Lehman Brothers art sale nets $1.34m

The Lehman Brothers art sale on November 1 was a resounding success, with its $1.34m total nearly doubling the $760,800 estimate.

Of course, this is only a moderately good news day for those to whom Lehman Brothers owe a debt of $250bn - but it's been an uplifting one for the art market.

The 283 lots, dominated by New York themes, sold well, despite the lack of reserve prices on anything.

Some former Lehman employees and workers from other financial company employees were among the bidders.

The first indication that the sale was going well was Louis Lozowick's lithograph Hanover Square, which sold for $26,200, easily tripling its top estimate of $8,000.

Roy Lichtenstein's I Love Liberty (a print depicting the Statue of Liberty) doubled its valuation to sell at $49,000.

Elsewhere, Georges Schreiber's view of a Brooklyn Bridge sunset sold for $20,000 - five times what was expected.

Slightly eerie was the picture of an office in disarray by Chester Arnold, which was one of the company's last purchases. It sold for $4,500.

Two of the most spectacular performers were a $100 bill illustrated with gold leaf by artist Tony Hill, which was listed at just $400, but sold for over 10 times that: $4,687.

Yvonne Jacquette's Midtown Composite, a print of a night-time Manhattan view fetched $16,250 - almost 10 times its top estimate of $1,800.

Freeman's Auctioneers will continue the sale of Lehman's 650 piece strong collection on December 6.


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