Sotheby's

Blog
In the frame

Unmasked! 3D picture of Banksy (from the back) sells at Sotheby’s

News
Auction houses

Sotheby’s shareholders approve $3.7bn sale to telecoms tycoon Patrick Drahi

With an overwhelming 91% of shareholders in favour, the publicly traded auction house will go private after three decades on the New York Stock Exchange

News
Art market

US-China trade war expands to books and maps as increased tariffs hit art imports

Trump's newly increased tariff of 15% on Chinese goods now applies to the antiquarian trade, further affecting dealers and auction houses

News
Art market

Fourth Sotheby’s shareholder files lawsuit in bid to block $3.7bn sale to Patrick Drahi

Auction house says such litigation is “routine in the US”, with deal expected to be completed by the end of the year

News
Art market

Female artists outperform men when their work returns to auction, report finds

A data study by Sotheby's Mei Moses reveals a 73% increase for work by women in repeat sales, while male artists lagged at 8%

News
Art market

Brexit contributes to 10% drop in sales at Sotheby’s in first half of 2019

Sale to telecoms magnate Patrick Drahi looks set to go ahead as firm makes up for a loss in revenue through increased commissions and more efficient guarantees

News
Art market

Two shareholders seek to block Sotheby’s purchase by BidFair

Lawsuits argue that information filed to the SEC is inadequate

Blog
In the frame

Sotheby's staff subject to peer review to benefit charity

Security guards and specialists alike appraise each others works for selling exhibition to support Mind UK

News
Auction houses

Phillips names Olivia Thornton head of 20th-century and contemporary art in Europe

The appointment comes after a handful of new hires across the auction house’s offices

News
Moon

Lunar landing anniversary inspires tributes to the Moon across the globe

Exhibitions and events at museums and galleries worldwide proves we are still looney for the Moon 50 years after setting foot on it

Analysis
Art market

Price match! Old Masters vs contemporary art: what can you get for your money?

As London's Classic Week of sales comes to a close, we take a look at what the same sum will buy you at either end of the art historical timeline

News
Art market

Sofa King's collection plumps up Sotheby's Old Master sale—helped by a suite of guarantees

Five lots from the DFS founder Graham Kirkham's collection made up almost half of the value of the £56.3m London sale, which was led by a late Turner

News
Auctions

Flipping the Bacon: Sotheby's £69m post-war and contemporary sale lacks fizz

A £16m Francis Bacon self-portrait and a record for a little-known German artist enliven an otherwise dry sale in London as totals fall 40% on last year

News
Law

Sotheby's denied dismissal of Rybolovlev's $380m lawsuit by New York judge

Papers filed in a Manhattan court this week order a pre-trial conference and the release of confidential documents

News
Art market

Mini Impressionist and Modern sale at Sotheby's makes £99m thanks to auction debutantes

Monet's waterlilies and Modigliani's portrait of an unknown boy lead the 25-lot sale, and new record made for Austrian artist Alfred Kubin's haunting drawing

Comment
Art market

Sotheby's newfound privacy gives it greater freedom, but at what cost to the rest of us?

Former public company status left the auction house at a disadvantage to rival Christie's, but its quarterly finance reports provided rare insight in a secretive market

News
Sotheby's

Sotheby's goes private as it is sold for $3.7bn

French-Israeli media billionaire Patrick Drahi's company BidFair USA buys firm from shareholders

News
Aboriginal art

Sotheby’s to hold the first major Aboriginal art sale in the US in November

The auction house cites increasing interest in Aboriginal art among US collectors and institutions

Analysis
Auctions

Edward Hopper's over-priced ode to Shakespeare goes unsold as market for American art proves capricious

Christie's American art sales this week realise a new record for Hartley but Sotheby's struggles to get the pricing right on Hopper's Shakespeare scene

News
Art market

San Francisco museum's Rothko sells for $50m as Sotheby’s closes bumper week of New York auctions

Dana Schutz’s record broken twice in one night at Phillips then Sotheby's, while the bidder behind the $91m Koons Rabbit buys Lee Krasner painting for $10m

News
Art market

Monet's glowing haystacks set alight Sotheby's Impressionist and Modern art sale with a new £97m record

Market is alive and kicking at the top for prime Impressionist works, though Bouguereau's uncomfortably placed, 19th century Bacchanalian scene failed to sell

Blog
Adventures with Van Gogh

Virtually unseen Van Gogh painting comes up for sale in New York next week

Christie’s values the Japanese-influenced picture of the asylum garden at $25m

News
Art market

Sotheby’s reports loss of $7.1m in first quarter of 2019

Lack of supply dogs London and Hong Kong and guarantees are down over 50% as former chief operating officer Adam Chinn apparently joins the Mugrabi dealing family

