Top Three Lots at Phillips New York 20th Century & Contemporary Art Sale

Even though two high-valued paintings were passed at Phillips' New York 20th Century 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale, the auction house was able to turn the table around with its leading Basquiat’s Flexible, which realized US$45.3m.

The centerpiece of the sale was Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Flexible. Painted in 1984, the present work measures 259.1 x 190.5 cm. Estimated at US$20m-30m, the painting was acquired directly from the artist by the present owner. It was offered at auction for the first time and hammered down at US$40m. It was sold for US$45.3m to a telephone bidder.

The second highest price was achieved by Robert Motherwell’s At Five in the Afternoon, carrying a presale estimate of US$12m-18m. It was sold for US$12.7m with buyer’s premium.

The third top lot was Andy Warhol’s Last Supper, executed by the artist before his untimely death. Estimated at US$8m-12m, it was sold for US$8.75m with buyer’s premium.

Of all 38 lots offered, three were passed and three were withdrawn. The sale achieved 84 percent sold by lot and a sale total of US$131m.


Top Three Lots

Jean-Michel Basquiat (1960-1988). Flexible.

Lot no.: 5
Created in: 1984
Size: 259.1 x 190.5cm
Provenance: Acquired from the artist by the present owner
Estimate: US$20,000,000 - 30,000,000
Price realised: US$45,315,000

Robert Motherwell (1915-1991). Robert Motherwell.

Lot no.: 8
Created in: 1971
Size: 228.6 x 305.1cm

  • The Artist
  • Knoedler & Company, New York
  • Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1981

Estimate: US$12,000,000 - 18,000,000
Price realised: US$12,690,000

Andy Warhol (1928-1987). Last Supper.

Lot no.: 14
Created in: 1986
Size: 101.6 x 101.6cm

  • Galerie Hans Mayer, Dusseldorf
  • Private Collection
  • Phillips, London, June 29, 1988, lot 58
  • Galerie Fabien Boulakia, Paris
  • Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1989

Estimate: US$8,000,000 - 12,000,000
Price realised: US$8,752,500

Auction summary

Auction house: Phillips New York
Sale: 20th Century & Contemporary Art Evening Sale
Sale date: 2018/5/17
Lots offered: 38
Sold: 32
Unsold: 6
Sold by lot: 84%
Sale total: US$131,564,750