Christie's first Evening Sale of 20th Century British & Irish Art included The Lord Forte Collection of Works by L.S. Lowry, and this helped it to achieve a highly impressive £23,625,000 ($37.2m). This was the highest total for the category at Christie's, selling 92% of lots.
Lowry certainly dominated the sale with seven of the top ten lots being works by the Lancastrian artist, and the top lot matched the highest price previously recorded for him: The Football Match, 1949, which also sold at Christie's, earlier this yearfor £5,641,250 ($8.9m).
Philip Harley, Director, Head of 20th Century British & Irish Art, Christie's London commented:
"2011 marks an unprecedented year for this category at Christie's, realising £41,502,500/ $66,355,448 / €48,206,123 to date.
"This inaugural evening sale - which has set the highest total for the category at Christie's - clearly highlights the current market's insatiable appetite for the best 20th Century British & Irish Art and Christie's continued dominance in the field of L.S. Lowry.
"We are thrilled that Piccadilly Circus, London, 1960 - the star lot of the exceptional Lord Forte Collection of Works by L.S. Lowry - sold for £5.6 million, setting the joint highest price for the artist and the category.
"The collection as a whole fetched £17,668,250, far exceeding the pre-sale estimate. The strong prices set by the Ben Nicholson (lot 20) and the Caulfield (lot 37) reflect how this category is increasingly exposed to global collectors who are discovering and appreciating the rich art works of the category."