1 million, 10 millions….60 ? How much can a work of art cost? Many people agree that art does not know crisis, unlike other markets or business, which are naturally linked to the social and economic circumstances.
Nevertheless, the fervor and euphoria of 2015 is over and this year prices went down. Claude Monet’s piece Meule ranks first place in the 2016 sales record, his piece was sold for more than 80 million Euros in only fifteen minutes, the prize of this piece would have been only in the seventh position last year. This slowdown in the evolution of prices has had geographical repercussions and New York has open new artistic centers, which has cause an apparent change compared to the last two years when the US capital held a monopoly of best sales. In fact, three of the best sales of the year were in London and Hong Kong.
Traditionally it is artists whose production was between the end of the nineteenth century and the eighties, who have the highest records and the sales price of their artwork remains unchanged in regards to the evolutions of art history. It is indeed not surprising that the financial market happens to have an impact on sales records. This is why artists such as Cui Ruzhuo can finds himself better ranking on the charts.
The Chinese market is doing well and the artist is supported almost exclusively by this market, which proves its importance and influence. This makes Cui Ruzhuo the only living artist of this list, who is finally able to see his artistic production rated better than that of Pablo Picasso.
Here is the list of the 10 biggest sales of the year 2016:
1. Claude Monet (1840-1926), Meule
Hammer Price : $ 81 447 500 at Christie’s New York, November 16, 2016
2. Willem de Kooning (1904-1997), Untitled XXV
Hammer Price : $66 327 500 at Christie’s New York, November 15, 2016
3. Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), Femme assise
Hammer Price : $63 220 336 at Sotheby’s London, June 27,2016
4. Peter Paul Rubens (1577-1640), Lot and his Daughters
Hammer Price : $58 077 955 at Christie’s London, June 7, 2016
5. Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988), Untitled
Hammer Price : $57 285 000 at Christie’s New York, May 10, 2016
6. Amedeo Modigliani (1884-1920), Jeanne Hébuterne (au foulard)
Hammer Price : $56 265 500 at Sotheby’s London, June 21, 2016
7. Edvard Munch (1863-1944), Pikene pa broen (girls on the bridge)
Hammer Price : $54 487 500 at Sotheby’s New York, November 14, 2016
8. Cui Ruzhuo (1944), The Grand Snowing Mountains
Hammer Price: $39 577 200 at Poly Auction Hong Kong, April 4, 2016
9. Cy Twombly (1928-2011), Untitled (New York City)
Hammer Price : $36 650 000 at Sotheby’s New York, May 5, 2016
10. Francis Bacon (1909-1992), “Two Studies For a Self-Portrait”
Hammer Price : $34 970 000 at Sotheby’s New York, May 11, 2016