News
Art market

Frans Hals court case may be settled but it raises questions over science, scholars and contracts

After settling with dealer Mark Weiss, Sotheby’s is still trying to recoup losses after refunding US buyer of the painting

News
Art market

On the Bard’s birthday, Sotheby’s announces it will offer Edward Hopper’s ode to Shakespeare

Estimated to fetch $7-$10m, the New York cityscape, depicts the iconic Central Park statue of the playwright

News
Art market

Court case over 'modern forgery' Frans Hals concludes but judgment reserved until summer

Sotheby's James Martin stands by his assertion that the painting is a fake following hours of interrogation challenging the independence of his scientific analysis

News
Art market

Bonn library recovers 600 books missing since the Second World War

Sotheby's assisted the return of the books, including 11 medieval manuscripts, which were found in Belgium

News
Art market

Sotheby’s settles claim against London dealer Mark Weiss in Frans Hals case

Settlement came day before trial was due to start, but its suit against financier will continue

Analysis
Egon Schiele

Buyer's guide to... Egon Schiele

While well known in the West, the work of this major figure of Austrian Expressionism is less recognised in Asia—until now

News
Auction

Van Ham to auction 4,000 contemporary works from SØR Rusche collection

Dutch Old Masters in the retailer’s corporate collection are to be sold at Sotheby’s

News
Art market

Sotheby's puts female artists first in contemporary sale, but men still end up on top

Jenny Saville's Juncture sells for £5.4m and records set for Rebecca Warren and Nigerian artist Toyin Ojih Odutola, but Jean-Michel Basquiat still leads prices

News
Art market

Sotheby's sales up 16% in 2018 thanks to $1bn private sales boost

Auction house reports $6.4bn in total sales last year, while finance chief Mike Goss says guarantees will not be used "at a particularly high level" in future

News
Art market

Keep the Monet flowing: trim but efficient Sotheby's sale starts London's pre-Brexit Impressionist and Modern art week

£63m auction total is half that of last year, but bidding from Asia and Russia helps make new record for Oskar Schlemmer and a Venetian view by Monet

News

SFMoMA to sell a Rothko estimated at $35m to $50m

Proceeds would go toward acquisitions that “address art historical gaps’’

News
Art market

Drawings prove the main draw for collectors at New York’s Master Week sales

Sotheby’s sees strong sales for works on paper by Rubens and Carracci while interest in masterworks by female artists slowly rises

Blog
In the frame

Hear them roar—tiger rugs by Anish Kapoor and Raqib Shaw fly out the door

News
Art market

Guggenheim deaccessions work by Zao Wou-Ki as the artist’s market swells

Following a $65m sale of the Chinese modernist’s work in October, Sotheby’s will offer an untitled work this spring to benefit the museum’s acquisition fund

News
Art market

New York’s Americana week reveals a generational shift in taste

Sales lag while demand for folk art is on the rise as Millennials move away from a ‘Home Alone’ aesthetic

News
Art market

A monumental work by Marie Antoinette’s portraitist will headline Sotheby’s Female Triumphant sale

Major works by 14 women artists are expected to dominate Sotheby’s Masters Week offerings and bring more 'diverse' collectors

News
Art market

French antiquities dealers slam ‘shocking’ report on restituting African art

Dealers’ association seeks meeting with culture minister over fears report will open the door to numerous restitution claims for a range of artefacts

News
Art market

Christie's France wins the artist resale royalty battle

Supreme court victory in France allows the auction house to shift the responsibility for resale royalties from sellers to buyers of works of art

News
Art market

Shifts among the major auction houses could spell serious change

Loic Gouzer to leave Christie’s as the auction house restructures in wake of Francis Outred's departure, while Phillips upgrades its New York headquarters

Analysis
The Year In Review

2018 in the market: the price is right for pale males

David Hockney was latest white male artist to set a record this year

News
Art market

Jump-bidding for Rembrandt's fingerprints and a tale of two Van Dycks: dispatches from London's Old Master auctions

Christie's and Sotheby's sell near identical Van Dyck portraits of Princess Mary, and new records are set for Frans Hals and a jolly Judith Leyster

Analysis
Market

In debt we trust: the rise of art-secured lending

The rapid growth in the number of loan providers, from private banks to specialist lenders, could transform the art market’s relationship with the financial markets

News
Art market

Adam Chinn to leave Sotheby's after chief operating officer role is 'eliminated'

