Christie's Open House auction totals $1.8m in New York

The Christie's Open House auction in New York saw new artists exceed estimates as savvy collectors clamoured to invest in the booming art market.

Ruth Asawa Untitled hanging sculpture
Investors are keen to join the booming post-war and contemporary art market

The July 16 auction featured a selection of mid-range artworks, with estimates ranging from just $1,000 to $150,000. With a focus on post-war and contemporary art, the sale was destined for success - Christie's posted a 34% increase in sales for the sector in the first half of 2012, the market's popularity exemplified by the record-breaking sale of Mark Rothko's Orange, Red, Yellow in May this year.

The top lot of the Open House sale came from Ruth Asawa's 1962 sculpture, Untitled (S.073 Hanging Single Sphere, Five Layer Continuous Form within a Form). It sold for $146,500, pushing close to the high estimate of $150,000.

One of the auction's most dramatic sales came from its second-highest selling lot, Philip Pasqua's Untitled (2006). The masterful oil on canvas portrait soared past its $40,000 high estimate to achieve an impressive $134,500 - a 236.2% increase on its initial valuation.

Christie's Nathania Nisonson commented: "The re-launch of Open House was met with great excitement and lively bidding from the packed sale room, on the phones and on-line. Many emerging artists saw auction results that far exceeded their sale estimates, while established artists continued their great success at auction."

Paul Fraser Collectibles has a superb range of affordable investment-grade artworks currently in stock for collectors looking to join this thriving market. This original Salvador Dali drawing perfectly demonstrates the artist's magnificent use of form and provides a rare opportunity to own his work at an excellent price.


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