Auction Update Review


Some Early Strength

For the week ending Saturday January 19th 7 auctions were archived to the AED; 3 in US dollars, 2 in British pounds and 2 in euros.  Total turnover was $1,642,742.  The total of the high estimates of all lots was $2,140,511.  Two thousand one hundred and fourteen lots were offered and 1,620 sold for a 77% success rate.  The recent trend has been for reserves to be modest and it’s helping to clear materials accumulating to sell.  It’s a healthy trend although too early to say what it portends for the important spring season.


One indicator is clear; the number of sales posted in the January auction calendar. That number in 2012 was 32, this January 51.


Only one sale saw total sales exceed 100% of the total of their high estimates:


Lyons and Turnbull.  Rare Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Photography on January 16th:  111%


Their runner up was Bloomsbury Auctions’ Bibliophile Books on January 17th:  93%


Three sales saw at least 80% of their lots sell:


Heritage Auctions.  Rare Books Internet sale ended January 17th:  91%

Bloomsbury Auctions.  Bibliophile Books on January 17th:  88%

Lyon and Turnbull.  Rare Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Photographs on January 16th:  82%.


For the week ahead 18 sales are scheduled:


Mon. Jan. 21st      Bruun Rasmussen.  Old Prints [1304a].   23 lots

                                    Copley Fine Art.  Sporting Prints, Books [12113].  48 lots


Tues. Jan 22nd        Bruun Rasmussen.  Modern Prints [1304b].  49 lots


Wed. Jan. 23rd          Rupert Toovey and Co.  Prints [1098].  37 lots


Thurs. Jan. 24th          Bloomsbury Auctions.  Antiquarian Books [12413].  202 lots

                                    Keys Fine Arts Auctioneers.  Books, Day 1 [1071].  730 lots

                                    PBA Galleries. Americana – Asian-American History – Travel – Maps and Views [498].  434 lots

                                    Swann Galleries.   20th Century Illustration Original Art / Books, Featuring Maurice Sendak [2300].  281 lots

                                    Heritage Auctions.  Rare Books.  Internet bidding ends today [201304].  201 lots

                                    Rossini.  Posters [20990]  299 lots


Friday Jan. 25th          Christies.  American Prints [2670].   14 lots

Keys Fine Arts Auctioneers.  Books, Day 2 [1072].  122 lots

                                    Sothebys.  Audubon Prints [N08950].  39 lots


Saturday Jan. 26th     Robert C. Eldred, Inc.  Prints, Books [778].  50 lots

                                    Morton Casa de Subastas.  Maps [660].  202 lots

                                    Sotheby’s.  Prints [N08950].  39 lots

                                    Neret – Minet & Tessier/  Marine – Voyages [15190].


Sun. Jan 27th              National Book Auctions.  Books and Ephemera – Americana, Antique, Firsts, Nautical, etc.  [01272013]


Here is a link to the RecentAuctions Spreadsheet.  It’s still being tweaked but is already useful.


It’s much too early to see any pattern other than the rising volume present all through continues into 2013.


Bruce McKinney


20 January 2013

  • <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> <i>Manhattan Gay Scene Guide 1969, Summer Edition,</i> Mattachine Book Service. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> Harvey Milk, 2 autograph letters signed, to Pat Mormon, during US Navy service, 1954. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> Oscar Wilde, <i>“The secret of life is in Art,”</i> autograph quotation dated and signed, 1882. $4,000 to $6,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> Daniel Abraham, original art for <i>Stonewall Romances,</i> pen, ink & gouache, 1979. $2,000 to $3,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> Antonio Lopez, 9 men’s fashion studies, graphite, 1974. $3,000 to $4,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> Susie Gaynes & Amy E. Bartell, <i>March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights,</i> 1987. $600 to $900.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> <i>Paris is Burning,</i> photo offset poster by Anne Dutlinger, signed by film director Jennie Livingston, 1991. $400 to $600.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> Toyen, pen & ink illustration from <i>Marquis de Sade: Justina cili prokletí ctnosti,</i> 1932. $8,000 to $12,000.
    <b>Swann Auction Galleries Aug 13:</b> David Wojnarowicz, <i>Untitled (Genet with Dog),</i> mixed media collage. $8,000 to $12,000.