Jean-Michel Basquiat sketch auctions 260% above estimate

A characteristic sketch from the New York neo-expressionist Jean-Michel Basquiat has sold with excellent results in a Dallas auction that took place yesterday (September 5).

Jean-Michel Basquiat sketch
1981 is the year that saw Basquiat first grab the attention of the art world

The sketch, a simple yet typical representation of Basquiat's fiercely primitive style, sold for $18,000, achieving a 260% increase on its $3,000-5,000 estimate.

The sale was boosted by the impeccable provenance of the piece, having been acquired directly from the artist by the present owner's father in 1981.

1981 is a year revered by Basquiat collectors. It was during this period that Basquiat produced the majority of his finest paintings, and is also the year that first propelled him to the forefront of the art world. During this time the artist struggled with a ravaging heroin addiction that resulted in a limited production of works, a factor that is pushing values for these pieces ever higher.

Works from Basquiat have seen outstanding results at auction this year, with the record price for his work up by 23.3% to $20.1m following Christie's sale of his Untitled 1981 in June. The previous record was set just one month earlier in May, when another untitled 1981 piece sold for $16.3m.

Another Basquiat drawing, consigned from the same collector, sold for $6,000 in the auction. The price represents a 20% increase on its $5,000 high estimate and further confirms the remarkable power of his work in 2012.

A Campbell's Soup Can sketch from Andy Warhol also changed hands. Inscribed "Palm Beach 1975", the hurried sketch sold comfortably within its $1,000-1,500 estimate at $1,300.

Paul Fraser Collectibles has perhaps the most iconic piece of Andy Warhol memorabilia - his trademark black polo neck jumper.

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