This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
DOWNTIME ART


Sohrab Sepehri’s highest grossing piece goes up for sale.


UNDER THE HAMMER T


HE INTERMITTENT SOUND of gavel on lectern was heard recently at Dubai’s Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel when global auction house Christie’s conducted its Modern and Contemporary Arab, Iranian and Turkish Art sale. The event was particularly noteworthy as it marked the launch


of a new sales format for the Middle East with the regular part I sale featuring renowned regional artists such as Mahmoud Said, Charles Hossein Zenderoudi, Fateh Moudarres, Mohamed Ehsai and Parviz Tanavoli among the higher value lots, being supplemented by a new part II sale. Michael Jeha, MD of Christie’s Middle East, explained that the


new approach gave a platform to new artists. “This was the first time that we had divided our sales into a part I and part II format. This allowed us to offer a much greater diversity of works, with estimates from $1,500, and to include artists who had never been offered for sale at public auction before.” Another part of the rationale behind the new format was that


the lower prices in the part II sale, when compared to some of the six figure estimates in the part I portfolio, would enable younger collectors to begin securing valuable pieces of art at more affordable levels.


Jeha said that the part II sale was a success on the night and


the work of several UAE national artists was well received. “There was such a great buzz before the sale as new collectors came to see what we had on offer. On the night of the sale it was really


104 / DECEMBER 2011


Christie’s auction house has unveiled a new sales format to lure younger buyers, writes Jonathan Sheikh-Miller.


gratifying to see some of those new faces bidding in the sales room, often sitting alongside some of the artists themselves. I was particularly pleased to see a group of five works by young Emirati artists sell so well – all setting new records for their work.” One particularly striking piece by an Emirati, The Last Look by Lateefa bint Maktoum, achieved a price more than 30 per cent above its upper estimate, when it sold for $12,500. Other local artists featured included Lamya Gargash and Saeed Khalifa. But, of course, it was in the part I sale where the big money changed hands as $5 million worth of sales were concluded – more than double the amount raised in the part II sale. The highest grossing piece was an untitled oil on canvas work by the Iranian artist Sohrab Sepehri from his Tree-Trunks series, which flew past its initial estimate of $250,000-$300,000 and sold for $662,500 – a world record at auction for the artist. Mahmoud Said’s oil on canvas piece Petite Fille D’Assiout


was not far behind Sepehri, with the Egyptian’s work fetching $650,000. Both of these lots were sold to private Middle Eastern investors. Overall, the auction achieved good results with 83 per cent of lots selling despite the present economic worries and more than $7 million was raised. But for Michael Jeha, one of the most satisfying aspects was the reaction to the part II sale. “Thirty-nine of the artists represented in the sale were under 35 years of age and this dynamic was reflected in the audience.”


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80  |  Page 81  |  Page 82  |  Page 83  |  Page 84  |  Page 85  |  Page 86  |  Page 87  |  Page 88  |  Page 89  |  Page 90  |  Page 91  |  Page 92  |  Page 93  |  Page 94  |  Page 95  |  Page 96  |  Page 97  |  Page 98  |  Page 99  |  Page 100  |  Page 101  |  Page 102  |  Page 103  |  Page 104  |  Page 105  |  Page 106  |  Page 107  |  Page 108  |  Page 109  |  Page 110  |  Page 111  |  Page 112  |  Page 113  |  Page 114  |  Page 115  |  Page 116