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Sotheby’s Rake in $295m
Art And Culture

Sotheby’s Rake in $295m

An untitled “blackboard” work by Cy Twombly sold for a record $70.5 million at Sotheby’s on Wednesday, leading the way to a $295.85 million total at the auction house’s sale of contemporary and post-war art.

The untitled oil and crayon-on-canvas from 1968, one of the artist’s seminal blackboard works meant to resemble chalk on blackboard, was sold to an anonymous client and exceeded Sotheby’s’ estimate of a sale price in excess of $60 million.

The Twombly, last auctioned in 1990 when it fetched $3.9 million, benefited a foundation with proceeds earmarked for a new facility at a Los Angeles temple, reports Reuters from New York.

Warhol’s 1972 “Mao,” a large-scale work depicting Chinese leader Mao Zedong reportedly being sold by hedge fund manager Steve Cohen, beat its $40 million estimate, fetching $47.5 million including commission to grab the evening’s second-highest price.

Other highlights included an untitled 1987 work by Jean-Michel Basquiat, which was sold by the artist’s estate and soared to $8.3 million, four times the pre-sale estimate.

Francis Bacon’s “Portrait” fetched $15.7 million, while Jackson Pollock’s “Number 17” sold for $22.9 million.

The sale took Sotheby’s over the $1 billion mark for its series of key autumn auctions in the Impressionist, modern, contemporary and post-war art categories.

 

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