Damien Hirst’s new auction of art works has broken all the estimates to bring in a record total of Â£70.5m ($125m), with still more works for sale.Hirst has proved that the credit crunch has had no effect at the top end of the art market . His auction has caused a feeding frenzy amongst dealers and collectors .
The British artist has used the auction house Sotheby’s instead of the traditional art dealer.
It is the first time an artist has sold a substantial body of work this way.
Sotheby’s say the sale has set a new record for a sale dedicated to one artist.
The works for sale include The Golden Calf – a bull in a tank of formaldehyde, with its head crowned by a gold disc – which sold for Â£9.2m ($16.5m).
The extraordinary body of new work to be showcased at Sotheby’s is among his best yet.The Kingdom – a tiger shark also in formaldehyde – which sold for Â£9.6m ($17.2m). It had been estimated at about half that price.
The Black Sheep with the Golden Horn, another animal in formaldehyde, sold for Â£2.6m, within its Â£2-3m estimate.
The auction, entitled Beautiful Inside My Head Forever, was the first of three that will sell a total of 223 art works by Mr Hirst.
The second and third sessions are due to take place on Tuesday.
Mr Hirst has called the auction a “mini retrospective” and “probably the most amazing show I’ve put on”.
It has been called a landmark sale , but that the artist says galleries can be snobby and elitist.
A spokesman for the auction house Sotheby’s said: “The extraordinary body of new work to be showcased at Sotheby’s is among his best yet – ambitious, exquisite and incredibly powerful.”
Art news from Photogold art gallery
A new version of The Singing Butler by Jack Vettriano is to go on sale at auction. A retrospective of The Singing Butler will be auctioned by Sotheby’s at Gleneagles Hotel in Perthshire on 26 August.
Vettriano produced a quick version of the work during a masterclass he gave at the university in 1993.
Now the university is about to benefit from the soaring value of the artist’s work by selling the 15in by 12in picture on 26 August.Proceeds from the sale will go to the St Andrews Students Charities Campaign, which supports a range of local, national and international causes.
Andre Zlattinger said
“The sketch captures one of Jack’s most iconic images and will, I’m sure, have huge appeal to collectors around the world.”
Rock superstars U2 could make up to Â£6m when their painting “Untitled (Pecho/Oreja)” is auctioned in London this week .
The painting, which originally attracted the attention ofÂ band bassist Adam Clayton, will be auctioned at Sotheby’s.
Basquiat, originally a graffiti artist in New York, died from a suspected drug overdose in 1988.
The current auction record for a Basquiat work stands at $14.6m (Â£7.4m).
In 1996, director Julian Schnabel directed the film Basquiat, based on the artist’s life and starring Gary Oldman and David Bowie. Basquiat’s paintings continue to influence young artists.
A new world auction record was set when the rendition of a dancer painted by the Italian Gino Severini in 1915 climbed to £15.04 million, making it the most expensive Futurist work ever auctioned. “Everything is in movement, everything rushes forward, everything is in constant swift change,” the 1910 Futurist Manifesto proclaimed. In contrast to French Cubism, which influenced Futurism but was static, Severini’s “Danseuse” gives the impression of being caught in a swirling movement. The light tonalities distinguish it from the severe compositions of Braque and Picasso in their early Cubist phase.
Severini’s “Danseuse” has a significant place in the history of Modern art in the United States. The famed New York dealer Alfred Stieglitz received it from the Italian artist for his 1917 one-man show. More giclee prints
Andre Zlattinger is a senior director in the British paintings department at Sotheby’s and, as head of Scottish sales, handled record-breaking auctions such as Jack Vettriano’s The Singing Butler. In his spare time he is a keen mountaineer and last month he was on the edge of Everest’s “death zone”, preparing to strike out for the mountain’s summit on an expedition to raise funds for the hospital where his mother was treated for cancer before her death.He’s a regular visitor to the Highlands and Islands, and has also climbed in the Alps, the Andes and the Himalayas. On 1 May, Sotheby’s latest Edinburgh sale netted more than Â£4 million. From the Everest base camp, a delighted Mr Zlattinger said it showed the “real depth” of the Scottish market and “renewed interest in the Glasgow school“. He will be back in Scotland for his firm’s sale at Gleneagles in August.