Bidders from 34 Countries Drive 75% of Lots Sold Above Estimate

Record Price for an Early Painting by Hodgkin
Record Price for an Original Work on Paper by Howard Hodgkin
Record Price for Bhupen Khakhar, Hodgkin’s Close Friend & One of
India’s Greatest 20th C Artists

Second-Highest Price Ever Achieved for Hodgkin’s ‘Painter-Colleague’ Patrick Caulfield

- Works Fetching Combined Total of £366,000 To Benefit Charities Supported by Hodgkin –

“The response to the sale has been quite remarkable, and I think Howard would have been taken aback by it: he longed to move people with his work and the sale’s success suggests that there is a strong emotional link between him and the public. Sotheby’s called it "Portrait of the Artist" and it has given people an insight into Howard’s personal world, through his passion for objects. The sale has perhaps also opened up the magic world of Indian and Islamic art: as beautiful as it is accessible. He would have liked that. The sale is very much part of Howard’s legacy. The proceeds enable his letter of wishes to be honoured, and he would have been thrilled that his work has raised £366,000 for 11 very different charities, including the Mark Morris Dance Group, whose show Layla and Majnun, with Howard’s stage and costume designs, opens on Thursday 26th at the Rose Theater in New York, before travelling to London next autumn.”

Antony Peattie, Howard Hodgkin’s partner
Sotheby’s London, Tuesday October 24 2017 – Testament to the exceptional eye of British painter Howard Hodgkin, the kaleidoscope of exquisite objects that the artist so carefully drew together in his home, exceeded pre-sale expectations and sold for a combined total of £5,184,887 / $6,843,532 / €5,806,049 (est. £2.5-3.8m). The contents of the auction, titled Howard Hodgkin: Portrait of the Artist, cast new light on the aesthetic innovations of one of the greatest artists of our time, revealing what inspired him and what he held close. For the first time the public had the opportunity to see his work alongside objects from Italy to India that had inspired him. Following international exhibitions of sale highlights in Mumbai, Dubai and a full exhibition in Sotheby’s London galleries that attracted visitors in the thousands, bidders responded with enthusiasm, with many lots selling for multiples of their pre-sale estimate and 75% lots sold fetching prices above their pre-sale high estimate.

Top lot of the sale was one of the greatest works by Bhupen Khakhar ever to come to market, De-Luxe Tailors, which is the last of the seminal Tradesman series in private hands. The painting of 1972 (lot 110) soared above estimate to fetch £1,112,750 (est. £250,000–350,000) – a record price for the artist. It had previously been loaned by Hodgkin to feature prominently in the recent Tate retrospective of Khakhar’s work. The painting epitomises the artist’s early style and is a signature work from this period. Hodgkin was in many ways his mentor and in some ways his liberator. Hosting Khakhar in England at various times in the late 1970s, finding him teaching positions and advocating for his works with galleries and museums, Hodgkin helped Khakhar to expand his horizons: his art seemed to become freer, looser, funnier and unflinchingly honest. It was Hodgkin’s friendship and encouragement that may have sparked Khakhar’s recognition as one of India’s greatest 20th-century artists.

Hodgkin’s friendships were powerfully represented in his personal collection by the works of fellow artists with whom he was particularly close and, crucially, those whose art he respected and admired. He once described Patrick Caulfield as “the closest I ever came to having a painter-colleague”, so is fitting that Caulfield’s Sweet Bowl of 1966 (lot 275) fetched £524,750 - the second-highest price for a work at auction following the price achieved for Foyer which sold in Sotheby’s sale of David Bowie’s collection last year. Two further works by Caulfield brought the combined total for works sold by the artist to £639,750: Patio (lot 276), painted in 1988, depicting a lamp fetched £110,000 (est. £50,000-80,000) and Jug (lot 279) fetched £5,000 (est. £4,000-6,000).

Further friendships represented by works that Howard owned include a gift to Hodgkin by Peter Blake following a 1974 exhibition, A Souvenir (lot 22) which fetched £16,500. Robyn Denny’s Out-Line 2 of 1962 (lot 25) sold for £20,000.

Hodgkin said in 1995 that ‘I have absolutely no desire to collect my own work…’ so it is significant that he kept Bedroom (lot 69) which featured in his debut show at the ICA with Allan Jones in 1962, and today fetched £248,750 – a record price for an early work by the artist. An iconic work by Hodgkin that featured in the sale was the Mural Design for British Council Building, New Delhi (lot 322), which sold for £81,250 (est. £25,000-35,000) – a record price for an original work on paper by the artist. The gouache on paper was created in preparation for his largest work, the giant mural cut from white marble and black granite on the façade of the British Council Building in New Delhi, which he completed in 1992. The combined total for all the works by Howard Hodgkin sold in the sale was £603,957.

  • 24.10.2017
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    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus »

    Auction in London on 24th October 2017.

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  • Lot 110 - Bhupen Khakhar, De-Luxe Tailors, est. £250,000 - 350,000, sold £1,112,750
    Lot 110 - Bhupen Khakhar, De-Luxe Tailors, est. £250,000 - 350,000, sold £1,112,750
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • Lot 275 - Patrick Caulfield R.A., Sweet Bowl, £300,000 - 500,000, Lot Sold £524,750
    Lot 275 - Patrick Caulfield R.A., Sweet Bowl, £300,000 - 500,000, Lot Sold £524,750
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
  • A selection of Indian drawings and paintings from the 17th to 20th century, three of which feature Caparisoned Elephants, No
    A selection of Indian drawings and paintings from the 17th to 20th century, three of which feature Caparisoned Elephants, No
    Sotheby’s Auktionshaus
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