Art And Culture

Sotheby's Contemporary Art Evening in November

Sotheby's Contemporary Art Evening in NovemberSotheby's Contemporary Art Evening in November

Sotheby’s has announced that it has secured one of the major estates to be auctioned in November during the New York evening sales: the Steven and Ann Ames Collection, which contains works by Gerhard Richter, Robert Ryman, Willem de Kooning, and Philip Guston.

The blockbusters from the collection—which is being hailed by Sotheby’s as "The Triumph of Painting: The Steven and Ann Ames Collection"—will be sold in a standalone sequence at the start of Sotheby’s contemporary art evening auction on November 17, with other works on offer during the day sale on November 18.

A Sotheby’s representative said the estimate for the entire collection will be “in excess of $100 million.” The auction house should hope it hits that mark: sources indicated that the Ames estate was also pursued by Christie’s, and in order to secure it, Sotheby’s had to guarantee the estate for $100 million.

“This outstanding collection is exactly what the market is currently looking for, and as such we are very comfortable with the level of our guarantee,” said Grégoire Billault, head of Sotheby's contemporary art, reported.

Sotheby’s wouldn’t comment on beating out Christie’s for the sale, but Billault added that “we secured this collection as a result of our teamwork."

Indeed, the sale’s highlights include two works from Richter—A.B., Still (1986) and A.B., St. James (1988)—that both carry a low estimate of $20 million and a high estimate of $30 million. Other expected big sellers include George Baselitz’s  Ein Stück Malerei (1966), Willem de Kooning’s Untitled (1976–77), Philip Guston’s Untitled (Smoking) (1979), and Anselm Kiefer’s Dein Aschenes Haar Sulamith (1981). The estate contains approximately 100 works, a Sotheby’s representative said.