The American economy has had an effect on every aspect of our economy, and the fine art world has experienced some knocks along with it. Last year, fine art photography auctions in New York managed to hold steady. Bidders were thinner, and unsold lots were more numerous, but prices didn’t drop as much as expected.
There were a few stand outs that sold for more than the estimates. William Eggleston’s “Jackson, Mississippi, 1972 sold for $158,500 to a European bidder, an impressive $78,500 over the high estimate. One of Richard Prince’s large scale prints from his 1993 “Girlfriend” series sold to a phone bidder for $302,500, $2,500 over the high estimate. Cindy Sherman’s “Untitled #106 from 1982 brought $62,500 when the hammer came down. The estimate was $30,000-$50,000.
The 2009 Christie’s photography auction is scheduled for October 7 & 8th. Offerings from “The American Landscape: Color Photographs from the Collection of Bruce and Nancy Berman” and “Photographs by Sally Mann from a Private Collection, Washington D.C.” will be offered on the 7th. “Photographs” and “The Miller-Plummer Collection of Photographs” are up for bid on the 8th.
It will be interesting to see what kind of prices photography will command this year.