The Auctions Database of Ancient Arts from Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Americas.
Paris, 3 November 2016
On 15 and 16 December, the auction house Millon, in collaboration with Christie’s, will be selling, at the Hôtel Drouot, a selection of pieces from Madeleine Meunier’s estate. The 15 December will feature nearly 80 African and Oceania art objects, and nearly 60 archaeological lots collected by Aristide Courtois and Charles Ratton, which have remained in the shadows for nearly half a century. The 16 December sale will be for furniture, silverware, jewellery and other objects belonging to Madeleine Meunier.
Paris, 24 October 2016
Several dates have been set for dispersing the tribal, modern and contemporary art collection of film director Claude Berri (1934 – 2009), comprising over 400 works, at Christie’s in Paris. During the 43rd edition of the FIAC, 80 lots of post-war and contemporary works were offered for sale, on 22 October. Artists represented included Wim Delvoye with his pigskin tattooed with Mickey et Minnie (2005), estimated at between €1 and 1.5 million, Jean Dubuffet with his ink work Paysage (1960), expected to fetch about €50,000, and Tatiana Trouvé with her Untitled (2005) charcoal drawing, estimated at between €10,000 and €15,000. A photograph sale is being organised on 12 November during the Paris Photo fair. The auction house has also set a sales session for tribal art, on 13 December.
London, 27 August 2016
Bryan Reeves has stood for a certain vision of tribal art and culture ever since he launched the Tribal Perspectives fair in 2007. Since then, the event has grown, changed its name and venue by moving into The Mall Galleries to become Tribal Art London. At the start of September, Art Media Agency with Artkhade went to London, winding through the fair’s alleys, to meet Bryan Reeves.
I like introducing Tribal Art London as a cultural fair. Our exhibitors cover all fields of tribal art around the globe, and we have a well-developed conference programme, offering debates in fields as wide as culture or ethnography — the aim being to increase understanding of tribal art without contenting ourselves with merely being a strictly commercial fair. Today, the fair is heading to its ninth birthday. When we started, we were no more than a small exhibition with three dealers — “Tribal Perspectives”. We gradually developed the fair, then moved to a fantastic spot, The Mall [.../...]See more
Berlin, 8 April 2016
On 8 March 2016, the online sales platform Auctionata announced a Gross Merchandise Value of $90 million (€81 million) in 2015, in other words a 165 % leap marking its strengthened leadership in the online auction sector. The company envisages developing new sales formats and increasing broadcasting times for its auctions in 2016.
Auctionata, set up in Berlin in 2012, is based in Berlin, New York and London. The bulk of its turnover comes from Berlin (80%) while New York and London represent 20 % — the house is however strengthening its position in the United States. It ran 249 auctions in 2015. Its progress is attributed to the launch of new processes, allowing sales to be held from two or three different locations. Auctionata holds the online sale record for a 17th century porcelain vase sold for €875,000 ($951,000).
According to Alexander Zacke, chairman and founder of Auctionata: “With 200,000 customers from 199 countries and several distinct yet complementary livestream formats, [.../...]See more
Since the market crash in 2008, the term “bubble”, applied in an economic context, has become part of everyday vocabulary. The analogy of a market growing so big, like a bubble, filled with air only waiting to burst, is almost irresistibly charming. Economic bubbles happen all the time, all over the world.
The most discussed possible bubble in recent years has been the art market. Critics, ranging from economists, journalists to opinionated folk, claim that the art market is a bubble and that when it bursts, it will be ugly. Maybe this talk started exactly the same day the biggest bubble in almost a century started bursting: 15 September 2008. On this day, one of the biggest Wall Street firms, Lehmann Brothers, went bankrupt, signalling the real depth of the crisis the world was about to face. On the other side of the Atlantic, Sotheby’s held a one-man auction, with works from Damien Hirst only commissioned directly from the artist, raising £111 million. This is an almost unbelievable coincidence: one of the most controversial artists [.../...]See more
Paris, 18 March 2016
Christie’s has entrusted its African and Oceanic Art department in Europe to Bruno Claessens.
