On 15th November Christies hit a new all time record for a living artist.
David Hockney’s painting ‘Portrait of an Artist (pool with two figures)‘ from 1972 earned a record $90.3m making the 81 year old the most highly valued living artist today.
The painting opened without a reserve (an undisclosed minimum price at which the buyer or acution house agrees to let it sell). Unheard of in todays auction houses! The record-making Hockney’s unpublished pre-sale estimate had been $70 million to $100 million, though much of the pre-sale chatter guessed $80 million as the likely level.The bidding opened at $18 million and away it went, shooting up in 2 and 3 Million increments. It was in the mid $60 millions within about 60 seconds. Hammer price came down at $ 80 million and the whole process took only about 9 minutes.