Former deal-maker, who joined the auction house in 2016 with the acquisition of Art Agency, Partners, will leave on 31 December

News
Auctions

How a Roman sarcophagus—going on sale this week—was emptied for a pug

Skeleton of young man was evicted to make way for the body of the first Duke of Buckingham and Chandos's pet dog

News
Art market

Head of Sotheby’s India takes 'indefinite leave' following #MeToo allegations

Gaurav Bhatia is co-operating in "formal enquiry" ahead of auction house’s inaugural sale in Mumbai today

Analysis
Auctions

The highs and lows of New York ‘gigaweek’

Hockney made the headlines, but other artists made waves—or flopped—at November’s auctions

News
Ben Uri Gallery

Ben Uri museum advisory board resigns en masse over Sotheby’s sale of works from the collection

Nicholas Serota and Norman Rosenthal say that selling off the works is a “grave mistake”

News
Appointments & departures

Sotheby’s Germany chief Philipp von Württemberg resigns

Heinrich von Spreti will serve as interim managing director until a replacement is found

Analysis
Art market

Downright quirky appetite for American masters at Sotheby's

A monumental painting of the American West by Emanuel Leutze breaks records while works by Rockwell and Hopper flop

Podcast

David Hockney: exclusive interview with the world's most expensive living artist

We talk to David Hockney about Portrait of an Artist (Pool with Two Figures), which broke an auction record this week, selling at Christie's New York for $90.3m with fees. Produced in association with Bonhams, auctioneers since 1793.

Preview
Art market

Latin American art gets a boost on the auction block

Including the region’s art in broader sales has been a positive move for some artists' sales

News
Art market

African American artists sweep Sotheby’s contemporary evening sale in New York

With only two lots unsold, the auction house nets $362.6m in evening of avid bidding

News
Art market

Top lots go unsold at New York's Impressionist and Modern sales, proving a discerning but 'not doomsday' market

Monet carries Christie's evening sale while a Magritte shines at Sotheby's, marking an auction record for the Surrealist painter

Preview
Art market

What to watch on the block during New York's fall sales

Lesser known lots still hold plenty of hammer potential

News
Art market

Russian billionaire Dmitri Rybolovlev charged in corruption probe brought by Monaco police

The formal investigation follows his detainment earlier this week related to an ongoing spat with the art dealer Yves Bouvier

News
Auctions

Sotheby’s withdraws painting that Pierre Bergé ‘maintained was by Manet’

The work was one of 18 to have been placed under a court order following a financial dispute unrelated to the auction

Blog
In the frame

Banksy video reveals shredding mechanism failed at Sotheby’s

Girl With Balloon was meant to shred completely

News
Art market

Banksy seller's stringent instructions for Sotheby's revealed

Sotheby's directors speak out for the first time since Girl With Balloon was half shredded at auction

News
Art market

Trio of deaccessioned Georgia O’Keeffe paintings could make over $30m at Sotheby's

Modernist works from the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum will be offered in New York in November

Podcast

In the Sotheby’s saleroom with the self-destructing Banksy, plus Bauhaus pioneer Anni Albers

We go behind the scenes of one of the most publicised stunts in auction history with our correspondent Anny Shaw who was there that evening. Then we get a tour of Tate Modern's Anni Albers retrospective with its curator Briony Fer, speak to the artist's biographer Charles Darwent and the head of the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation, Nicholas Fox Weber. Produced in association with Bonhams, auctioneers since 1793.

News
Auctions

Banksy renames shredded painting Love Is In the Bin as work sells to winning bidder after a week of negotiation

Girl With Balloon canvas ‘self-destructed’ live at Sotheby’s last week in one of the most publicised stunts in auction history

News
Art market

Plucky Brits: Banksy self-destructs and Jenny Saville makes £9.5m record for a living female artist

Just when we thought Frieze week was all over, twists and turns provide high drama at Sotheby’s contemporary evening sale on Friday night

News
Art market

Sotheby’s 'Banksy-ed' as painting 'self-destructs' live at auction

Girl with a Balloon (2006) had just hammered at £860,000

News
Frieze London 2018

Sotheby’s introduces mysterious new symbol in auction catalogues

The curvaceous M indicates a work that is "subject to right of first refusal"

News
Art market

Russian billionaire Rybolovlev sues Sotheby’s for $380m in fraud damages

The mega-collector’s latest lawsuit, filed in New York, escalates his three-year legal feud with Swiss dealer Yves Bouvier

News
Art market

Auction transfer season: Cécile Verdier of Sotheby's replaces Christie's France president, François de Ricqlès

Move follows a record-breaking breaking year for Paris auctions in 2017