After growing up in Antwerp, Belgium, Bruno Claessens worked as a researcher into African art at Yale University’s Van Rijn Archives. Having published widely in the domain, he is preparing a new book, Baule Monkeys, to be published this year by Fonds Mercator. The work of Bruno Claessens is notably publicised by his blog on African arts.
Working between Paris and Brussels, Bruno Claessens will be collaborating with Susan Kloman, the department’s global director, and consultant Pierre Amrouche. His appointment is expected to inject new dynamism into the department while keeping up the fine sales results established in Paris. On the occasion of the TEFAF, the department is putting together an upper-end selection, to be placed on sale in New York on 12 May.
New York, 6 February 2016
The collection of Drs. Daniel and Marian Malcolm will be offered in a two-part sale series organised by Sotheby’s: first in New York, on 7 May 2016, then in Paris, on 22 June 2016. The entire collection comprises 24 works worth an estimated $10 million.
Gathered over almost fifty years since 1966, some works in the collection have been loaned to major museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Museum for African Art (formerly the Center for African Art), the National Museum for African Art, and the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. The Malcolms also supported the acquisition funds of major institutions.
Jean Fritts, Sotheby’s worldwide head for African and Oceanic art, makes the following statement about the collection: “The collection of Daniel and Marian Malcolm represents a lifetime of true connoisseurship in the finest tradition of our field. They assembled a wide collection of the highest quality as [.../...]See more
Paris, 30 November 2015
Surveying the tribal art market from 2000 to 2015, a recently released Artkhade and Art Analytics report revealed exceptionally positive results for the category, documenting a growing trend towards multi-million-dollar auction sales and the increasing domination of the market by high-end works.
The study amassed a wide range of data to document tribal art’s growth as a sale category—though it still lags far behind the dominant Modern, Post-War, and Contemporary art segments of the market. Here, we have selected seven key figures from the report’s pages to explore what they tell us about the future of this “niche” market.
The tribal art market witnessed record sales in 2014, achieving €92.1 million from works sold at auction. Demonstrating the upward trajectory of the market, this result well surpassed the €52.8 million sold just one year previous, in 2013, never mind the €13.7 million of tribal art sold in 2001.
The year 2006 stands out [.../...]See more
Paris, 30 June 2015
The African and Oceanic art sale at Sotheby’s France that took place on 24 June 2015 amassed a sum of €11.1 million, exceeding its initial estimate of between €6.5 and €9.5 million. This event was also the auction house’s second best sale of arts in this field.
Four lots were sold for above €500,000, 14 for above €100,000, and two world records were broken. One of the masterpieces from the former Vérité collection, the Masque-double, Baulé, was sold for €5,411,000 although it was estimated to sell for between €2 million and €3 million. This made it the highest-selling lot of the auction and also broke the world record for a Baulé work such as the second highest price for a African mask. The second place was taken by a commemorative Akan head from Ghana, which was sold for €855,000, although its estimate was fixed between €200,000 and €300,000, establishing a new world record for a Akan work. The commemorative Fon Tchatchuang statue, Royaume de Batoufam, [.../...]See more
Paris, 10 June 2015
On 22 June 2015, the auction house Artcurial in Paris, France, is to organise a sale of Tribal art, including a piece from the former collection of French poet Paul Éluard.
Almost 70 rigorously selected works are to be offered for this sale. One of the objects offered is a remarkable baoulé mask, from the Ivory Coast, an asymmetrical Kpan headset, found in situ in around 1910. The fine features of the face are made spectacular by two horns on the forehead. This piece was conserved in a private French collection, and is estimated to sell for between €40,000 and €60,000. The highlighted lot of the sale is a Zandé-Nzakara harp from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, dating from before 1960, taken from the former collection of Éluard (estimated between €30,000 and €50,000). This previously unseen piece gives a glimpse into the richness of the collection of the French poet, and attests to his fascination for tribal art. The bevelled sound box is carefully covered in antelope skin, and boasts a delicate handle. The [.../...]See more