Sotheby's

Sotheby’s have been holding auctions since 1744.  Founded in London, where they moved into salerooms on Bond Street in 1917, Sotheby’s expanded to New York in 1955 and now have salerooms and offices around the world.

Sotheby’s offer specialist sales in over 70 different categories though four major salerooms, six smaller ones and through their online bidding platform BIDnow.


Riding the Marcel wave…

14 June 2002

Marcel Breuer is one of the major names in furniture associated with the Bauhaus design school. When examples of his distinctive take on modernist furniture design come up for auction they regularly make substantial sums, but it is rare for an entire collection to find its way under the hammer especially a collection of specially commissioned pieces from a named provenance.

Portrait miniature makes £200,000

13 June 2002

This portrait miniature of a 30-year-old lady by Nicholas Hilliard, dated 1582, set a new auction record for the artist at Sotheby’s Olympia rooms on June 6 when it sold to a private collector bidding on the phone against the room for £200,000 (plus premium).

Dublin unveils unknown hoard of works by Joyce

12 June 2002

THE National Library of Ireland has acquired a sprawling collection of manuscripts by James Joyce, which remained hidden for nearly 60 years after being concealed from the Nazis.They include a total of some 700 pages in six notebooks, 16 drafts from Ulysses and typescripts and proofs of Finnegans Wake.

Taubman starts sell-off process

12 June 2002

ALFRED Taubman, who has just announced an appeal against his collusion conviction, has started the ball rolling in his bid to sell his controlling stake in Sotheby’s.

MD steps down at Sotheby’s Olympia

05 June 2002

Paul Sumner, managing director of Sotheby’s Olympia, has resigned from the company and is returning to Australia where he plans to set up his own business.

Taubman appeals against conviction

31 May 2002

In a second attempt to have his price-fixing conviction overturned, former Sotheby’s auction house chairman A. Alfred Taubman has asked an appeals court to reconsider his case, citing errors by the trial judge. “This was not a fair fight,” lawyers for the Bloomfield Hills multimillionaire said when filing the 95-page appeal document on May 21.

Customised copies have that something extra special

28 May 2002

Painter Albin Burt’s customised copy of an otherwise standard textbook, a two-vol., 1817 edition of Stewart’s Elements of the Natural History of the Animal Kingdom, contains extensive manuscript additions and hundreds of original illustrations to add to the basic 12 engraved plates.

Coming Up in London

28 May 2002

THIS unrecorded portrait by John Constable, estimated to make up to £80,000, was discovered by East Anglian auctioneer and fine art broker John Vost during a routine valuation at a house on the Suffolk/Norfolk border.

Now Contemporary sales boost confidence

23 May 2002

CHRISTIE’S established 15 new auction records at their Rockefeller Centre saleroom on the evening of May 14 with a $42.1m (£29.9m) sale of Post-War and Contemporary Art.

20% first quarter drop for Sotheby’s

23 May 2002

SOTHEBY’S results for the first quarter of 2002 show a 20 per cent drop in revenues – no great surprise following September 11 and smaller London Impressionist and Contemporary sales.

Coming up in London.....

15 May 2002

The late Clive Sherwood bought this imposing Elizabethan oak tester bed at Sotheby’s in London in 1969. By all accounts he had to sell all his silver to raise the cash, but he was still buying early oak at a time when it was possible to buy in bulk and learn from your mistakes.

New York’s Impressionist and Modern market bounces back

14 May 2002

Sotheby’s quadruple recent results and Christie’s celebrate boost too: Barely a month after its former chairman and chief executive were sentenced in a New York court, Sotheby’s bounced back in their Manhattan saleroom on May 8 with a $126m (£88.7m) Part I auction of Impressionist and Modern Art.

Philip cracks the Coade

09 May 2002

Although all the other sales that used to be held at Sotheby’s Billingshurst have now moved to their Olympia rooms*, the one notable exception is their twice-yearly auctions of garden statuary and architectural items. These continue to be held in West Sussex where they can benefit from Billingshurst’s location for a stylish viewing in their country house grounds.

Dede Brooks gets house detention and community service

08 May 2002

Former Sotheby’s chief executive Diana ‘Dede’ Brooks was sentenced to six months ‘home detention’ last Monday after pleading guilty to fixing commissions for vendors with Christie’s between 1993 and 1999.

Taubman jailed, and Tennant to quit as RA fund chief

02 May 2002

The former chairmen of Sotheby’s and Christie’s faced different but equally humiliating fates last week following the auction house price-fixing scandal.

Wade in for studio pot luck

25 April 2002

One of the main preoccupations of the 19th century art potters – and a distinguishing feature of much of their work – is an emphasis on hand crafting and experimental work and an interest in the techniques and glazes of earlier periods.

EC intend to act on collusion

22 April 2002

The European Commission announced last week that they intend to take action against Sotheby’s and Christie’s regarding a whole range of anti-competitive practices.

Dallying deity pulls in the bids

17 April 2002

NEW YORK: They say that sex sells, but it would be wrong to assume this was the only attraction of this 18th century Indian illustration to the Gita Govinda, Krishna and Radha Make Love, 1775-1780, 101/8in by 61/8in (25.7cm x15.6cm).

Trade and private buyers compete vigorously for the most desirable pieces… with mixed results

17 April 2002

There were auction highs and lows during New York’s March Asia week that saw Sotheby’s (20/15/10% buyer’s premium) and Christie’s (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) hosting eight sales in four days, from March 19-22.

Do upwardly mobile figures mean an upturn in the market?

17 April 2002

THE FIRST oak and country sale of 2002 for Sotheby’s Olympia (17.5/10% buyer’s premium) took place on March 26 with just over 300 lots of furniture, metalware and decorative works of art and a smattering of textiles.

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