Media Release
21 April 2015
London | Sarah Rustin | [email protected] | Matthew Weigman | [email protected]
New York | Dan Abernethy | [email protected] | Doha | Alla Salem | [email protected]
Achieves Record Prices for 11 Artists
Comfortably Within Pre-Sale Estimates
Attracts Participation from 22 Countries
Twelve Artists Sold for the First Time at Auction in the Middle East
Kour Pour, Vik Muniz, Nejib Belkhodja, Christopher Wool, Etel Adnan, El Anatsui, Shaweesh, Wim
Delvoye, Gouider Triki, Abdelaziz Gorgi, Mohamed Ben Allal, Jalel Ben Abdallah
Doha, 21 April 2015, tonight’s Contemporary Art Doha auction achieved the strong total of $7,511,125,
solidly between pre-sale expectations of $6,170,000 - 8,860,000.* The sale was 76% sold by lot and
records were established for 11 artists.** The top lot of tonight’s sale was one of Christopher Wool’s
earliest, most desirable and sought-after pattern paintings which fetched $1,330,000 – setting a new
benchmark for a work by the artist in the Middle East (pictured above). In addition there were strong
prices for other major international Contemporary artists such as Anish Kapoor and Rudolf Stingel,
while top-calibre works by leading Arab & Iranian artists particularly those from Egypt & Lebanon also
performed well.
Lina Lazaar, Sotheby's Director, International contemporary Art, said: "Following hot on the heels of
our October sale of Contemporary art in Doha, we were delighted that our 2015 sale was again greeted
with such enthusiasm by local, regional and international participants, spanning the US, right across
Europe and the Middle East as well as Asia. Once more we saw a number of artist records established –
as many as eleven – and strong prices achieved for artists who were offered at auction in the Middle
East for the very first time. Tonight’s total was a rewarding result; it very much reflects our desire to
make each sale we hold in Doha a new and exciting experience as much as it is an opportunity to buy
top calibre international art within the region.”
Aileen Agopian, Sotheby's Senior Vice President, International Contemporary Art Specialist, said:
"“With as many as 22 countries participating in tonight’s sale, we saw lively bidding both in the room
and from our international phone bidders, demonstrating that our Doha sales consistently draw an
international audience. It’s noteworthy that there is an equal balance among the top ten lots in
tonight’s sale between International and Middle Eastern artists. While the high-quality offering in
tonight’s auction was worthy of any one of Sotheby’s international selling locations, participants
tonight heartily indicated that Doha is a unique and ideal location to acquire outstanding works and
see strong prices achieved for both new and established International and Middle Eastern artists.”
The top lot of the sale was a bold, graphic Untitled Christopher Wool work which fetched $1,330,000
(est. $1/1.5 million, pictured above left). The piece was created between 1986 -1987 and is one of the
artist's earliest, most desirable and sought-after pattern paintings.
Anish Kapoor’s Untitled from the artist’s Pixelated Disk series was a further highlight, realising
$1,030,000 (est. $800,000/1.2m, above right). The perfect concave sphere of Untitled instantly
enshrouds the viewer into its welcoming, yet slightly disconcerting, infinite space with the concave
form capturing the eternally changing natural world within its fixed, artificial grasp.
Internationally revered artist Rudolf Stingel’s Untitled from 2001 sold for $790,000 (est.
$600,000/800,000, above center). The work from the artist’s desired Celotex series of paintings, is a
sumptuous and shimmering canvas in which the artist captures the passage of time.
El Anatsui’s Introvert, a found aluminium and copper wire installation that exemplifies Anatsui’s
signatory method of artistic production coupled with his principal ideology of reassigning purpose to
waste sold for $910,000 (est. $700,000/1 million, above left).
The Shrine from 2011 by internationally acclaimed artist Ali Banisadr soared over the high estimate to
achieve $237,500 (est. $100/150,000, above center left) just six months after Sotheby’s set a record for
the artist in Doha with The Chase.
Ayman Baalbaki’s Al-Mulatham from 2009 which, like many of the artist’s major works, depicts the
shrouded face of a lone, heroic figure gazing up to the skies fetched $187,500 (est. $80/120,000, above
center right).
Ramses Younan’s Untitled from 1945 sold for $137,500 (est. $60/80,000, above right), the sale marked
a rare appearance at auction for a work by the Egyptian artist who was instrumental to the Art and
Freedom Movement.
Lot 5
Kour Pour
Love Child
Est. $70,000 – 90,000
Sold for $162,500
Lot 13
Nejib Belkhodja
Medina entre deux orages
Est. $150,000 – 200,000
Sold for $187,500
Lot 15
Abdullah Qandeel
The Race
Est. $20,000 – 30,000
Sold for $274,000
Lot 31
Captain America (The Refugees)
Est. $7,000 – 10,000
Sold for $15,000
Lot 32
Walid Ra’ad
Scratching on things I could disavow (parts 2-5)
Est. $40,000 – 60,000
Sold for $87,500
Lot 38
Gouider Triki
Untitled 6
Est. $20,000 – 30,000
Sold for $25,000
Lot 47
Ramses Younan
Est. $60,000- 80,000
Sold for $137,500
Lot 48
Mahjoub Ben Bella
Est. $50,000 – 70,000
Sold for $68,750
Lot 49
Mohamed Abo Khalil Lotfy
Est. $10,000 – 15,000
Sold for $13,750
Lot 53
Abdelaziz Gorgi
Joueurs de Chkoba ; Veillée du Ramadan (Chokba Players ; Eve of Ramadan)
Est. $30,000 – 40,000
Sold for $43,750
Lot 56
Inji Aflatoun
L’Or Blanc (White Gold)
Est. $20,000 -30,000
Sold for $68,750
*Estimates do not include buyer’s premium
** Artists whose works were offered at auction for the first time are not included among the 13 records achieved tonight.
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