Sotheby's Contemporary Art Evening Auction will be highlighted by a fantastic Abstraktes Bild work from Gerhard Richter on October 19 in London.
The auction is being held to coincide with the highly respected Frieze Art Fair in London, which will be holding Frieze Masters - a selling exhibition of both antique and modern works - for the first time. Sotheby's has designed its own sale to reflect this, with both established and emerging artists represented.
Abstraktes Bild will head the auction as an important work from Gerhard Richter's longest running and most acclaimed series. It was originally produced as part of a smaller series of four oil paintings, with one of these currently housed in the joint collection of Tate and National Galleries Scotland. Originating from the collection of musician Eric Clapton, the piece will sell with a £9-12m ($14.1-18.8m) estimate.
Clapton bought the work for $3.4m at Sotheby's in 2001, setting a new record for an abstract by the artist. The current record for Richter's work stands with a 1993 Abstraktes Bild piece, which was sold for $21.8m at Christie's Post-War and Contemporary Art sale in May.
Another of the auction's highlights is provided by a blue sponge relief from Yves Klein. The announcement comes just days after Christie's stated that its New York contemporary art sale in November will feature an important example of Klein's "Relief éponge" work. The piece at Sotheby's, entitled RE 9-1, is not as significant as the one at Christie's, but is nonetheless a masterpiece from Klein's most coveted series. It is expected to bring $2-3m.
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