1. Raphael’s (1483-1520) chalk drawing “Head of a Muse” sold for 29.2 million pounds ($47.6 million) at Christie’s London on Dec. 8, setting an auction record for a work of art on paper. It was bought by the U.S.-based collector Leon Black, chief executive of Apollo Global Management LLC and a trustee of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
2. Henri Matisse’s (1869-1954) 1911 still life of cowslips, “Les coucous, tapis bleu et rose” from the collection of late couturier Yves Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Berge sold for 35.9 million euros ($45.6 million), an artist record, at a Christie’s Paris auction on Feb. 23. The buyer was New York- based dealer Franck Giraud.
4. Constantin Brancusi’s (1876-1957) wooden sculpture “Madame L.R.” (Portrait de Mme L.R. 1914-17), sold for 29.2 million euros ($37.1 million) at Christie’s Feb. 23 auction in Paris from the collection of Saint Laurent and Berge.
5. Rembrandt’s 1658 “Portrait of a Man with Arms Akimbo” sold for 20.2 million pounds ($32.9 million) to Las Vegas casino developer Steve Wynn. The painting was sold by Johnson & Johnson heiress Barbara Piasecka Johnson at Christie’s London on Dec. 8.
6. An Art Deco armchair with lacquered wood arms shaped as dragons, by designer Eileen Gray (1878-1976), sold for 21.9 million euros ($28.1 million), more than 10 times its low estimate at Christie’s Paris. The work from the collection of Saint Laurent and Berge established an auction record for 20th-century design.
8. A Ming-dynasty scroll “Eighteen Arhats” by Wu Bin (1573-1620) sold for 170 million yuan ($25 million) at Poly International Auction Co. in Beijing in November. Shanghai-based collector and stock-investor Liu Yiqian bought the work.
Source: Business Week