 2011



A brief review of the Art market for year 2011, with the stars of the season and the main successes and disappointments

by G. Fernández - theartwolf.com

THE SUPERSTARS OF THE YEAR

Qi Baishi: Eagle Standing on Pine Tree
Painted in 1946
Sold for ¥425.5 million ($65,5 million) at China Guardian Auctions, May 2011
Qi Baishi is one of the most important Chinese modern painters, and this beautiful work is now the most expensive Chinese painting ever sold.

Wang Meng: Zhichuan Resettlement
Painted c.1350
Sold for ¥402.5 million ($62,1 million) at Beijing Poly Auction, June 2011.
One of the most important painters of his era, Wang Meng was the youngest of the “four great masters of the Yuan Dynasty”, and his works are extremely rare at auction.

Clyfford Still: 1949-A-No. 1
Painted in 1949
Sold for $61,682,500 at Sotheby’s New York, November 8, 2011
The work was described by Tobias Meyer as "one of the greatest examples of 20th century American painting". Clyfford Still joined Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Gustav Klimt, Francis Bacon, Claude Monet, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Peter Paul Rubens, Mark Rothko, Amedeo Modigliani, Paul Cezanne and Kazimir Malevich; as the only 12 western artists whose works have been sold for more than $60 million at auction.

Roy Lichtenstein: I Can See the Whole Room…and There's Nobody in It
Painted in 1961.
Sold for $43,202,500 at Christie’s New York, November 8, 2011
"I Can See the Whole Room…and There's Nobody in It" was created in 1961, the same year as Lichtenstein's first true comic-strip painting, "Look Mickey". The previous record for a work by Lichtenstein was the $42.6 million paid one year ago for "Ohhh...Alright", painted in 1964.

Francesco Guardi: Venice, a view of the Rialto Bridge, Looking North, from the Fondamenta del Carbon
Painted in the 1760s
sold for £26,697,250/ $42,865,105/ €29,834,146 at Sotheby’s London, July 6th, 2011
After the sale, Alex Bell, International Head of Sotheby’s Old Master Paintings Department, noted that the price paid for the Guardi "is the second-highest price ever paid at auction for an Old Master painting".

George Stubbs: Gimcrack on Newmarket Heath, with a Trainer, a Stable-Lad, and a Jockey
Painted in 1765
sold for £22,441,250 / $35,906,000 / €24,797,581 at Christie's London, July 5, 2011
The previous auction record for a work by Stubbs was £10,121,250 ($15,906,556 / €12,096,885), achieved by "Brood Mares and Foal" at Sotheby's London, on December 8th 2010. In 1999, "Whistlejacket", which many consider Stubb's greatest masterpiece, was purchased by the National Gallery of London for £11 million in a private deal with the Rockingham family.


THE SUCCESSES

‘Famille Rose’ and Gold decorated Chinese vase
Probably Republican’ (early 20th century)
pre-sale estimate: $800 – 1,200
sold for $18,002,500 at Sotheby’s New York, March 2011
The biggest surprise of the year – and arguably of the century. According to Sotheby's, several collectors believed that it was significantly earlier. The vase was the unexpected star of the sale of "Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art from J.T. Tai & Co", which totalled a remarkable $36,312,493

Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema: The Meeting of Antony and Cleopatra: 41 BC
Painted in 1883
pre-sale estimate: $3-5 million
Sold for $29,202,500 at Sotheby's New York, May 2011
The canvas depicts one of the most storied moments in Roman-Egyptian history. According to Sotheby's, Alma-Tadema "draws inspiration for his composition from William Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra, which was regularly staged in London’s theaters at the time."

A Marble Group of Leda and the Swan
Roman Imperial, circa 2nd Century A.D
Sold for $19,122,500 at Sotheby’s New York, December 8, 2011
pre-sale estimate: $2 - 3 million
The Roman group of Leda and the Swan had been recently discovered in Aske Hall, North Yorkshire and had been in the collection of the Marques of Zetland since 1789.


THE DISAPPOINTMENTS

Edgar Degas: Petite danseuse de quatorze ans
Pre-sale estimate: $25,000,000-35,000,000
Unsold at Christie’s New York, November 1, 2011
Edgar Degas’ "Petite danseuse de quatorze ans" is one of the only 10 examples of this sculpture (labeled as "the most celebrated sculpture to have emerged from the Impressionist era") that remain in private hands. The work carried an estimate of $25 - 35 million, but did not find any buyer.

Head of a pharaoh
Egyptian, New Kingdom, Dynasty XVIII-XIX, circa 1473-1290 B.C.
Pre-sale estimate of $3 – 5 million
Unsold at Sotheby’s New York, December 8 2011
The catalogue described this small red jasper work as "one of the rarest and certainly one of the most beautiful Egyptian works of art to appear at auction in several decades". It is hard to imagine a more beautiful Egyptian work of art.

Paul Gauguin: "Nature Morte a 'L'Esperance"
Painted in 1901
Pre-sale estimate: £7 - 10 million
Unsold at Christie’s London, February 9 2011.
The work has been exhibited at over 20 major museum exhibitions including the artist’s first landmark Retrospective at the Grand Palais, Paris, in 1906.


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