Bloomberg reports the $10 million sale of a Peter Doig owned by Saatchi. I'm too speechless to be snide. Here are some 'factoids' on the rising auction atmosphere (nice commissions):
London's contemporary-art sales, which auctioneers said may be aided by bonus-rich bankers and wealthy young Russians, were valued at as much as 132 million pounds.
Phillips de Pury & Co. yesterday sold 5.3 million pounds of Western and Chinese art in a Bloomsbury ballroom, just beating its top estimate after adding commissions.
Contemporary-art prices have quadrupled since 1996, according to Art Market Research's index of the top 25 percent of works by Richard Prince, Hirst, Doig, Michelangelo Pistoletto and other artists.
Sotheby's said its contemporary-art evening sale may fetch between 28.5 million pounds and 39.4 million pounds, 64 percent more than its top presale estimate for last winter's sale. Christie's auction tomorrow is estimated at 39.7 million pounds to 54.4 million pounds.
Sotheby's and Christie's just raised their commissions and now charge buyers 20 percent on the first 250,000 pounds of the hammer price and 12 percent on the rest. Estimates are before commission and records are calculated after adding buyers' fees.
painting: Peter Doig