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Digital Subscriptions > Antiques Trade Gazette > 2301 > New life breathed into Old Masters

New life breathed into Old Masters

Traditional calendar slot at the end of London sales season achieves better results than 2016

Art market

Written off by some as a dying area, the latest Old Master series in London defied the naysayers with encouraging results during its traditional ‘grand finale’ slot at the end of the London sales season.

The evening auctions at Sotheby’s (25/20/12.5% buyer’s premium) and Christie’s (25/20/12% buyer’s premium) totalled £82.81m from 116 lots on July 5-6. This was a superior sum to last year’s equivalent sales, especially at Sotheby’s, which dramatically improved on a lean £13.8m contribution.

Overall, Sotheby’s larger 70-lot sale was the stronger of the two, with an 85% selling rate (the house’s best ever for an Old Master evening sale) and a £44.9m hammer total.

Alexander Bell, co-chairman of Old Master paintings worldwide, said after the sale that the total numbers of bidders and countries were “significantly up on last year’s sale” and, as well as fresh-to-the-market works, an appetite also emerged for ‘seen’ works.

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About Antiques Trade Gazette

Antiques Trade Gazette is the essential publication for everyone with a serious interest in art, antiques and collectables. Every week it is packed with up-to-the-minute news on the market, with individual items beautifully illustrated throughout. Since 1971 it has been the most reliable source of information on what is really happening at auctions in the UK and around the world. Each issue is filled with auction advertisements and detailed auction reports written by expert journalists. The Dealer’s Diary section keeps readers constantly updated on what is happening at the fairs and markets and in the galleries and shops. Market professionals and serious collectors throughout the world rely on ATG to keep them informed on developments and issues which shape the art market. It is here that they learn about the prices achieved at auction in every area - from antiquities to pop memorabilia, from impressionist paintings to Chinese art. With 500 or more art objects pictured, every issue is a treat to the eye and a visual education. Whatever the topic Antiques Trade Gazette is well-informed, up-to-date and entertaining.

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