John Constable (1776-1837)
The Lock (1824)
Sold for £22,441,250 ($35,120,558 / 27.955.469 euros)
July 3rd 2012, source: Christie’s / theartwolf
The £22,4 million was a record for a work by John Constable. However, taken in consideration the importance of the painting, the price can be considered a bargain. One of six paintings that make up the artist’s most celebrated series of large scale works which also includes "The Hay Wain", now in The National Gallery of London, "The Lock" is the last to remain in private hands.
"A man in a gorget and cap" -an early work by Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn - commanded the second highest price of the auction and was sold for £8,441,250($13,210,557), slightly over its low estimate. The catalogue explains that in this work "Rembrandt shows considerable interest in the play of light, which falls diagonally downwards from left to right, casting a dramatic shadow across the wall"
Pietro Lorenzetti's "Christ between Saints Paul and Peter" sold for £5,081,250 ($7,952,157) against a pre-sale estimate of just £1,000,000 - £1,500,000 ($1,565,000 - $2,347,500). The catalogue notes that this important early Italian panel "is, most exceptionally, a work of the early trecento that has not been subjected to restoration in modern times".
Joachim Anthonisz Wtewael's "Mars and Venus Surprised by Vulcan" was sold for a strong £4,633,250 ($7,251,037). "Apples in a wicker basket", a good still-life by Juan de Zurbarán, sold for £2,729,250 ($4,271,277). A typical seascape by Willem van de Velde II -"A Calm - A smalschip and a kaag at anchor with an English"- achieved £4,073,250 ($6,374,637). The surprise of the sale was Pieter Jansz Saenredam's "A view of Assendelft", which sold for £3,737,250 ($5,848,797) against a pre-sale estimate of just £400,000 - £600,000 ($626,000 - $939,000).